Focusing on the perception verb systems in three little documented Khoe languages, i.e., ⫲Haba, G∣ui, and G∥ana, the present paper demonstrates their typologically unique feature, namely the crosslinguistically uncommon behavior of TASTE among the five sense modalities involved in perception verbs. By using the new findings the paper examines two models of the sense-modality hierarchy proposed by Viberg (1984, 2001). In addition, this study also reports on two peculiar lexical semantic classes, i.e., “elaborate taste verbs” and “food texture verbs”, attested in G∣ui and G∥ana, in which TASTE potentially plays an important role. The findings of this study have some theoretical implications for lexical typology since they show a subtle interaction between universal and language-specific factors.
© by Walter de Gruyter Berlin Boston