Community Digest

Top new questions this week:

Any languages that consider the alveolar and uvular trill distinct consonant phonemes?

I am intrigued by the difference between alveolar and uvular trills (and related phones) within and across languages, e.g., per this map of European /r/ usage (taken from this comment), which seems to ...

phonology phonemes articulation  
asked by Stephan Kolassa 8 votes
answered by Tristan 8 votes

What is Ugaritic "Ž"?

In New Evidence on the Last Days of Ugarit (1965), Astour quotes a Ugaritic letter (RS 19.11) which seems to include a glyph "Ž": However, I haven't been able to find any source talking ...

cuneiform ugaritic  
asked by Draconis 6 votes
answered by Yellow Sky 7 votes

Who decides the phonemes of a given language?

Who decides the phonemes of a given language and on what basis do they decide? Do the phonemes of a language change over time, if so, who changes them? I am extremely confused about this question ...

phonology phonemes  
asked by Sphinx 5 votes
answered by user6726 9 votes

Linguistic term to describe the "hash" of a word

For example, in the Spanish sentence "Yo era chico y ella era vieja" [I was little and she was old], era appears twice, each time as the same part of speech (a verb) but with different ...

terminology  
asked by zadrozny 2 votes
answered by Tristan 4 votes

Phonological rule for liquid dissimilation

I am trying to write a phonological rule for liquid dissimilation in Georgian, but I’ve run into some issues since I haven’t had much practice yet. The rule I’m trying to write is for changing r into ...

phonology  
asked by Jay 2 votes
answered by user6726 1 vote

Principles and Parameters vs. Government and Binding

I'm a little confused about the difference between P&P and GB. This Wikipedia article suggests that they are the same as grammar frameworks, from what I understood: Principles and parameters as a ...

syntax theoretical-linguistics generative-grammar universal-grammar transformational-grammar  
asked by user22577 1 vote
answered by user6726 0 votes

Is there a device that lets linguists measure aspiration?

Is there a device that lets linguists measure aspiration? I want to find out if languages in which aspiration can be the only difference between phonemes (e.g. Chinese) have more breath difference ...

phonology aspiration  
asked by MCCCS 1 vote

Greatest hits from previous weeks:

Are language and thought the same?

I want to know whether language and thought are the same. I think language enriches one's thought and thought helps one to use language better. Without language how could man think? Did they ...

historical-linguistics language-acquisition  
asked by successive suspension 18 votes
answered by Draconis 37 votes

Why don't you get back the original text when you use translation software to translate something into another language and then back into English?

I translated "How to use Web?" into some other language using machine translation, but after I translated the result back into English, it is not the same as the first text I put into the translator. ...

computational-linguistics translation machine-translation  
asked by new QOpenGLWidget 28 votes

What is the difference between "anaphora" and "deixis"?

I've been trying to understand an answer from another SE site (Japanese Language & Usage) where the answer involves the differences between anaphora and deixis. Here is the link. What would be ...

syntax terminology  
asked by Ci3 14 votes
answered by Aspinea 11 votes

Is there a language whose writing is 100% phonemic?

Is there a language that has a complete one-to-one correspondence between the graphemes (letters) and the phonemes of the language? In other words, is there a language that is 100% ideally phonemic?

phonetics orthography list-of-languages  
asked by Pacerier 22 votes
answered by jlawler 19 votes

Are there languages that don't have this kind of ambiguity?

In the sentence "John told James that he's happy.", the pronoun "he" is ambiguous, since it could refer to either John or James. Are there any languages which try to solve this ...

grammar pronoun ambiguity  
asked by John 35 votes
answered by OmarL 35 votes

When should one use slashes or square brackets when transcribing in IPA?

When should one use /fubar/ and when [fubar] when transcribing in IPA? What are the differences?

phonology phonetics ipa transcription  
asked by Louis Rhys 58 votes
answered by Alek Storm 52 votes

Do any languages have kinship terms for the relationship between the respective parents of a married couple?

Do any languages have kinship terms for the relationship between each pair of parents of a married couple? For example, how would a husband’s mother refer to the wife’s mother? Do any of the kinship ...

list-of-languages kinship-terms  
asked by Mad Banners 16 votes
answered by ngn 10 votes
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