my native language is Georgian which has the consonant cluster /st͡sʼ/ and I feel that I often use [sʼ] instead of /t͡sʼ/ in that cluster, for example:

/st͡sʼɔɾi/ "exact, "precise", and /st͡sʼɾɑpʰi/ "quick"

are these words phonetically pronounced as [sʼɔɾi] and [sʼɾɑpʰi]?

here are the examples of how I normally pronounce /t͡s/

/t͡sinɑ/ "previous" and /nɑt͡sili/ "part".

1 Answer 1


As a prelude, if you think that there is [ts'] anywhere in Georgia, you should provide a recording of unmodified [ts'] for comparison, especially an intervocalic one. Shosted & Chikovani provide airflow and acoustic evidence in initial position for a closure before the fricative in Georgian – that dialect.

The tokens that you provide are comparable to supposedly ejective /(t)s'/ in Tigrinya, based on my own work with an Eritrean speaker, where there is often no closure before the fricative. You should also look at this article on Tigrinya phonetics, which draws on other (younger) speakers from roughly the same area of Eritrea. There is no closure before the fricative release, as found in the Shosted and Rose data (same Shosted, different language). It is important to note that there is no contrast in Tigrinya between /ts'/ and /s'/, and that the sound is traditionally said to be /s'/ but could just as well be called /ts'/. I would say that the evidence you give suggests [s'] and not [ts'].

  • I added the recordings of /t͡s/ in word-initial and intervocalic positions. Jun 28 at 6:39
  • Which dialect does “that dialect” refer to? Jun 28 at 6:58
  • The one discussed by Shosted and Chikovani, as opposed to the one presently under discussion.
    – user6726
    Jun 28 at 14:59

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.