Questions tagged [phonology]

The study of the abstract aspect of the sounds or *phonemes* in a given language.

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Resource for finding languages that contain certain phonemes [duplicate]

In particular /w~b/ or other sounds that could be transcribed as <w> or <b>. Background: A person gave his name variously as 'John Barosa' or 'John Warosa' in writing from which I figured ...
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According to the Elsewhere Principle, can a syntactic rule block a morphological one, or a morphological rule a phonological one?

I read up on the Elsewhere Principle. In the linked article two examples are given: The syntactic comparative "more + adjective" can be overruled by the morphological comparative "adjective+er" for (...
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The letter <u> in Provençal: when is it [y] and when is it [œ]?

In most dialects of Occitan, the letter <u> is pronounced [y] generally. However, in Provençal it appears to be pronounced [œ] by some speakers some of the time. This wikipedia article states (...
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Looking for references about the orthographic transparency

I need to have two tables as showing both grapheme-phoneme and phoneme-grapheme relationships in a couple of languages to be compared mathematically. In fact, I want to know how many phonemes stand ...
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Is there a name for when a 'c' becomes an [s] sound in words like rusticity, when originally it was a 'c' in rustiC?

I know it's a sound change, but is there a specific name for it? It's for an assignment I'm writing on the phonological transparency of the suffix -ity.
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What are cyclic and non-cyclic application in Phonology?

I'm still confused about the two abstract definitions. Can you give some examples to explain?
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Guttural pronunciation of {h} in American English

I'm not a native speaker. I've noticed that some Americans pronounce {h} as a guttural sound sometimes. Is this a documented feature of American English? Examples: https://youtu.be/j2I9LpDF708?t=7 (...
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What is “metrically free elements”?

According to the Free Element Condition, only metrically free elements may undergo metrical construction. But what is "metrically free elements"?
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Pronouncing h as /x/? [closed]

I am curious about phonics and wonder if pronouncing the /h/ sound as /x/ would be distinguishable. This is basically turning a k into a fricative, and this is basically h fronting.
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What is the relation between sonority and stress?

Are there any relations between stress and sonority? Does stress denote high sonority?
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What is the difference between Minimal Onset Satisfaction and Onset Maximization Principle?

Since they both describe that onsets take priority over of codas, what is the difference between them?
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Is there a principled reason behind differing compound verb stress in English?

Is there a principled difference between compound verbs in English with stress on the first root and those with stress on the second root? First root stress compound verbs: Dropkick Spoonfeed ...
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what is the difference between [g] and [ɣ]?

Does [ɣ] appear in english anywhere? I've seen [ɣ] listed as occuring in the spanish word "amigo" but I don't notice any difference between it & [g]. The Arabic equivalent is [غ].
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Why do we pronounce the letter “A” as the “eɪ” in Stake, and as “æ” in Cabbage?

I wondered about the difference between those vowels. Is there a rule that decides what articulation fits the syllabe in each word and what is that rule. I tried phonogical analysis on those vowels in ...
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What is the dividing line between phonetics and phonology? [duplicate]

From my understanding, Phonetics is the study of physical aspect of sounds, including how sounds are produced (articulatory phonetics), how they are perceived (auditory phonetics) and the physics ...
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Do ongoing sound changes often impact L2 speech production?

I'm trying to find out whether L1 ongoing sound changes often impact speech productions in an L2. For instance, an ongoing sound change in Brazilian Portuguese (i.e. the arising of new consonant ...
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What is the difference between “ɪ”, “i”, “i:”? [duplicate]

What is the difference between “ɪ”, "i", “i:”? Is “ɪ” lax and short, "i" tense and short, "i:" tense and long?
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What is the difference between tense vowel and vowel with diacritic “:”?

I'm learning the vowel part of phonology. It says the cardinal vowel "i" is tense. But what is the difference between this cardinal "i" and "i:"? They are both tense, right?
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What is Proto-Semitic *x̣?

In his Akkadian grammar (specifically the appendix on phonology), Huehnergard lists the following Proto-Semitic consonants: Most of this looks familiar to me. However, *x̣ caught me by surprise; I'm ...
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How many morae would an affricate in the position of a coda have?

Would it have two, because it's technically two phonemes, or one?
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Phonemes with complementing allophones

Assume the following example: In its phoneme set, language X has the vowel /e/ which corresponds to the phone [e], except when followed by /r/, in which case it is realized as the phone [æ]. At the ...
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Strange Vocal Trills (L, Th, and Q)

I’m currently spending my quarantine working on the language for my novel. The language is alien-like, so I wanted to make it extremely difficult in it’s phonology. There are several trills. The ...
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What might explain this change in place of articulation? [closed]

I'd like to know if there's anything about /patitʰin/ that suggests itself as a reason why it might sometimes be pronounced [patikʰin]. I don't know what other words to look at to see if there's a ...
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Distinguishing between [s] and [ʪ] in spectrogram

Is there is a way to differentiate between [s] and [ʪ] using spectral analysis (Pratt or spectrum view or any other software)? Is there is any particular pattern that only appears with the [ʪ]? [ʪ] ...
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Critics and arguments against the generative syntax theories?

The Generative approach on syntax is very elegant, useful and very complete as far as I can see. I think that, as all theories have, there must have some critics on it. But I don't know where to find ...
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What is phonological mechanism?

Does it mean phonological rule? Or can we say phonological mechanism refers to the phonological rules in our mind?
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When do we use strong /biː/ instead of weak /bi/ in english?

I am wondering in which context people stress the be in English grammar. Both Wiktionary and Wordrefence have a weak and a strong form in their dictionary : https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/be#English ...
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Labialised /r/ in RP

Is /r/ in RP labialised in all positions? For example: In words like real, free, proud, tree, brother, borrow, dream, throw etc. Is it labialised in all positions (like intervocalic, post-...
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What is the difference between /iə/ and /ɪə/ in /məˈtɪəriəl/ “material” (RP)?

I don't understand what's the difference between /iə/ and /ɪə/. https://www.wordreference.com/es/translation.asp?tranword=material Can somebody explain ? Best Regards.
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Is it correct for the rules of this voice alternations?

I'm a graduate student from Korea. I'm doing some practice about assimilation but I don't know if it is correct. Here is the question: "cat" and "cats" "dog" and "dogs" "hen" and "hens" And this is ...
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How were glottal stops indicated in Akkadian cuneiform?

According to Huehnergard, Akkadian had a phonemic glottal stop. This makes sense, given the language's heritage. However, he doesn't seem to mention it anywhere in the chapters on orthography, and I ...
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What should the phonological rules be for this alternation?

I'm a graduate student from Korea. :) May I ask you guys a question about phonology? In the data, divinity and divine, what are the phonological rule and phonological mechanisms for the alternation ...
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How to analyze these data with Optimality Theory?

I'm a graduate student from Korea. As a novice in the field of phonology, I've been confused about analysis using Optimality Theory for a long time. Could you guys help me with this question? In ...
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Do stressed (in e.g. English) or pitched (in e.g. Japanese) phones contribute to different phonemes?

In proper tonal languages such as cantonese or mandarin, the phones a phoneme comprises of share the same tone. In other words, mā (in pinyin) and má are clearly different phonemes. If I were to look ...
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Are there any recent studies on vowels of PRS?

Consonants and their phenomena are well studied for PRS (Puerto Rican Spanish). However, vowels and their phenomena are less well known. Known vowel phenomena in the dialect are unstressed/final vowel ...
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What are the main weaknesses of autosegmental phonology?

There are several different overarching models of phonology, with different strengths and weaknesses. For example, optimality theory is good at explaining the "conspiracies of rules" that show up in ...
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Writing a phonological rule

Could you please help me revise the phonological rule in Turkish below? It means that "/e/ becomes [ɛ] when followed by a non-dorsal sonorant in the same syllable and if /e/ occurs at the beginning ...
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How did this alternation happen?

Wiktionary's entry for "seldom" contains the following etymology: From late Middle English seldom, alteration of earlier selden, from Old English seldan (“seldom”), from Proto- Germanic *...
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How to write phonology rules using features?

Is there a way to write the following phonology rule using features? The /u/ becomes [ɯ] word-finally when preceded with an unrounded vowel with 1 or more intervening consonants. .
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Can loudness of speech sounds influence meaning?

In Chinese, words can have different meanings if their tones are changed, e.g. 是 (shì) and 十 (shí). In Italian, words can have different meanings if a consonant is geminated, e.g. sete and sette. My ...
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What is a natural class in phonology? How to use phonological features to identify classes?

What are natural classes in phonology? Can phonological features make a set of segments a natural class? For example, is there any way to make a natural class out of the set: [k, x, q,χ]? What ...
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Has the Russian way of pronunciation been affected by frost?

I am a student learning both English and Russian, and I find the Russian pronunciation to be very different from the English one. A few months ago I made a detailed post on the Linguistics SE to ...
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Is there a term for the position of a phoneme in a word?

I am studying emerging Brazilian Portuguese consonant clusters and I'm unaware of how to properly call a group of positions such as "word-initial" or "word-final position". The aim is to use this term ...
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Phonemes or allophones?

In our coursebook, introducing phonology by David Odden, one of the exercise questions asks us to decide if the obstruents of Thai are phonemes or allophones. My teacher says they are allophones but ...
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What is this Cree sound in IPA?

https://nehiyo.ca/wp-content/uploads/2020/01/uy-uyiwak.mp3 I have been trying to find an equivalent to this sound. The language is Canadian Plains Cree. It's not "i" as in bite or fight. Is there an ...
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What do these subscripts/superscripts mean in IPA?

Here is an example of a sentence from the Glossika course in Taiwanese Hokkien: The "Phonics" line is the IPA line. (The "Typing" line is the Tâi-lô romanization; I don't know where the "...
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187 views

Final intonation of a question in a pitch-accent language

How do pitch-accent languages deal with potential confusion between the pitch to distinguish two words, and the pitch to make a question? For example, if you got word 'Ab' and word 'aB', how could ...
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How well do Semitic languages preserve consonants over time?

I'm not too familiar with the details of Semitic languages, but as far as I can tell it seems the tri-consonantal roots of words are relatively important. If the consonants change over time, did they ...
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Is there a linguistic term for replacing past tense verb with present tense?

In my dialect of English (North West England), we sometimes use the present tense of a verb when standard English employs the past tense, such as in the sentence below: "I waits for the bus ...
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How can we trace the source of orthographic inconsistency?

It is known that orthography has both positive and negative effects on second language acquisition. However, I can't really figure out when the effect is due to the L1, the L2 or both. For example, ...

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