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22 votes
9 answers

Do any languages mark social distinctions other than gender and status?

Many languages have pronouns that reflect gender, and some have pronouns that reflect relative social hierarchy or formality. (To pick an example I actually know, in Dutch the second person singular ...
Jim Davis's user avatar
  • 321
6 votes
0 answers

Just how silent is the French e muet?

I know the e muet is usually considered silent. That being said, it is still often pronounced in songs and poetry (famously, in the Marseillaise). This is completely contrary to the situation in ...
Gaussler's user avatar
  • 161
5 votes
0 answers

What is the historical-linguistic origin of the high variety of the Burmese language?

In Myanmar (Burma), a state of diglossia exists. How did the high (formal) variety originate historically? Did it use to have native speakers at some point in the historical development of the ...
Mihyar's user avatar
  • 51
2 votes
2 answers

register variation: unbalanced corpus sample

I'm doing a small pilot study on evidentiality in a language I work on. I'm looking at two evidential markers, -mi that is said to mark the source of knowledge as personal, and -shi that marks ...
Wangana's user avatar
  • 152
1 vote
1 answer

vocal register factors

The wiki entry for vocal register lists 5 factors that contribute to it: phonation pitch timbre resonance vocal break However, isn't vocal break the same as resonance?
abcjme's user avatar
  • 405
1 vote
0 answers

Germanic words together with Romance words

Do combinations of words of Germanic origin with words of Latin origin have any influence on the level or register of language? I can think of examples like: exquisite work, unwavering resolution, ...
user avatar
1 vote
0 answers

Is Italian the only modern language that uses the feminine 3rd person singular pronoun for formal speech?

Is Italian the only modern language that uses the feminine 3rd person singular pronoun (Lei) for formal speech, regardless of the gender of the 2nd person singular addressee? cf. T–V_distinction#...
Geremia's user avatar
  • 312
0 votes
1 answer

Adding Sounds and Slowing Pronunciation for "Proper Speech"

I routinely hear a relative add syllables to words to sound more "correct." "menu" becomes "men-a-you." "Daily" becomes "day-uh-lee." It seems to be ...
user33897's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer

Most complex examples of tones in tonal languages

Wondering what the most complex examples are of tonal languages, and what its features are. In Chinese there are 4 or 5 tones, but they are relatively simple (contour changes, move up, down, down then ...
Lance's user avatar
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