11

It is almost true, in the sense that there are nearly no cases of ejectives unambiguously developing and clearly without external influence. There are two good candidates, though: Yapese and Waimoa. Ethiopian Semitic development of ejectives can be attributed to contact with Cushitic, and Nguni ejectives to contact with Khoisan. However, it is also possible ...


9

One page further (p. 587), Huehnergard gives as one of the changes from Proto-Semitic to Old Babylonian: Common Semitic *ḫ and *x̣ merged to ḫ (Huehnergard 2003):      *ḫamisum > ḫamšum ‘five’; *saḫānum > šaḫānum ‘to be warm’;      *x̣apārum > ḫepērum ‘to dig’; *rax̣āṣ́um > raḫāṣ́um ‘to wash’. The reference is to the author's 'Akkadian ḫ and ...


5

The best reference source is the UCLA phonetics collection, here (you will notice a lot of other interesting sound categories). I have strong reservations about using Wiki exemplars which are not produced by a person natively uttering words in languages with the sound in question. The bilabial ejective is, in my opinion, misleading in that the performer ...


3

This is quite common. I would argue that that Georgian pattern is almost the same thing as the aspirated-unvoiced-ejective pattern. This variant where the plain stop is voiced occurs frequently in other Caucasian languages as well as Georgian, and also shows up pretty frequently in North America. To start looking for answers to questions like this, I would ...


3

Today´s consensus is that the emphatic sounds were realized as glottalized (as, e.g., in Akkadian), not as pharyngalized (cf., e.g., Arabic). Therefore, one for a root, no more (in Akkadian, known as the Geers´ Law). The problem with Huehnergard´s theory (as I see it) is that it reconstructs/creates quite a lot of roots with two emphatic radicals in his ...


3

In fact, the emphatic consonants do not contrast with the pharyngealized consonants, since the latter are a subgroup of the former: In Semitic linguistics, an emphatic consonant is an obstruent consonant which originally contrasted with series of both voiced and voiceless obstruents. In specific Semitic languages, the members of this series may be realized ...


1

You would be comprehensible if the rest of your Amharic was mostly "right" (conformed reasonably closely to some dialect). That is, messing with the ejectives doesn't render your speech incomprehensible. However, I think the special sociolinguistic circumstances of Amharic make it special, compared to e.g. Tigre, which is not a wide-spread national ...


1

The aspirate [kʰ] is a pulmonic consonant and the ejective [k'] is a, well, ejective consonant. You might want to check another question here related to ejective consonants and their pronunciation. If you speak English reasonably well (i.e. as either a L1 speaker or a moderately long-time learner) you'll find that the words <skid> and <kid> are, ...


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