LINGUIST List 10.546

Fri Apr 16 1999

Qs: Tewa/Tiwa, Adjectives, Language learning

Editor for this issue: Jody Huellmantel <>

We'd like to remind readers that the responses to queries are usually best posted to the individual asking the question. That individual is then strongly encouraged to post a summary to the list. This policy was instituted to help control the huge volume of mail on LINGUIST; so we would appreciate your cooperating with it whenever it seems appropriate.


  1. Alice Faber, Tewa/Tiwa
  2. Sanford Goldberg, The semantics of adj. like 'big'
  3. DAVE GOUGH, L2 Englishes and L1 varieties

Message 1: Tewa/Tiwa

Date: Thu, 15 Apr 1999 16:25:31 -0400
From: Alice Faber <>
Subject: Tewa/Tiwa

In connection with a speech perception study I'm currently running, I
need to know what lateral fricatives and affricates (if any) are found
in Tiwa/Tewa. The study itself uses sounds drawn from Tlingit and the
concern is whether a subject who speaks some Tiwa would have had prior
exposure to comparable sounds. (Maddieson's Sounds of the World's
Languages doesn't include Tiwa.)

Thanks very much.

Alice Faber
Haskins Laboratories
Mail to author|Respond to list|Read more issues|LINGUIST home page|Top of issue

Message 2: The semantics of adj. like 'big'

Date: Fri, 16 Apr 1999 13:49:26 -0600 (CST)
From: Sanford Goldberg <goldbergAC.GRIN.EDU>
Subject: The semantics of adj. like 'big'

Can anyone help me regarding the semantics and mental representation
of adjectives like 'big' and 'small', i.e., adjectives whose semantic
contribution depends on the noun they are modifying (to wit, a big
mouse is much smaller than a small car)? Since I am a philosopher of
language (and not a linguist or cognitive scientist) by profession, I
would be interested in basic information as well as the state of the
art on this topic. So I would be interested in any of the following:

(1) the terminology which cognitive scientists and/or linguists use to
describe these adjectives, as well as the terminology used to describe
the way in which these adjectives are represented in the mind/brain;

(2) references for a standard grammar-book that treats any part of
this topic; and/or

(3) references for any state-of-the art article(s) from the
linguistics and/or cognitive science literature on any part of this
topic. ...

I request that replies be sent directly to me at

Thank you very much,
Sandy Goldberg

Sanford (Sandy) Goldberg Department of Philosophy Box 805
(515) 269-3158 Grinnell College
fax: (515) 269-4414 Grinnell, IA 50112
Mail to author|Respond to list|Read more issues|LINGUIST home page|Top of issue

Message 3: L2 Englishes and L1 varieties

Date: Fri, 16 Apr 1999 20:04:27 +0200
Subject: L2 Englishes and L1 varieties

I have two queries that maybe the list could help me with.

1. The pronunciation of voiced and voiceless 'th' by L2 speakers (as in
these and thing). Thing I'm interested in is that L2 Englishes with similar
L1 phoneme inventories that include [f] [s] and [t] etc. 'select' different
realisations of vd and vless th. For instance, in Afrikaans this is [f],
in Xhosa [t] and in German [s]. Would like to get as much data about this
as possible from different L2 Englishes, pidgins, creoles etc. References
would also be welcome.

2. In some L1 varieties of South African English one finds with things like
'a pants' 'this pants' (ie the 'single item with two parts' is treated as
singular). Doesn't work in all contexts, so that 'this glasses' is very
odd. Interestingly one now finds a singular plural contrast between, believe
it or not, 'a panty' 'this panty' and 'panties' 'these panties'. Are there
any other L1 type of Englishes that show this? (PS Why 'pants' 'panties'
but not 'bras'?)

David Gough
Department of Linguistics
University of the Western Cape
South Africa
Mail to author|Respond to list|Read more issues|LINGUIST home page|Top of issue