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LINGUIST List 22.4495

Thu Nov 10 2011

Qs: Seeking recent phonemic neutralizations

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        1.     Andrew Wedel , Seeking recent phonemic neutralizations

Message 1: Seeking recent phonemic neutralizations
Date: 10-Nov-2011
From: Andrew Wedel <wedelu.arizona.edu>
Subject: Seeking recent phonemic neutralizations
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We are collecting a database of diachronically recent phonemic
neutralizations (mergers or deletions) in languages for which there
exist reasonably good corpora and associated word-lists. The
neutralizations can be context-sensitive or context-free, but for our
purposes, the neutralization needs to be complete in some dialect of
the language. The corpus needs to have a phonemic transcription (or
the orthography needs to be shallow enough that we can reconstruct
one); it needs to encode the pre-neutralization state of the language
either in the phonemic transcription or the orthography; and it needs to
reflect (other than the neutralization) the phonemic system of the
dialect in which the neutralization has taken place. As an example, for
the LOT~THOUGHT and PIN~PEN mergers that have taken place in
varieties of American English, we can use an American English
phonemic transcription of the English portion of the CELEX database.
To see a regularly updated list of the neutralizations and associated
corpora that we currently have, please point your browser to


We currently have neutralizations in English, German, Dutch, French,
Slovak, Korean and Hong Kong Cantonese. If you have any
suggestions for additions to this list, please contact Andy Wedel at

Linguistic Field(s): Historical Linguistics

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