LINGUIST List 5.849

Wed 27 Jul 1994

Sum: Linguists' judgments, /x/ -> /k/ in final position

Editor for this issue: <>


  1. Joyce Tang Boyland, Linguists' Judgments
  2. , Summary: /x/ -> /k/ in final position

Message 1: Linguists' Judgments

Date: Thu, 21 Jul 94 17:58:03 -0Linguists' Judgments
From: Joyce Tang Boyland <jtangcogsci.Berkeley.EDU>
Subject: Linguists' Judgments

A long long time ago I posted a question similar to Dick Hudson's, asking
whether there was work on how informants' (esp. linguists') judgments change
over time and exposure. But (to my discredit), I never did post a summary.
Here, very belatedly, is a summary of the (little) information I received:
there was
a) Carson Schutze's Univ. of Toronto M.A. thesis
 on the psychology of linguistic judgments;
 very nice thesis, but nothing definitive on
 this particular issue;
b) memories of Haj Ross naming the "scanting out"
 phenomenon, in which too much thinking about
 certain judgments renders one incapable of
 making the judgment at all;
c) a psychological effect called "semantic satiation",
 the data on which seemed to me to be only marginally
 relevant to syntactic judgments, though the idea might
 possibly be extendable to cover syntactic judgments.

Joyce Tang Boyland (
Mail to author|Respond to list|Read more issues|LINGUIST home page|Top of issue

Message 2: Summary: /x/ -> /k/ in final position

Date: Wed, 27 Jul 94 00:01:22 EDSummary: /x/ -> /k/ in final position
From: <>
Subject: Summary: /x/ -> /k/ in final position

The only clear examples involving a regular change of /x/ to
/k/ in final position so far involve some Montenegrin dialects
of Serbo-Croation (thanks to Wayles Browne for the references
on this) and in some southern dialects of Polish (which I
dug up myself). The reason I was interested, by the way 9since
some of you asked), was because /x/ can come from /s/ (as it
does in these two languages, in fact), so this would give me
final /k/ from /s/. And that would be an analogue to the highly
controversial change of Proto-Indo-European final */s/ to /kh/
in Armenian, originally mentioned but dismissed by Hubschmann
(who discovered the true place of Armenian within Indo-European)
and then proposed by Holger Pedersen (whom some of you may know
as the grandfather of the glottalic theory of Indo-European and/or
as the creator of the original version of the Nostratic theory
and the coiner of the term 'Nostratisch').

I would like to thank everybody who wrote in in response to
my query.

Alexis Manaster Ramer
Mail to author|Respond to list|Read more issues|LINGUIST home page|Top of issue