LINGUIST List 7.375

Mon Mar 11 1996

Qs: Basque coronal fricatives, French <y>, Length of words

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Directory

  1. Allan Wechsler, Articulation of Basque coronal fricatives.
  2. Bill Bennett, French <y>
  3. Ted Pedersen, Length of words significant?

Message 1: Articulation of Basque coronal fricatives.

Date: Thu, 07 Mar 1996 15:31:44 EST
From: Allan Wechsler <awechslebbn.com>
Subject: Articulation of Basque coronal fricatives.
Can anyone provide a detailed articulatory description of the Basque
coronal fricatives written "s" and "z"? My only Basque reference is
an English translation of Geren~o's "Nuevo Metodo", and the
description therein is infuriatingly vague.

A correspondent in Basque country (who by his own admission isn't a
phonetician) describes "z" essentially as a fortis dental [s], but his
description of "s" wasn't as enlightening.

Thank you.

-A
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Message 2: French <y>

Date: Thu, 07 Mar 1996 22:51:03 GMT
From: Bill Bennett <wab2hermes.cam.ac.uk>
Subject: French <y>

I would be very grateful for any EXEMPLIFIED views on the grammatical
category of the "pronoun" <y> in contemporary, standard French. The
problem of such an explanation would also apply to <en>, but <y> will
do for now!

Bill Bennett.
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Message 3: Length of words significant?

Date: Thu, 07 Mar 1996 14:54:45 CST
From: Ted Pedersen <pedersenseas.smu.edu>
Subject: Length of words significant?

I vaguely recall reading that the length of a word (in characters) is
a rough indication of how specialized or "meaningful" that word is. In
other words, longer words generally refer to more specific things or
actions whereas shorter words are more general.

Intuitively this idea has some appeal to me. I can think of many
supporting examples: "collie" is longer than "dog" and "hammer" is
longer than "tool". However, there seem to be any number of counter
examples: "jog" is shorter than "exercise" and "drink" is shorter than
"consume".

In any case, I'm rather intrigued by this issue and was wondering if
it has received any formal study. I'd appreciate any references or
hints that might be offered.


Regards,
Ted

* Ted Pedersen pedersenseas.smu.edu *
* http://www.seas.smu.edu/~pedersen/ *
* Department of Computer Science and Engineering, *
* Southern Methodist University, Dallas, TX 75275 (214) 768-3712 *
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