Featured Linguist!

Jost Gippert: Our Featured Linguist!

"Buenos dias", "buenas noches" -- this was the first words in a foreign language I heard in my life, as a three-year old boy growing up in developing post-war Western Germany, where the first gastarbeiters had arrived from Spain. Fascinated by the strange sounds, I tried to get to know some more languages, the only opportunity being TV courses of English and French -- there was no foreign language education for pre-teen school children in Germany yet in those days. Read more



Donate Now | Visit the Fund Drive Homepage

Amount Raised:

$34890

Still Needed:

$40110

Can anyone overtake Syntax in the Subfield Challenge ?

Grad School Challenge Leader: University of Washington


Publishing Partner: Cambridge University Press CUP Extra Publisher Login
amazon logo
More Info


New from Oxford University Press!

ad

What is English? And Why Should We Care?

By: Tim William Machan

To find some answers Tim Machan explores the language's present and past, and looks ahead to its futures among the one and a half billion people who speak it. His search is fascinating and important, for definitions of English have influenced education and law in many countries and helped shape the identities of those who live in them.


New from Cambridge University Press!

ad

Medical Writing in Early Modern English

Edited by Irma Taavitsainen and Paivi Pahta

This volume provides a new perspective on the evolution of the special language of medicine, based on the electronic corpus of Early Modern English Medical Texts, containing over two million words of medical writing from 1500 to 1700.


Query Details


Query Subject:   Query re syllabic consonants
Author:   Zoe Toft
Submitter Email:  click here to access email

Query:   Dear all,

I am a PhD student at the school of Oriental and African Studies in London,
UK and am looking for references on languages with so called syllabic
consonants. Bell (1978) cites 85 languages with syllabic consonants but some
of his original sources have been liberally interpreted for inclusion in
this category and very few provide any sort of phonetic data (which is no
surprising given the age of many of his sources). Therefore I am trying to
update his database and would appreciate your input.
Blevins (1995:220) provides a table on the parametric variation in syllabic
segments, ranging from Kabardian, which only allows non high vowels as
syllabic segments, to Imdlawn Tashlhiyt Berber which allows all types of
segments, including fricatives and stops, to be syllabic segments. I would
like to find more examples for inclusion in her table: Do you know of
languages which allow for rhotic but not lateral or nasal sonorants as
syllabic constituents (cf Sanskrit)? Or languages which allow for fricative
syllabic consonants, but not stops (cf Dakelh/Carrier)?. I would be
particularly interested to hear of a language where voicing plays a role in
the potential of a segment to be syllabic: if we accept a general version of
the sonority hierarchy (e.g. Katamba 1989:104), voiced segments are more
sonorant than voiceless ones and thus one could conceive of a language
which, for example, allows voiced fricative syllabic stops but not voiceless
ones.

Please send suggestions and references to me at:

109299@soas.ac.uk

If there is interest I will post a summary on the list.

Many thanks,

Zoe Tof


Bell, A. (1978) Syllabic consonants. In Greenberg, J. (Ed.) Universals of
Human Language. pp 153-201
Blevins, J. (1995) The Syllable in Phonological Theory. In Goldsmith, J. The
Handbook of Phonological Theory. pp 206-244
Katamba, F. (1989) An Introduction to Phonology.




LL Issue: 12.1714
Date posted: 03-Jul-2001



Back

Sums main page