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150932Re: Evolution of Romance (was: **Answer to Pete**)

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  • Benct Philip Jonsson
    Feb 1, 2008
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      Yes it seems that Eastern Romance k' > tS and Western Romance k' > t'
      > ts are mutually exclusive developments. Of course this is only one
      point where Italian goes together with Balkan Romance, so there's
      nothing remarkable about it if it is so.

      I'm afraid I've cheated big in Rhodrese in that k' there shows the
      Western development and sk' the Eastern development. Perhaps it can be
      explained away so that sk' > st' > sts' > ss' > S but I must admit
      that it feels a bit ad hoc. However the temptation to get to use tx
      for /tS/ and sç (that's s + c-cedilla in case it gets garbled) for /S/
      in the same orthography was simply too great! ;-)

      The only thing I see speaking against a development g' > j > g' > dZ
      is Occam's razor! Clearly [g;] or [J\] and [j] can both develop out of
      and into each other, but to posit a to-and-fro development seems a bit
      suspicious. The relative infrequency of dj compared to tj is probably
      a better and sufficient explanation why the voiceless palatals develop
      differently in Western Romance.

      For all that I want an alveolar diacritic _a\ seems a poor choice
      unless a\ stands for some alveolar sound. I dislike _t for breathy
      voice for the same reason. To me _t for alveolar and _h\ for breathy
      voice would make much better sense. I guess I'll have to add that one
      to my list of 'BXS' modifications. Of course the only goal of BXS is
      to be inherently consistent, unlike Z-SAMPA and even less than CXS
      caring about backwards compatibility. This surely makes it nasty in
      some people's opinion. As for various lateral fricatives [x_l] etc.
      are fine with me, as there hardly can be any possible distinction
      between a laterally released fricative and a lateral fricative, since
      only a stop can be 'released' to begin with. By the same token I'm
      happy to use [4\_l] for alveolar lateral flap, since I need [l\] for
      alveopalatal lateral. Unicode includes Chao's symbols for alveopalatal
      stops, nasal and lateral, so BXS has a full series t\ d\ s\ z\ n\ l\.

      2008/2/1, John Vertical <johnvertical@...>:
      > On Wed, 30 Jan 2008 19:18:42 +0100, Benct Philip Jonsson wrote:
      > >I have wondered for long how k' merged with tj in Gallo- and
      > >Ibero-Romance and come to the conclusion that it was *not*
      > >via a progression k; > c > tS > ts but rather that k' merged
      > >with tj directly. It is believable in that at least to the
      > >naked ear the two palatalized sounds k' and t' sound much
      > >more similar to each other than the non-palatalized k and t.
      > You'd consider kj) > tS in Italian a separate development then?
      > >But how come then that when g' and d' merge they both become
      > >/dZ/ and not both /dz/? Perhaps simply because d' was so
      > >infrequent to begin with?
      > Regardless, you'd need to assume a rather asymmetric intermediate system
      > with tj) vs. gj).
      > Altho I suppose this could have happened at a stage before there were any
      > significant amounts of imported Germanic gw); then the precence of the third
      > voiceless velar kw) could have provided the push for kj) but not gj). But
      > then one is left to wonder why didn't it unround until new kj) and gj) had
      > developed (French) if at all (Spanish)? Or why didn't plain k do anything in
      > this chain?
      > >An older generation of Romanists thought that g'
      > >in all positions went through a [j] stage before becoming
      > >/dZ/, and that this together with a prestige pronunciation
      > >of the letter _z_ as d' worked against a merger. It is
      > >notable that the lenited reflex of k' is _dz_ but that of g'
      > >is [j]!
      > So what does speak against this route? Far as I kno (admittedly not all that
      > far) it seems to fit the data just as well, and explains the t' <> g'
      > asymmetry with fewer assumptions.
      > >(There is no "alveolar" diacritic in CXS: [tdnszl] are
      > >alveolar by default. I guess the 'retracted' [_-] diacritic
      > >could be used as well (which would then agree with the way
      > >Dravidianists mark alveolar consonants with a subscript
      > >minus); [d_+] could then mean a "postdental" [d] as opposed
      > >to interdental [d_d] if one wants to.)
      > To go on a slight tangent, this is another place where a more unified
      > conlang community would be helpful. The ZBB has worked out ASCII
      > transcriptions for everything in the Extended IPA as well, and many other
      > things (non-alveolar lateral frics, epiglottal trill, etc). Their Z-SAMPA
      > symbol for "explicitly alveolar" (corresponding to the ExtIPA dubbel
      > underline) is [_a\]. I would understand [d_-] to mean a postalveolar voiced
      > stop!
      > John Vertical

      / BP
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