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Re: THEORY: Long and short vowels association.

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  • Christophe Grandsire-Koevoets
    ... Yep. It also explains the strange _ij_ letter for /ei/: it used to be written _ii_, but the second _i_ was lengthened in order not to confuse the digraph
    Message 1 of 47 , Jul 3, 2013
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      On 3 July 2013 19:53, J. 'Mach' Wust <j_mach_wust@...> wrote:

      >
      > Middle Dutch [ti:d] --> Modern Dutch [tɛid] ⟨tijd⟩ Middle English [ti:m]
      > -->
      > Modern English [taim] ⟨time⟩ Middle High German [tsi:t] --> Modern High
      > German [tsait] ⟨Zeit⟩
      >
      >
      Yep. It also explains the strange _ij_ letter for /ei/: it used to be
      written _ii_, but the second _i_ was lengthened in order not to confuse the
      digraph with _ü_, until it becomes undistinguishable from _j_.


      > I think English is the only of these languages where the original pairs of
      > long and short vowels are still perceived to be pairs of long and short
      > vowels.
      >
      >
      Correct. Dutch people don't feel any special connection between _i_ and
      _ij_, especially since Dutch has kept an actual long-short distinction
      (well, phonemically more like tense-lax, but the tense versions are often
      phonetically longer than the lax ones) among vowels, one that is actually
      marked in the orthography (as in _poot_ [po(ː)t]: "leg, paw, hoof" vs.
      _pot_ [pɔt]: "pot, jar"). In that case, the connection is between _ie_
      /i(ː)/ and _i_ /ɪ/. The only connection they feel is between _ij_ and _ei_,
      which both mark the same diphthong (indeed, it's one of issues of Dutch
      orthography to know which one to use in which word). Those two are even
      called similarly: _ij_ is called "lange /ei/" (long /ei/), while _ei_ is
      called "korte /ei/" (short /ei/).
      The only place where the origin of _ij_ as a mark for /iː/ is still apparent
      is in the word _bijzonder_: "special", which exceptionally is still
      pronounced with /i/ rather than /ei/: /biˈzɔndər/ rather than */beiˈzonder/.


      > As for Dutch, I do not know for sure, but I guess that "ij" is not
      > perceived
      > to be a "long i", but an independent letter. Or is it? I wonder.
      >
      >
      It is indeed an independent letter. It's actually a true letter, by the
      way, not a digraph (although it's often typed as such as it's not easily
      reached in normal keyboards), and it shares the 25th place in the alphabet
      with _y_ (and in handwriting, is often written in a way that looks like
      _ÿ_). That's why it's always capitalised as _IJ_ rather than _Ij_. Notice,
      by the way, that in Dutch the letter _ij_ actually contrasts with the
      digraph _ij_: while _bijenkorf_ (beehive) is written with the letter _ij_,
      _bijectie_ (bijection) is written with the digraph _ij_. This shows up in
      both pronunciation ([ˈbɛɪənkɔrf] vs. [biˈjɛktsi]) and hyphenation
      (_bij-en-korf_ vs _bi-jec-tie_).
      --
      Christophe Grandsire-Koevoets.

      http://christophoronomicon.blogspot.com/
      http://www.christophoronomicon.nl/
    • Anthony Miles
      ... IIRC, the composer of El Cid was convinced he was writing Latin, although his reasons may have been as much this is literature and not trash, therefore it
      Message 47 of 47 , Aug 22, 2013
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        >I could imagine that the same sort of thing might have occurred early in
        >Romance languages, only to be later obliterated by nationalism.
        >Nonetheless, it's not so much that writing is meant to be in a different
        >language, but that it should be reserved for a "higher" language. I think
        >Christophe's point is that writing in French or other Romance languages at
        >that time might be viewed the same way as writing in Ebonics would be to
        >many Anglophones today -- they consider it a vulgar and degenerate form of
        >the "pure" language, and thus reject the idea of serious writing in it.

        IIRC, the composer of El Cid was convinced he was writing Latin, although his
        reasons may have been as much "this is literature and not trash, therefore it
        must be Latin" as any linguistic criteria - the etymologies of Isidore of Seville
        don't inspire much confidence. The pre-1976 distinction in Greek between
        Katheravousa (sp?) and Demotic seems to be similar, although fuzzier. Even in
        English, when I compose a business letter or write something academic, I use
        a higher register than when I'm talking to one of my Scouts who's a 6th grader.
        Now, I must concede that my colloquial register is not much lower than my
        academic one, but that's because my default vocabulary is relatively high.
        Indeed, as one Ancient Egyptian said, "I know the language of the land; I do
        not speak like a common man; my speech is not full of "pa's"".

        Once I'm done with update of my conlang Siye, you will be able to see that
        the Simayamka and the Guild of Scholars are keenly aware of such
        distinctions - the "Moonies" advocate the (irregular) use of the ergative suffix
        -na on a nominative-accusative pronoun mu- for disambiguation of the nominative
        and accusative, while the majority of the Guild decries this usage as vulgar
        and tolerates the ambiguity, at least in independent pronouns. Even in regular
        nouns, the authorization (i.e. recognition of new cases) can take years.
        And if you use an authorized case in a contract, that is possible
        grounds for invalidation.
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