Re: What kinda a was used?
- Hi Fredrik,
We'll probably never know the exact pronunciation, but my guess would
be that there wasn't much difference in quality (if any) between short
and long 'a', at least when the Gothic alphabet was divised in the 4th
century. But clearly the alphabet was far from perfect as a record of
the sounds of the language, and <ai> and <au> each represented
multiple very different phonemes (judging by Latin spellings, <ai> at
least was a diphthong at least in stressed syllables). So as far as I
can see many varieties of German, English and Swedish long 'a' are
possibilities. There wasn't any regular scribal confusion between
long <a> and <au> believed to represent the long monophthong [O:].
Nor was long <a> so open that scribes could confuse it with <ai>
believed to represent the long monophthong [E:]. So anywhere between
those boundaries is possible.
--- In email@example.com, "Fredrik" <gadrauhts@h...> wrote:
> I'd like to know if someone knows what kinda a that was used. It
> help me a lot with my pronunciation, eventhough I mostly read silent
> and alone.
> In lack of knowledge I often use a inspiration from swedish.
> That is, a long 'a' is pronounced "closed" as in english father.
> And short 'a' is pronounced "open", almost as u in english cup.
> I also thought about a long open a as in german jahr, but it sounds
> too german.