Re: Some pronunciation questions
- Thank you very much for your info bout this.
I guess the pronunciation of gothic is a part that is as difficult
and important to learn as the rest.
I also now realize that I know very little about pronunciation, both
in gothic and on the whole.
--- In email@example.com, "llama_nom" <600cell@...> wrote:
> Some background:
> Braune [
> mages ].
> Wright [
> mages ].
> Streitberg [ http://www.wulfila.be/lib/streitberg/1920/ ].
> Although these text books disagree with each other on some points,
> they're all worth a read. The two German ones especially go into
> the reasoning behind their proposed pronunciations and mention
> alternative proposals. For pronunciation, Braune seems the most
> reasonable to me on the whole (note: I have a later edition to the
> one online at the Germanic Lexicon Project, expanded slightly),
> although Streitberg has some extra interesting details.
> > g [x], ch as in 'Bach' finally, or before s, t.
> > This means dags and dag is pronounced with [x]
> As Wright suggests. The reasoning behind this is partly for the
> sake of symmetry. /b/ and /d/ are usually spelt <f> and <þ>
> or before s, t. The spelling <magt> might imply that <g> could
> sometimes stand for a voiceless sound. Elsewhere /g/ is written
> before /t/, e.g. <mahta> versus <mag>, <ohta> versus <og>. But if
> Wright is right, it's strange that <g> and <h> are never confused
> the end of a word except for <aig> and <aih>, where the confusion
> goes throughout the paradigm. Still, this is the system I'm
> following till I know better.
> > but daga and dagis with
> > [g].
> By <g> in "north German sagen", it means a fricative [G], see the
> chart of upper-case symbols here [ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/X-
> SAMPA ]. That is the pronunciation suggested by Wright. In favour
> of a fricative pronunciation is the fact that Latin writers
> sometimes miss out the <g> between vowels, when spelling Gothic
> names, especially when it comes before a front vowel. Streitberg's
> reasoning based on "intonation" is considered flawed nowadays, but
> don't understand it, so I can't comment.
> > D is [ð] and b is [v] medially after vowel or diphthong.
> > OK for ð, but b as v...that means hlaiba has [v].
> > Well, this also means naubaimbair has v...but that's a exception.
> Braune (or at least the edition I have) lists Gothic personal names
> where medial /b/ is spelt by Latin writers with a <v>. Wright
> suggests a voiced bilabial fricative [B], as medially in Spanish,
> which sounds very similar.
> > E [ē], a as in 'gate'...as far as I know 'gate' is not
> pronounced as
> > [gēt] but more as [geit]...and I don't think they mean that
> mena is
> > pronounced as [meina].
> You're right, as far as the usual standard pronunciations of
> and American English go, although there are some dialects which do
> preserve the simple long vowel [e:]. I think the authors are just
> offering this as the nearest English equivalent, which is why they
> say "a rough guide to pronunciation".
> > H [x], ch as in 'Bach'....this goes for the combination ht and
> > with hr, hl etc. but alone? I wouldn't say hunds as [xunds].
> Lower down the page you may have noticed: "It is also likely that h
> is in Wulfila's time closer to the h of Modern English 'he' than it
> is to the ch of 'Bach', and similarly with hv." I use the
> system, based on what I've read in the textbooks mentioned above,
> but I'm open to any suggestions:
> hlaifs [xlaifs]
> hrains [xrains]
> hunds [hunts]
> slahan [slahan]
> hloh [xlo:x]
> hvaiwa [w_0aiwa]
> saihvan [sEw_0an]
> sahv [sax\]
> [ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/X-SAMPA ]
> > W as [u] when final...this I can agree with, but didn't know...is
> > like this? Waúrstw as [worstu]???
> An alternative suggestion favoured by the textbooks is that final
> <w> wasn't syllabic, but just indicates that the final consonant
> pronounced with final lip-rounding, thus:
> sagq [saNk_w]
> triggw [trig:_w]
> þiwadw [þiwað_w]
> In favour of a syllabic pronunciation is the spelling <engus> in
> Vienna-Salzburg codex. In favour of a non-syllablic pronunciation
> is the parallel with <sagq>, and the lack of any general spelling
> fluctuation between final <u> and <w>. But note the regular
> change /w/ > /u/ after a short monosyllabic root: PG *skadwaz > Go.
> skadus. The Vienna-Salzburg codex was written long after Wulfilas
> time and may indicate a change in Gothic pronunciation, or it might
> be due to confusion on the part of a High German speaker who
> transcribed the Gothic words.
> > Iu [íu], eu as in 'reuse'. Isn't this two syllables? If it's two
> > it aint no diphthong as I think it should be.
> You're absolutely right as far as my British English pronunciation
> goes [%r\i:"ju:s]. I also stress it on the second syllable. The
> Gothic sound is usually taken to have been a falling diphthong in
> words such as <biudan>; that is, with the emphasis on the first
> element of the diphthong. We can tell that it was a diphthong
> because some of the Gothic texts (though not all of them) follow
> rule that diphthongs are never split in writing at the end of a
> line. But in some words, according to Braune, <iu> does mark two
> syllables: niun, bi-uhts, ni-u, bi-u-gitai, sium (alternative
> spelling <sijum>).
> > I might be totaly wrongm but I thought iu was pronounced more as
> > as in use...no [i] as in re-. Biudan as [bíuðan] or as [bjuðan]???
> I don't know if that could be disproved, but the usual
> interpretation is that it was a falling diphthong, as originally in
> West and North Germanic, see above. Latin writers use <eu> in
> spelling names. If it was [ju] maybe Latin writers would have used
> <i> for the first element? (Not sure about that.) Much later, in
> Old Norse, it became the rising diphthong just as you describe and
> the second element was lengthened (and lowered before dentals in
> > OK...tell me what you think bout this...
> I think it's a bit of a mess! I think the explanations are not as
> clear as they could be, and that the reasoning behind them is in
> places illogical (see my recent posts). The English examples
> always ideal, for example <with> ends in a voiced consonant for
> English speakers. Maybe <think> would be a better example. 'Fat
> Tuesday' isn't so good because a lot of varieties of British
> have a palatal [t_j] or the affricate [tS] at the beginning of
> <tuesday>. I might have chosen 'hot tap'. But even these wouldn't
> work for everyone. If they had examples from a few languages it
> would lessen the chances of confusion.
> > Some words -- e.g. bliggw- 'scourge', glaggw- 'accurate', skuggw-
> 'mirror', triggw- 'faithful' -- may have contained a true
> g as in (a slow pronunciation of) English 'doggone', but this has
> probably given way to the sound [N] by the time of Wulfila's
> Probably? I don't remember reading this before. [g:] > [N] (or do
> they mean [Ng]?) seems unlikely in view of Latin spellings of the
> names Triggua, Trigguilla. <gg> is usually considered to have been
> an ambiguous spelling, standing for [g:] or [Ng] depending on the
> > By the same token, given the fact that the same spelling mistakes
> are made in several languages of the other branches of Germanic, it
> is possible that the distinctions were never actually as clean as
> the historical linguist would like.
> This is very vague. I don't know what they're referring to.
> > The resonants l, m, n, r may also function as vowels. For
> fugls 'bird', máiþms 'treasure', táikns 'token', ligrs 'bed'.
> Most accounts I've read agree, but some think that these were non-
> syllabic. The oldest Old English poetry apparently shows a stage
> the language before such consonants became syllabic, but then there
> are spellings in Jordanes that suggest that they were syllabic at
> this time in Gothic.
> But I quibble. It's still a nice thing to have online. Especially
> for the stuff on Crimean Gothic.
> Llama Nom