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196Re: i and y in Quenya: two phonemes or one?

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  • gentlebeldin
    Aug 9, 2002
      --- In lambengolmor@y..., Ales Bican <ales.bican@s...> wrote:

      > > This could rule out the possibility
      > > of allomorphs: they have to be variants of the same phoneme,
      > > predictable from the environment where they occur.
      >
      > **I am afraid I do not understand you here.
      It's just a reformulation: if only one variant is possible in a
      certain environment, it's predictable which one, knowing only the
      environment.

      > Well, I am somewhat off-topic. My point was that if _ly_ in
      > _-lye_ is a single sound (which I cannot either prove or
      > dissprove), it is not an instance of _y_ being in the same
      > position as _i_.

      That's what I meant. Even if we could distinguish it as a phoneme in
      this position, it wouldn't be the same /y/ as in _Yavanna_.

      > > The question whether a vocal and a consonant can be similar
      > > enough to count as allomorphs, is subjective. _y_ is a half-
      > > vowel, after all.
      >
      > **I am not sure again if I understand you. In Slovakian (a Slavic
      > language very similar to Czech) [i] and [j] are treated like
      > allomorphs, for instance.

      I meant that there may be different opinions on that matter. I tend
      to regard /i/ and /j/ in German as allomorphs, too.

      Hans
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