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RE: [Lambengolmor] Quenya intervocalic -d-'s revisited

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  • Pavel Iosad
    Hello, Ivan wrote: (not that I am not convinced...) [...] ... I m no expert at Persian, but as regards the first two (actually three) examples, the syntactic
    Message 1 of 15 , Jun 1, 2002
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      Hello,

      Ivan wrote:

      (not that I am not convinced...)

      [...]
      > > It doesn't seem likely that antonyms should be homonyms in a
      > > language (oh yes, there's Mandarin _míng[2]_ which means both
      > > 'bright' and 'dark', but still...).
      >
      > There's also Mandarin _guai1_ (1) `obedient, well-behaved';
      > (2) contrary, in spite of'. Or Russian _zadut'_ `blow out
      > (a candle); blow in (a blast-furnace)', _zalechit' `heal (a
      > wound); doctor (a patient) to death'. Or Persian <qarIb>
      > `close, kin' and its homophone <.garIb> `strange, alien'.

      I'm no expert at Persian, but as regards the first two (actually three)
      examples, the syntactic properties and/or context are sufficient to make
      clear which meaning is intended. As regards Quenya, clearly the
      distributive properties of the two will be identical (but hey, there's
      the case system which can be used for disambiguation after all!).

      > Or the famous English examples such as _cleave_.

      Again, there are the sytactic properties ('cleave to sth.' vs. 'cleave
      sth.')

      [...]
      OK, so we can establish that the two roots may have fallen together.
      Anyone has suggestions on which cases to use with which _*ara_?
      (Allative vs. Ablative? Dative vs. Ablative? Or something completely
      different?)

      [...]
      > I think _Aldudénië_ has to be a misreading or a miswriting,

      For what? :-))

      > or perhaps a word wrongly interpreted as Quenya.

      What is it then? Obviously not Telerin - no _*#g-_!

      Pavel
      --
      Pavel Iosad pavel_iosad@...

      'I am a philologist, and thus a misunderstood man'
      --JRR Tolkien, _The Notion Club Papers_
    • Pavel Iosad
      Hello All, ... Which leads us to the problem of a proper phonological analysis of Quenya. To wit: are the nasalised voiced stops /mb nd ñg/ single phonemes,
      Message 2 of 15 , Jun 7, 2002
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        Hello All,

        Answering my question on Quenya intervocalic -d-'s, Ivan wrote:

        > The prime directive is: No /d/ in Quenya
        > except in the combinations /ld nd rd/ (LR:1155).

        Which leads us to the problem of a proper phonological analysis of
        Quenya. To wit: are the 'nasalised' voiced stops /mb nd ñg/ single
        phonemes, or biphonemic sequences?

        I hold it is the latter.

        But evidence is scanty, and I would like to discuss this question with a
        more knowledgeable company. So what would the assembly's opinion be,
        taking into account the following pieces of evidence:

        1) Consistent use of the word _combinations_ in Appendix E when
        referring to Grades 2 and 4 seems to argue that the sequence is
        biphonemic.

        2) These groups were clearly considered "long" for purposes of stress in
        early (and later) Sindarin, as per LR:1089 (it appears I am using a
        different edition than Ivan above). This would imply that in the
        structure of a word like _*periandath_ the _a_ in the penult qualifies
        as a vowel followed by two consonants, ergo /nd/ is biphonemic. This
        meets two objections - even early Sindarin is not Quenya (though I'd
        assume the phonological workings of the two would be exceptionally
        similar), and the second of a more fundamental nature. If we assume /nd/
        is monophonemic, the stress would still fall on the penult in this case,
        since /nd/ (be it mono- or biphonemic) is an impermissible onset, since
        no word in Quenya begins with it. On yet another hand, this latter
        argument could be taken as evidence for the biphonemic status of the
        group in question, as the restriction could then be explained in terms
        of the restriction on initial clusters in Quenya.

        3) There is little reason to distinguish /nd/ from /ld/ and /rd/. The
        latter are clearly biphonemic. It would then seem that a voiced stop is
        in a strong position when clustered with an alveolar sonorant. It is
        unclear whether /b/ shifted to /v/ after /l/ as a matter of some later
        dialect, or of a regular phonological process (since it appears that the
        Elves themselves did use _lb_ (LR:1095)). To clarify: /g/ shifted to a
        voiced /h/ regularly in Ukrainian and southern Russian dialects,
        however, there was no process of a regular voiced stop > homorganic
        voiced fricative shift. The only argument to see nasalisation as
        phonemically relevant attribute is its typological justification.
        Otherwise, we could as well argue that /ld/ is a phoneme while /nd/ and
        /rd/ are biphonemic. This doesn't seem likely at all

        4) However, there are clear cases of metathesis (e.g. in the past tense
        of basic verbs). A biphonemic sequence yielding a single phoneme is not
        at all impossible (cf. the conduct of Slavic *tj and *dj). Why would
        *_tek-ne_ yield *_tencë_? An answer might be positing not a metathesis
        (i.e. not the development of two sounds), but a nasalisation of the last
        consonant of a CVC- root as a phonological process a bit like the Irish
        attenuation and broadening (caolú and leathnú). Such an interpretation
        seems to be an argument for the monophonemic status.

        Overall, I still think the biphonemic interpretation is the better one,
        not the least because it is the less complex one. I am sure there is
        more to it than the outline above.

        Any comments?

        Pavel
        --
        Pavel Iosad pavel_iosad@...

        'I am a philologist, and thus a misunderstood man'
        --JRR Tolkien, _The Notion Club Papers_
      • Candon McLean
        ... They can only be biphonemic. The question is are they coarticulated or not? For example, Ladefoged ignores phonemes like [tS] and [d3] in the IPA, in
        Message 3 of 15 , Jun 7, 2002
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          --- Pavel Iosad <pavel_iosad@...> wrote:

          > Which leads us to the problem of a proper phonological analysis of
          > Quenya. To wit: are the 'nasalised' voiced stops /mb nd �g/ single
          > phonemes, or biphonemic sequences?

          They can only be biphonemic. The question is are they coarticulated
          or not? For example, Ladefoged ignores "phonemes" like [tS] and [d3]
          in the IPA, in fact they aren't in the IPA, because his phonetic work
          has shown that they are two sounds that are coarticulated (see
          Ladefoged _A Course in Phonetics_ 1975. 4th edition). Clusters like
          [mb], found in some African languages etc., are also not in the IPA
          because they are coarticulated.

          I believe by phoneme you mean coarticulate and by biphonemic you mean
          two independently articulated segments.

          A crucial test (which may be beyond us) is to see if the cluster
          splits into a coda and an onset:

          e.g. /lambe/ > 1. [lam.be] or 2. [la.mbe].

          If (1) then the cluster has two independently articualted segments;
          if (2) then the cluster is coarticulated and thus a "phoneme."

          An example from English is 'judging:' /d3Ud3 + Ing/ > [d3U.d3Ing],
          where /ng/ = the sound ingma, i.e. the velar nasal. In the English
          example it's clear that /d3/ is coarticulated as the sound does not
          split across syllable boundaries.

          I don't remember if Tolkien has given us discriptions of the
          syllabification of these clusters. If he hasn't then we need to
          listen again to his recordings (but these maybe inaccurate as he
          wasn't a native speaker of Quenya, alas).

          Candon


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        • pavel_iosad
          Hello, ... Evidence? :-) I do agree, but still... :-) ... As a matter of fact, I was referring to the phoneme as a unit of structural analysis (which And
          Message 4 of 15 , Jun 7, 2002
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            Hello,
            Candon wrote:
            > > Which leads us to the problem of a proper phonological analysis
            > > of Quenya. To wit: are the 'nasalised' voiced stops /mb nd ñg/
            > > single phonemes, or biphonemic sequences?
            >
            > They can only be biphonemic.

            Evidence? :-) I do agree, but still... :-)

            > I believe by phoneme you mean coarticulate and by biphonemic you
            > mean two independently articulated segments.

            As a matter of fact, I was referring to the phoneme as a unit of
            structural analysis (which And rejects, just don't beat me now :-))
            and not as a segment in the speech.

            > A crucial test (which may be beyond us) is to see if the cluster
            > splits into a coda and an onset:
            >
            > e.g. /lambe/ > 1. [lam.be] or 2. [la.mbe].
            >
            > If (1) then the cluster has two independently articualted segments;
            > if (2) then the cluster is coarticulated and thus a "phoneme."

            I believe coarticulation in Quenya at least isn't the primary test,
            as demonstrated by the fact that the Quenya _qu_, which was
            pronounced as a cluster (in the Third Age at least), was still
            permitted word-initially, demonstrating it was not a cluster
            phonologically.

            Besides, the syllabification test allows both interpretations, as
            the whole of the /nd/ group obviously is included in the prceding
            syllable, as per the Maximum Onset Principle. Quenya words do not
            start in /d/, ergo /d/ is an impermissible onset. Ditto with /nd/,

            Pavel
            --
            Pavel Iosad pavel_iosad@...

            'I am a philologist, and thus a misunderstood man'
            --JRR Tolkien, _The Notion Club Papers_
          • Candon McLean
            Hi, ... The evidence is in acoustic phonetics which shows overlapping wave-forms for sounds like [tS], i.e. [t] peaks and before its wave has ended [S] begins.
            Message 5 of 15 , Jun 8, 2002
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              Hi,

              --- pavel_iosad <pavel_iosad@...> wrote:

              >>> Which leads us to the problem of a proper phonological analysis
              >>> of Quenya. To wit: are the 'nasalised' voiced stops /mb nd �g/
              >>> single phonemes, or biphonemic sequences?

              Candon wrote:
              >> They can only be biphonemic.

              Pavel wrote:
              > Evidence? :-) I do agree, but still... :-)

              The evidence is in acoustic phonetics which shows overlapping
              wave-forms for sounds like [tS], i.e. [t] peaks and before its wave
              has ended [S] begins.

              I believe this work was started in the 50's and 60's at Edinburgh,
              which perhaps means Tolkien was aware of it.

              Candon wrote:
              >> I believe by phoneme you mean coarticulated and by biphonemic you
              >> mean two independently articulated segments.

              Pavel wrote:
              > As a matter of fact, I was referring to the phoneme as a unit of
              > structural analysis (which And rejects, just don't beat me now :-))
              > and not as a segment in the speech.

              The acoustic analysis is clear that this isn't so, but for
              convenience and a shorthand lable, perhaps we could call
              coarticulated segments a phoneme (as long as we remember that they
              are not).

              Candon wrote:
              >> A crucial test (which may be beyond us) is to see if the cluster
              >> splits into a coda and an onset:
              >> e.g. /lambe/ > 1. [lam.be] or 2. [la.mbe].
              >> If (1) then the cluster has two independently articualted segments;
              >> if (2) then the cluster is coarticulated and thus a "phoneme."

              Pavel wrote:
              > I believe coarticulation in Quenya at least isn't the primary test,
              > as demonstrated by the fact that the Quenya _qu_, which was
              > pronounced as a cluster (in the Third Age at least), was still
              > permitted word-initially, demonstrating it was not a cluster
              > phonologically.

              I'm not sure I follow this. In English we have word initial /kw/ and
              it is biphonemic. Quenya <qu> seems to be of the same sort.

              Pavel wrote:
              > Besides, the syllabification test allows both interpretations, as
              > the whole of the /nd/ group obviously is included in the prceding
              > syllable, as per the Maximum Onset Principle. Quenya words do not
              > start in /d/, ergo /d/ is an impermissible onset. Ditto with /nd/,

              I'm not sure it's obvious. It's true that Quenya only allows
              palatalized or labialized consonant clusters word initially, but what
              happens word internally isn't clear.

              So, your claim is because /d/ is never an onset /nd/ will not split
              word internally. I don't believe this _has_ to be true. But let's
              say it is. What about the cluster /nt/? /t/ is allowed in onset
              position. So the syllabification of a word like _tintalle_ > 1.
              [tin.tal.le], or 2. [tint.al.le] will help us decide if clusters are
              coarticulated or not.

              Perhaps we can make an argument based on Tolkien's asthetic tastes to
              help us decide. It's clear that Tolkien was interested in creating a
              euphonic language. Which is the more euphonic syllabification of
              Quenya _sinda_? 1. [sin.da] or 2. [sind.a] It seems clear to me
              that (1) is more euphonic, and it is easier to articulate (the same
              can be said of _tintalle_(1)above. Ease of articulation also seems
              to have been important to Tolkien (cf. /n/ + /s/ > [ss] (e.g.
              _Elessar_).

              Notice also that when segments assimilate (for ease of
              articulation) they don't disappear. This would indicate that both
              segments [ss] in _Elessar_ are pronounced (as compared with
              _*elesar_.

              If both segments are indeed pronounced, this in turn seems to
              indicate that the cluster is _not_ coarticulated as the best way to
              make [ss] salient (i.e. perceivable) is to split the cluster [s.s]


              If we don't have Tolkien's ideas on syllabification (and I haven't
              had time to look into it), then his desire for euphony and ease of
              articulation perhaps can shed some light on whether quenya clusters
              are coarticulated, i.e. "phonemic," or not.

              Candon

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            • pavel_iosad
              Hello, I m still sceptical about acoustic evidence, nevertheless. Candon wrote: [...] ... But I was trying to find out exactly whether they are or are not! :-)
              Message 6 of 15 , Jun 8, 2002
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                Hello,

                I'm still sceptical about acoustic evidence, nevertheless.

                Candon wrote:
                [...]
                > The acoustic analysis is clear that this isn't so, but for
                > convenience and a shorthand lable, perhaps we could call
                > coarticulated segments a phoneme (as long as we remember that they
                > are not).

                But I was trying to find out exactly whether they are or are not! :-)


                > > I believe coarticulation in Quenya at least isn't the primary
                > > test, as demonstrated by the fact that the Quenya _qu_, which
                > > was pronounced as a cluster (in the Third Age at least), was
                > > still permitted word-initially, demonstrating it was not a
                > > cluster phonologically.
                >
                > I'm not sure I follow this. In English we have word initial /kw/
                > and it is biphonemic. Quenya <qu> seems to be of the same sort.

                Quenya doesn't allow initial clusters at all. Thus, _qu_, which is
                permissible initially, is _not_ a cluster

                > I'm not sure it's obvious. It's true that Quenya only allows
                > palatalized or labialized consonant clusters word initially, but
                > what happens word internally isn't clear.

                I'd say that the palatalized and labilaized sounds are precisely
                monophonemic.

                > So, your claim is because /d/ is never an onset /nd/ will not split
                > word internally. I don't believe this _has_ to be true. But let's
                > say it is. What about the cluster /nt/? /t/ is allowed in onset
                > position.

                Good point, but it is obvious that the unvoiced stops have much
                fewer phonotactical restrcitions imposed on them than the voiced
                ones.

                On the ohter hand, this example amply demonstrates that /mp nt ng/
                are biphonemic sequences. This would mean that plosives
                (phonemically) present a rather strange system /p/ ~ /b/ ~ /mb/.
                Such a system is highly untypological. The only structurally
                analogous situation I can think is the traditional PIE
                reconstruction (substitute aspiration ofr nasalisation). But that
                may precisely have been the inspiration! It would be "very
                Tolkien" :-)

                [...]
                > If we don't have Tolkien's ideas on syllabification (and I haven't
                > had time to look into it), then his desire for euphony and ease of
                > articulation perhaps can shed some light on whether quenya clusters
                > are coarticulated, i.e. "phonemic," or not.

                Still, I do not see any direct correlation between coarticulation
                and monopohnemic status.

                But perhaps the better-learned ones here will clarify it for me...:-)

                Pavel
                --
                Pavel Iosad pavel_iosad@...

                'I am a philologist, and thus a misunderstood man'
                --JRR Tolkien, _The Notion Club Papers_
              • Ivan A Derzhanski
                ... [...] ... [...] ... Acoustic phonetics is not about phonemes at all. Whatever sequence of wave forms the language treats as a phoneme is by virtue of that
                Message 7 of 15 , Jun 8, 2002
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                  Candon McLean wrote:
                  > --- pavel_iosad <pavel_iosad@...> wrote:
                  > >>> are the 'nasalised' voiced stops /mb nd сg/
                  > >>> single phonemes, or biphonemic sequences?
                  [...]
                  > >> They can only be biphonemic.
                  [...]
                  > The evidence is in acoustic phonetics which shows overlapping
                  > wave-forms for sounds like [tS], i.e. [t] peaks and before
                  > its wave has ended [S] begins.

                  Acoustic phonetics is not about phonemes at all. Whatever sequence
                  of wave forms the language treats as a phoneme is by virtue of that
                  fact a phoneme.

                  > > I believe coarticulation in Quenya at least isn't the primary test,
                  > > as demonstrated by the fact that the Quenya _qu_, which was
                  > > pronounced as a cluster [...], was still permitted word-initially,
                  > > demonstrating it was not a cluster phonologically.
                  >
                  > I'm not sure I follow this. In English we have word initial /kw/
                  > and it is biphonemic. Quenya <qu> seems to be of the same sort.

                  English allows word-initial (and generally syllable-initial)
                  clusters. Quenya doesn't. So the evidence of English isn't
                  automatically relevant to Quenya.

                  > Pavel wrote:
                  > > Besides, the syllabification test allows both interpretations, as
                  > > the whole of the /nd/ group obviously is included in the prceding
                  > > syllable, as per the Maximum Onset Principle. Quenya words do not
                  > > start in /d/, ergo /d/ is an impermissible onset. Ditto with /nd/,
                  [...]
                  > So, your claim is because /d/ is never an onset /nd/ will not split
                  > word internally. I don't believe this _has_ to be true.

                  As a matter of fact, it does not. Think of Finnish medial /ht/.
                  It has to split as /h/+/t/, because a cluster can be neither an
                  onset nor a coda, but we have to live with the fact that /h/ can
                  be a coda of a non-final syllable (though not a final one).

                  --Ivan
                • fr3dr1k_s
                  ... Few sounds in speech are *not* coarticulated in that sense. For example, by anticipatory coarticulation, /k/ has lip rounding in the word coo . The
                  Message 8 of 15 , Jun 8, 2002
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                    Candon McLean wrote:

                    >>> They can only be biphonemic.
                    >> Evidence? :-) I do agree, but still... :-)
                    >The evidence is in acoustic phonetics which shows
                    >overlapping wave-forms for sounds like [tS], i.e. [t] peaks and
                    >before its wave has ended [S] begins.

                    Few sounds in speech are *not* coarticulated in that sense. For
                    example, by anticipatory coarticulation, /k/ has lip rounding in the
                    word "coo". The labialized feature of the vowel is anticipated in
                    the realization of the velar stop, [k^w]. That would be an example
                    of coarticulation. But "biphonemic" of course refers to a
                    sequence of two phonemes. These phonemes may or may not
                    be further analysed into sequences of sounds on the phonetic
                    level, but that is irrelevant here. It is important to remember that
                    phonemes, while the smallest units of speech *phonologically*
                    speaking, are not necessarily "atomic" *phonetically* speaking
                    but may be broken down into smaller segments of sound.
                    Affricates are sequences of homorganic sounds on the phonetic
                    level that make up single units on the phonological level: they
                    are phonemes (no scare quotes). In his _Course in Phonetics_
                    earlier referred to, Ladefoged points out that "From the point of
                    view of a phonologist considering the sound patterns of English,
                    the palato-alveolar affricates are plainly single units" (3rd ed.,
                    63). I don't have the 4th ed. though.

                    Sorry if I missed your point and just reiterated the obvious.

                    /Fredrik Ström
                  • Candon McLean
                    Ivan and Fredrik both wrote that phonetic analysis isn t relevant to phonemes (or something similar to that effect). I agree. My mistake. Indeed sounds like
                    Message 9 of 15 , Jun 8, 2002
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                      Ivan and Fredrik both wrote that phonetic analysis isn't relevant to
                      phonemes (or something similar to that effect).

                      I agree. My mistake. Indeed sounds like [tS] are phonemes.

                      The point I was trying to make is that these kind of complex phonemes
                      with coarticulated sounds can't be split, and so if we wanted to test
                      whether Quenya clusters are phonemic or not, we should be able to do
                      so by focusing on the coarticulated properties of these sounds (like
                      affricates, etc).

                      Candon


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                    • anthonyappleyard
                      Apart from _Aldudenie_, what known instances of Quenya _d_ between vowels are known? If _Aldudenie_ is the only example, perhaps it is a stray mistake by
                      Message 10 of 15 , Jun 11, 2002
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                        Apart from _Aldudenie_, what known instances of Quenya _d_ between
                        vowels are known?

                        If _Aldudenie_ is the only example, perhaps it is a stray mistake by
                        Tolkien and if he had lived longer he would have found and corrected
                        it.

                        [It has been suggested many times before that _Aldudenie_, composed
                        by a Vanyarin elf, is a Vanyarin, not Quenya, title. Carl]
                      • Eleder
                        ... The best discussion I can remember about the possibility that *_-dénie_ was the Vanyarin cognate of Noldorin _nainie_, lament , is the #5885 message of
                        Message 11 of 15 , Jun 12, 2002
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                          > [It has been suggested many times before that _Aldudenie_, composed
                          > by a Vanyarin elf, is a Vanyarin, not Quenya, title. Carl]

                          The best discussion I can remember about the possibility that *_-dénie_
                          was the Vanyarin cognate of Noldorin _nainie_, "lament", is the #5885
                          message of Elfling, by Ales Bican:

                          http://groups.yahoo.com/group/elfling/message/5885

                          As he said, it's hard to believe that it could be a typo by Tolkien,
                          since the word _Aldudénie_ appears in different manuscripts and
                          texts carefully revised by Tolkien.

                          By the way, I introduce myself in this list, as member of the
                          Lambenor Spanish-speaking mailing-list, and the Team of
                          Languages of the Spanish Tolkien Society.

                          ------
                          Eleder

                          "La fantasía se inocula en tu intelecto cual vacuna contra la sórdida
                          subsistencia, cuando el aguijón de John Ronald Reuel Tolkien se
                          inserta en los patológicos hemisferios cerebrales de todo lector que
                          padezca el acierto de acceder a su terapéutica saga."
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