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Re: [Lambengolmor] Yet more on voiced stops

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  • 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 1 of 15 , Jun 7 11:49 AM
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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 2 of 15 , Jun 7 11:31 PM
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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 3 of 15 , Jun 8 7:43 AM
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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 4 of 15 , Jun 8 9:49 AM
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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 5 of 15 , Jun 8 9:59 AM
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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 6 of 15 , Jun 8 11:56 AM
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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 7 of 15 , Jun 8 7:59 PM
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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 8 of 15 , Jun 11 2:03 AM
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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 9 of 15 , Jun 12 4:47 PM
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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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