Quenya rg > ry before back vowels
- On 05.01.2004, at 23:27, Ales Bican wrote:
> I can hardly seeIn addition to Andreas Johansson's examples from Swedish, I might add
> motivation in the case of _targâ_ > Q _tarya_.
that in some German dialects the same happens. In the Rhineland area
you have /ju:t/ for SG (=Standard German) _gut_ etc. (the 'j' being
pronounced very similar to English 'y' but with some palatal friction).
In fact, moving towards the Ruhrgebiet you will hear /gürjen/ for the
PN 'Jürgen', that is /j/ and /g/ are exchanged. Phonetically, what
happens is that 'light', that is palatalized /g/ becomes a fricative
which naturally yields /j/. Now (for your point) velar or
non-palatalized /g/ should become /G/ (I mean the velar voiced back
spirant). However the opposition /G/ : /j/ is leveled in favour of /j/.
The reason for that would seem to be that a /G/ would normally be
pronounced further down the throat than /g/ hence in the process of
spirantization the point of articulation is moved either way (to the
front or the rear of the gum). Possibly because the process of
spirantization started with palatalized /g'/, i.e. g before front
vowels and was then analogously extended to all instances of /g/. Or
else, because the pronunciation of /g/ has already been somewhat
fronted before, so that the output is /j/ without significant movement
of the point of articulation, if any at all. In fact, there *is* a very
slight difference between /j/ in _jeck_ 'crazy' and _jut_ 'good', the
latter being pronounced somewhat more to the back, between the palatum
and the velum.
I think that a scenario along these lines looks rather likely. At any
rate, the development exhibited by Quenya is well documented in real
world languages, as /j/ = /y/ is attested even in the history of
English (although the output of /g/ +- pal. are different).
- Andreas Johansson wrote:
> I'd rather expect the words to syllabify as fel.ya and u.lun.do,I rather agree - I did not mean to imply where exactly the syllable
> Another possible internal explanation that struck me right now is that itYes, but it seems that Q phonology avoids _w_ and _y_ glides
> could simply be due to the different following vowel.
> [Comparison of derivatives of Etym. WÔ- (Q _o-_/_ó-_) and bases in WA-,
> such as WA3- (Q _vára_), WAN- (Q _vanya_), etc. exhibit this contrast.
> See also the statement in _Quendi and Eldar_ that initial _w-_ was "lost in
> Quenya before _ô_" (XI:367). (Please note that I make no promise of
> providing citations in the future!) CFH]
consistently before the phonologically related vowels: the rounded
vowels in case of _w_, and the highest vowel (_i_) in case of _y_.
I would not on this ground expect that the following _u_ is the reason
why _g_ disappears rather than changes into _y_ (we have "yulda",
so _yu_ is allowed).
- Ales Bican wrote:
> I can hardly see motivation in the case of _targâ_ > Q _tarya_.I can think of 2 possible motivations: analogy, or getting
the pronunciation nearer to the preceding dental/alveolar
_r_ (_l_). Together with the attempt to retain the long syllable
(which excludes just dropping the sound), because of
its being stressed.
- Quoting Lukas Novak <lukas.novak@...>:
> I would not on this ground expect that the following _u_ is the reasonI never said it was a _good_ explanation, but if it has any validity, surely
> why _g_ disappears rather than changes into _y_ (we have "yulda",
> so _yu_ is allowed).
the consonant dropped at the 'gh' stage, and 'gh' is nearer to 'u' than to 'a'.
One might also argue that what we need explained isn't why 'gh' dropped in
_ulundo_, which is the normal fate of 'gh' in Q, but why it failed to drop in
_tarya_ and _felya_. In this light your suggestion re: maintaining length of a
stressed syllable seems the more relevant explanation.