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Rhotacism and stress (was Re: "Tolkien in Oxford")

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  • hisilome
    ... Hm. I thought the stress in _Mondósaresse_ would lie on the _e_ preceding the double consonant _ss_ (according to the pronunciation rules as for example
    Message 1 of 19 , Nov 4, 2006
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      --- In lambengolmor@yahoogroups.com, "Roman Rausch" <aranwe@...> wrote:
      >
      > And if *_Mondósar(e)_ contains SAR-, then what about rhotacism? We
      > know a rule that it did not occur if _s_ was followed by the stressed
      > vowel (VT44:20), which is the case in _Mondósaresse_, but not in the
      > deduced basic form *_Mondósar(e)_.

      Hm. I thought the stress in _Mondósaresse_ would lie on the _e_
      preceding the double consonant _ss_ (according to the pronunciation
      rules as for example given in the Appendices of _LotR_, although the
      example given there involves double _n_)?

      Or is the passage in VT44:20 to be interpreted to say that rhotacism
      did not occur when _s_ was followed by a stressed vowel, _regardless in
      which syllable_ (as long as it comes after the _s_)? From the example
      given, though, I get the impression that it has to follow the _s_
      _immediately_ for the rule (of no change from _s_ to _r_) to apply:
      _ósAnwe_.

      [That's my impression as well. CFH]

      David
    • Pavel Iosad
      Hello, ... This is the realm of guesswork: the rule, as given, does imply that we could have _s_/_r_ alternations in the paradigm relative to stress (witness
      Message 2 of 19 , Nov 6, 2006
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        Hello,

        > Hm. I thought the stress in _Mondósaresse_ would lie on the _e_
        > preceding the double consonant _ss_ (according to the
        > pronunciation rules as for example given in the Appendices of
        >_LotR_, although the example given there involves double _n_)?

        This is the realm of guesswork: the rule, as given, does imply that we
        could have _s_/_r_ alternations in the paradigm relative to stress
        (witness similar developments in Germanic due to Werner's law with
        rhotacised and non-rhotacised forms coinhabiting the same paradigm, as
        in OIcel _kjósa_, participle _kørinn_ 'to choose'). Indeed the very
        word _ósanwe_ could be expected to exhibit this alternation, of
        course. However, since no examples are provided by Tolkien, it is
        rather pointless to speculate whether the paradigm would be levelled
        to follow the nominative or remain true to the historical phonology;
        what we can do is only note that something like that could be
        possible.

        --Pavel
      • Beregond. Anders Stenström
        ... The catalogue has arrived, and everything is legible. The words above the second line of tengwar are: In Elvish language & script The note in green
        Message 3 of 19 , Nov 6, 2006
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          I wrote:

          > With some luck, the reproduction in the printed catalogue is
          > large enough to allow a more certain reading.

          The catalogue has arrived, and everything is legible. The
          words above the second line of tengwar are:

          "In Elvish language
          & script"

          The note in green reads:

          "Here are some specimens. A is a transliteration
          of English. But this happens not to be very decorative
          and lacks the XX <a-tehta> = a. B is a translation
          into Elvish (Quenya)"

          XX is a deleted "de", apparently the start of a
          repetitious "decorative". The a-tehta is underlined.

          (For the final note, in black, see Carl's reading
          earlier in this thread.)

          Suilad,

          Beregond, Anders Stenstr�m
        • j_mach_wust
          Beregond/Anders Stenström wrote: ... ... May I ask for the last sign of the second tengwar transcription of Mondósaresse ? On the scan available at
          Message 4 of 19 , Nov 6, 2006
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            Beregond/Anders Stenström wrote:
            ...
            > The catalogue has arrived, and everything is legible.
            ...

            May I ask for the last sign of the second tengwar transcription of
            'Mondósaresse'? On the scan available at Christie's, I can make out
            that there is the tengwa 'esse', but I cannot see whether there is an
            acute above, and--if there is an acute--whether the acute is below the
            upper stroke of esse or above.

            grüess
            j. 'mach' wust
          • hisilome
            ... My original objection was mainly to Roman s statement that in _Mondósaresse_ the _s_ is followed by the stressed vowel, which is patently false (if one
            Message 5 of 19 , Nov 6, 2006
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              --- In lambengolmor@yahoogroups.com, "Pavel Iosad" <edricson@...>
              wrote:

              > > Hm. I thought the stress in _Mondósaresse_ would lie on the _e_
              > > preceding the double consonant _ss_ (according to the
              > > pronunciation rules as for example given in the Appendices of
              > >_LotR_, although the example given there involves double _n_)?
              >
              >This is the realm of guesswork: the rule, as given, does imply that
              >we could have _s_/_r_ alternations in the paradigm relative to stress
              >(witness similar developments in Germanic due to Werner's law with
              >rhotacised and non-rhotacised forms coinhabiting the same paradigm,
              >as in OIcel _kjósa_, participle _kørinn_ 'to choose'). Indeed the
              >very word _ósanwe_ could be expected to exhibit this alternation, of
              > course. However, since no examples are provided by Tolkien, it is
              > rather pointless to speculate whether the paradigm would be levelled
              > to follow the nominative or remain true to the historical phonology;
              > what we can do is only note that something like that could be
              > possible.

              My original objection was mainly to Roman's statement that in
              _Mondósaresse_ the _s_ is followed by the stressed vowel, which is
              patently false (if one agrees that it should be followed
              _immediately_ by the stressed vowel, just as in Verner's Law it is
              the stress on the _immediately_ _preceding_ vowel that prevented
              voiceless fricatives from becoming voiced ones [and, by extension,
              _s_ from becoming _r_ via _z_]). Thus the accent of the word should
              probably not be seen here as a reason why rhotacism did not occur.

              This is why I do not fully agree with your argument: yes, one might
              assume of _ósanwe_ that, for example, the locative could be
              _óranwesse_ ("true to historical phonology", and similar to your Old
              Icelandic example), while it might just as well be _ósanwesse_
              (analogical leveling).

              I just don't see how this is relevant for _Mondósaresse_ and its
              assumed nominative, since the stress is never in the pertinent
              syllable anyway. All one can say is that if the word's second element
              is indeed derived from SAR-, rhotacism "should" probably have
              occurred (in both the nominative and the locative), but for some
              reason it didn't. Of course it is also quite possible, as Roman says,
              that SAR- is not involved at all.

              David
            • "Beregond. Anders Stenström"
              ... There is an acute below the ascender of the esse. Suilad, Beregond
              Message 6 of 19 , Nov 6, 2006
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                j. 'mach' wust wrote:

                > May I ask for the last sign of the second tengwar transcription of
                > 'Mondósaresse'? On the scan available at Christie's, I can make out
                > that there is the tengwa 'esse', but I cannot see whether there is an
                > acute above, and--if there is an acute--whether the acute is below the
                > upper stroke of esse or above.

                There is an 'acute' below the ascender of the esse.

                Suilad,

                Beregond
              • Harm J. Schelhaas
                On reflection, I think that I should relay the following thought to the list. As I had shown Beregond s [Anders Stenström s] initial post and Christie s lot
                Message 7 of 19 , Nov 7, 2006
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                  On reflection, I think that I should relay the following thought to the list.

                  As I had shown Beregond's [Anders Stenström's] initial post and Christie's
                  lot description to a Smial meeting of the Dutch Tolkien Society Unquendor,
                  I've been relaying the discussion on "Tolkien in Oxford" here on Lambengolmor
                  to an interested member of Unquendor. She is a professional linguist, and
                  used to belong to Unquendor's working group on Elvish Linquistics, when that
                  existed long before the time of VT, but dropped out of that field for a long time.

                  (I myself have no solid background in linguistics, which is why I follow this
                  group with keen interest, but usually do not take part myself.)

                  On reading the rhotacism discussion, she at first thought people here were
                  discussing whether the r in "_mondósaResse_" could have developed from an s.
                  When I pointed out that the discussion was rather why the s ("_mondóSaresse_")
                  hadn't turned into an r, her reply was that rhotacism of the first consonant in
                  the second element of a compound is so unheard of, that she as a linguist had
                  not realized that one would think of it at all, and that Tolkien apparently would
                  have thought the same. Hence the retention of the s.

                  -- Harm J. Schelhaas

                  [Thanks for reporting this. I have no trouble believe it to be so, though I would
                  caution that even if so, it surely depends on the age of the compound and to
                  what degree it is perceived to be a compound by the speakers of the language.
                  Not that either of those are necessarily at issue in this particular example, but
                  something to bear in mind lest it be regarded as a rule in all cases. CFH]

                  [And while I'm at it, another gentle reminder to all members to please sign your
                  posts with your real names, and to refer to other contributors by real name. I don't
                  mind the use of _epessi_ and other nicknames in email adresses, but I think it
                  behooves us to use real names in posts and citations. Thanks. CFH]
                • Roman Rausch
                  ... An example for an ancient compound with rhotacism carried out seems to exist, namely: Q _Tindómerel_ * daughter/child of twilight (V:385) with the
                  Message 8 of 19 , Nov 8, 2006
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                    --- In lambengolmor@yahoogroups.com, "Harm J. Schelhaas"
                    <harm.j.schelhaas@...> wrote:

                    >When I pointed out that the discussion was rather why the s
                    >("_mondóSaresse_") hadn't turned into an r, her reply was that
                    >rhotacism of the first consonant in the second element of a
                    >compound is so unheard of, that she as a linguist had not realized
                    >that one would think of it at all, and that Tolkien apparently
                    >would have thought the same. Hence the retention of the s.

                    >[Thanks for reporting this. I have no trouble believe it to be so,
                    >though I would caution that even if so, it surely depends on the age
                    >of the compound and to what degree it is perceived to be a compound
                    >by the speakers of the language. [...] CFH]

                    An example for an ancient compound with rhotacism carried out seems to
                    exist, namely: Q _Tindómerel_ *'daughter/child of twilight' (V:385)
                    with the primitive form given as _tindômiselde_, root SEL-D.

                    But in the context of _Mondósaresse_ this discussion is now pointless
                    anyway - the note from "Quendi & Eldar" Andreas Johansson pointed out
                    in message #950 should have the most relevance here, I think.

                    Roman R.
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