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Old Icelandic orthography and phonology

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  • brahmabull@hushmail.com
    ... I meant another root consonant declension noun that has i-umlaut for the dative singular, nom. and acc. plural. In Old English there are many such:
    Message 1 of 1 , Nov 30, 2003
      Greetings, Haukur:

      >Like f�tr-foeti in what way exactly?

      I meant another "root consonant declension" noun that has i-umlaut for
      the dative singular, nom. and acc. plural. In Old English there are many
      such: f�t::f�t, t��::t��, mann::menn for masculines; b�c::b�c (book)
      and several more feminines; neuter only a trace in scr�d::scr�d (clothing).
      [I'm using the acute mark in OE because the macron is really hard on
      computers.]

      <<I understand that for a-stem dat. sg. /degi/ the change is due to the
      palatal consonant +/i/ (Gordon 38). What other nouns could be given as
      examples of this change?>>

      <None. At least none that I know of. And yes, it's a bit forced to make

      up a rule for something that can only be seen in one word :)

      On the other hand there are some examples in the verbs.
      Compare these:

      fara - f�r - f�rum - farinn (go)
      taka - t�k - t�kum - tekinn (take)

      The 'k' seems to be the reason we have an 'e' in the participle of the

      second verb but not the first.>

      Thanks! Gordon does point these out (38) but I had missed it. As for
      dat. sg. degi, Gordon says "the i is a late development of earlier e
      or �," so I see this isn't i-umlaut at all in the usual sense. But it's
      funny how languages keep repeating things (although not exactly the same
      way) in the history of their development. I mean things like the consonant-
      shift for Germanic, with re-play in the High German shift, or the palatalizations
      in Slavic languages.


      <<With you help, I now see that many of the OIc forms are
      not misprints, but a reflection of a different approach. Still, I think

      it would be better to give "classical" OIc forms in a book like this.

      The forms I was questioning seem better suited to a detailed discussion

      of OIc for advanced students.>>

      <<Perhaps. Then again the endings /e/ and /o/ may look more familiar
      to
      students of other Germanic languages.>>

      The book goes into Indo-European too. There is a nice "beginner's" presentation
      of ablaut in the IE perspective, of laryngeals, etc. The book is mostly
      about Old English, but for Germanic cites Gothic and Old Icelandic. In
      this context I don't think /e/ and /o/ are helpful. The Old English endings
      have /u/, with /o/ as a variant at times. Of course Old English /e/ is
      everywhere, but you learn quickly that this can be an "i-umlaut" environment,
      as in dat. sg., nom. acc. pl. hnyte from hnutu, 'nut'. I even think
      (which I didn't at first) that Lass should use thorn and edh in his Icelandic
      forms according to the standard rule. These are simple matters compared
      to the meaning of writing <ai> and <au> in Gothic, with up to three phonological
      interpretations for each. Yet of course Lass sites his Gothic in the
      standard orthography.

      Thanks again. This group is really encouraging me to work more on Norse!

      Gazariah
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