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Re: Blackened Teeth & Ancient Names

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  • Stephen Higa
    ... have ... discoveries ... of ... Thank you Kass, that gives me hope. :) Because Lady Solveig is right, it is a losing battle, and it sure feels like it.
    Message 1 of 15 , Jul 3 10:12 PM
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      > I have to disagree with Effingham here, Stephen. Although certainly
      > experts who have studied the subject for entire careers certainly
      have
      > knowledge that you nor I ever will, there have been amazing
      discoveries
      > made by amateurs in many disciplines. Sometimes it is the "new set
      of
      > eyes" that sees the thing that the experts have been missing. Such
      > enlightenments have happened in the disciplines of clothing history,
      > astronomy, archeology...

      Thank you Kass, that gives me hope. :) Because Lady Solveig is right,
      it is a losing battle, and it sure feels like it. What you said gives
      me drive to try, at least.

      > I wouldn't "give up" if I were you. I would investigate it to
      whatever
      > level you desire. But do always make people aware which of your
      hypotheses
      > are based on concrete evidence and which are "educated guesses".

      Oh, certainly. Doing early Spanish clothing, music, and Judaism, I
      have to tell people that some of this stuff I don't know (heck, a lot
      of it nobody knows), and I'm just going on "educated guesses."
    • Barbara Nostrand
      Noble Cousin! Greetings from Solveig! ... Generally speaking all of the columns follow suit. The H-column is a bit odd as there are two versions of voicing it.
      Message 2 of 15 , Jul 4 5:19 AM
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        Noble Cousin!

        Greetings from Solveig!

        >Hmm...I realize that part, but did the other ha/hi/he/ho sounds just
        >follow the fu's suit?

        Generally speaking all of the columns follow suit. The H-column is
        a bit odd as there are two versions of voicing it. Also, the
        voiced versions tend to involve a kind of bilabial stop. So it
        is not strictly simply a matter of voicing them. Regardless K-
        and G- are still more strongly related as G- is pretty much a
        voiced K- and involves a kind of glottal stop whereas the H-
        variants involve bilabial stops. Producing a glottal stop
        generally involves tong motion not involved in producing a
        bilabial stop.

        >I don't want to dig myself any deeper in this than I am already, but
        >as for the g and h thing, sometimes distinct production mechanisms can
        >make little difference in a consonant shift, like the one from j/g
        >(sounded like modern French "j" in medieval Spanish) to a harsh h in
        >modern Spanish. I was just trying to find out why they say modern
        >japanese h's used to be p's when it doesn't seem like there should be
        >a relationship between the two. Do you actually know why?

        Ahh. What they are saying is that there was greater lip closure
        than at present. Essentially, it is impossible to voice the H
        column without turning it into a bilabial.

        > > The best thing is not to try to play catchup in any field as that is
        >> generally a loosing strategy.
        >
        >yes, that has become apparent... :(

        Please don't feel discouraged. It's just that you have to run
        twice as fast if you go chasing after a group of people making
        forward progress. That doesn't mean that you can not learn more
        about Japanese linguistics than the people here. It just means that
        you should go out and read some linguistics books first. However,
        if you want to be a leader in some area, it is best to find
        some field where you can break new ground.

        Why not go get a copy of Roy Andrew Miller's book on Japanese
        linguistics. It's pretty good. There are others that I can
        recommend as well. There is also a spiffy book called "The
        Languages of Japan" which has sections on the Ainu language
        and the Okinawan language as well. I you are fortunate enough
        to be an undergraduate, then please take a course or two in
        linguistics. I don't know of anyone anyone in the Society that
        has done serious work with the Ainu language. I have a short
        popular introduction to the language written in Japanese, but
        that doesn't count. We can be quite confident that the Ainu
        were in at least some parts of Japan before the Japanese
        showed up.

        Finally, please take to heart a famous aphorism. I think it was
        Newton. I do not have a quotations book here. Regardless it goes
        as follows:

        I see farther because I stand on the shoulders of Giants.

        What this means is that you should try to go out and learn what
        has already been discovered and conjectured about your field of
        study before becoming overly attached to your own theories.

        Your Humble Servant
        Solveig Throndardottir
        Amateur Scholar

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      • logan@modzer0.cs.uaf.edu
        ... I would suggest you go ahead and get the suggested reading material or take a course on linquistics--Japanese in particular. However, since you have
        Message 3 of 15 , Jul 4 10:55 PM
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          On Wed, 4 Jul 2001, Stephen Higa wrote:

          > Well, I'm just wondering...I mean, I'm somewhat familiar with the
          > linguistic periods in Europe that one has to know to do the medieval
          > and renaissance music I'm interested in (i.e. Occitan, Iberian
          > languages, English, French, Arabic, Hebrew), but I don't know about
          > Japanese linguistics aside from what one gets when one speaks a
          > little of it conversationally (i.e., not much). I thought perhaps
          > this would be a good place to ask, because linguistics texts can be
          > overwhelming when jumping in cold turkey.
          >
          > I don't want to dig myself any deeper in this than I am already, but
          > as for the g and h thing, sometimes distinct production mechanisms can
          > make little difference in a consonant shift, like the one from j/g
          > (sounded like modern French "j" in medieval Spanish) to a harsh h in
          > modern Spanish. I was just trying to find out why they say modern
          > japanese h's used to be p's when it doesn't seem like there should be
          > a relationship between the two. Do you actually know why?
          >

          I would suggest you go ahead and get the suggested reading material or
          take a course on linquistics--Japanese in particular. However, since you
          have asked, I will try to remember everything that I had been taught in my
          linguistics class and see what I can do for you here.

          First of all, the issue of p -> h; in case you aren't interested in the
          rest just yet ;) I'm going to also try and define the various terms as I
          am not sure if you or others are familiar with them. As a disclaimer,
          when I say 'English' I am talking about English as it is taught in
          most American schools.

          As was mentioned, pu->fu is the same path that all of the 'h' series took.
          That is, p->f->h. The first is an unvoiced bilabial plosive. The second
          is an unvoiced bilablial fricative (note that it is actually different
          from the English 'f' which is labio-dental). The H is an unvoiced glottal
          fricative.

          Voiced refers to whether or not the larynx is vibrating when the sound is
          produced. Put your hand on your throat and you can feel it-- k is
          unvoiced, g is voiced; s is unvoiced, z is voiced; t is unvoiced, d is
          voiced. See a pattern? More on that later.

          The terms 'bilabial', 'labio-dental', and 'glottal' refer to where the
          sound is produced. Bilabial means that it is produced with both lips.
          'p', 'b', and 'm' are all Bilabial in English.

          Labio-dental means that it is produced with one lip and one set of teeth
          (lower lip, teeth of the upper jaw). The English 'f' and 'v' are
          examples.

          Glottal refers to the back of the throat. I believe that it is about as
          far back as we really go in English.

          The next part has to do with how the sound is created. A plosive (think
          'explode' or 'implode') is where we close off a part of our mouth and then
          build up air, releasing it to form the sound (p, t, d, g, k, for example).

          A fricative is when the sound is caused by friction between the parts of
          the mouth. 'f','v','s', and 'z' are some examples of fricatives.


          Now, another aspect of all of this is the voicing, which I touched on
          briefly before. Now look at all the Japanese characters that take two
          'ten-ten' marks. That mark turns ka to ga, sa to za, etc. In each case,
          it adds the quality of making those sounds 'voiced'. For the 'h' series
          we therefore get 'b' because it is the voiced version of 'p' (Now, why
          they still kept the 'p' sound for some things I'm not sure. I am curious
          as to why that survived).

          Also notice that ma, na, ra, ya, wa cannot have a voiced quality added to
          them.

          Okay, there's a lot more, but I'm starting to ramble. If you want, I can
          keep going in this vein; although I do ask that people correct me if I am
          wrong.


          -Ii
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