By San Duanmu
This ebook seems on the variety of attainable syllables in human languages. The syllable is a significant suggestion in phonology yet uncomplicated questions about it stay poorly understood and phonologists are divided on even the main common matters. for instance, the be aware city has been syllabified as ci-ty (the 'maximal onset' analysis), cit-y (the 'no-open-lax-V' analysis), and cit-ty (the 'geminate C' analysis).
San Duanmu explores and clarifies those and plenty of different similar concerns via an in-depth research of whole lexicons of numerous languages. a few languages, corresponding to normal and Shanghai chinese language, have rather easy syllables, but a minimum distinction in syllable constitution has bring about a dramatic distinction in tonal habit. different languages, comparable to English, German, and Jiarong, have lengthy consonant clusters and feature been inspiration to require very huge syllables: San Duanmu exhibits that the particular syllable constitution in those languages is way easier. He bases his analyses on quantitative facts, paying equivalent awareness to generalizations which are more likely to be common. He exhibits winning research of the syllable needs to bear in mind numerous theories, together with characteristic idea, the Weight-Stress precept, the dimensions of morpheme stock, and the metrical illustration of the syllable.
San Duanmu's transparent exposition will entice phonologists and complex scholars and should supply a brand new benchmark in syllabic and prosodic research. He additionally deals a solution to the interesting query: how diverse can human languages be?
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Additional info for Syllable Structure: The Limits of Variation (Oxford Linguistics)
The distribution of syllabic [z] and [ü] is quite constrained, as proven in (29). There are 3 syllables during which the syllabic [z] happens and 4 syllables within which [ü] does. (29) Occurrences of syllabic [z] and [ü] [z] tsz tzh z sz [ü] úùü úùh ü ùü üü The onset of those syllables is both a fricative or an affricate, i. e. it includes the function [+fricative] (see bankruptcy 2). furthermore, the rhyme is similar or just like the fricative portion of the onset other than that the rhyme is voiced. the truth that [z] and [ü] don't take place with different onsets means that they don't seem to be self sustaining sounds. an easy research, for this reason, is that syllabic [z] and [ü] are unfold from the onset to the rhyme (Pulleyblank 1984, Lin 1989, Wiese 1997, Duanmu 2000). In (30) I exhibit the research of [tszz] ‘self’, the place the rhyme [zz] 106 CH . five typical chinese language is lengthy in an entire syllable and O, N, and C are onset, nucleus, and coda respectively. (30) [ts] [+stop][+fric] [tszz] [+stop][+fric] Cor Cor Cor O NC O NC VC VC VC [−voi] [−voi] [+voi] The notice begins with the affricate [ts], which has articulators, Vocal-cords (VC), which dominates the positive factors [−voice], and Coronal (Cor), which dominates [+stop] and [+fricative]. Assuming that the nucleus doesn't let [+stop] or [−voice], [ts] needs to be associated with the onset. subsequent, the empty slots within the rhyme set off the spreading of [+fricative] (but now not [+stop]). The rhyme additionally will get default [+voice]. the result's [ts] within the onset and [zz] within the rhyme. The above research predicts that each fricative or affricate must have a syllabic fricative as its counterpart. The predictions for traditional chinese language are proven in (31). (31) Fricatives/affricates [ts, tsh , s] [úù, úùh , ù, ü] [f] [x] Syllabic opposite numbers ([−stop, +voice]) [z] [ü] [v] ([ı]) [G] () The predictions for the ﬁrst units of sounds are came upon. The prediction for [f] overlaps with [fu], that is frequently discovered as [fı], the place the vowel (or syllabic [v]) is labiodental. The prediction for [x] overlaps with [x7], the place  is usually discovered as [W] or [G]. i've got proven how the current research debts for the distribution of the syllabic consonants [z] and [ü]. Now in the event that they are apical vowels [ę] and [ğ], as normally assumed, we should always count on them to happen as freely as different vowels, which isn't the case. a standard tale is that [ę] and [ğ] are allophones of the vowel [i] (Dong 1958: 81). despite the fact that, think of the phrases [sz] ‘silk’ and [si] (realized as [sj i] or [Ci]) ‘west’. within the current research, they shape a minimum pair of distinction. if that is so, [z] 5. five. SYLLABIC CONSONANTS 107 and [i] aren't in complementary distribution and never allophones of an identical phoneme. within the conventional research, the answer isn't really so seen. Lee and Zee (2003) use the emblem [ô] for either [z] and [ü], however it isn't transparent no matter if their transcription "is intended to be phonemic or allophonic. If [ô] is intended to be a phoneme, then there's no desire for " it, simply because its prevalence is completely predictable.