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Re: CHAT: minimal pair of English Interdentals

From:Muke Tever <mktvr@...>
Date:Friday, October 25, 2002, 11:31
From: "Jake X" <alwaysawake247@...>
> I recently reread a post of several weeks ago about whether [T] and [D] are > cophonemic in English. I found a minimal pair: teeth [tiT] and to teethe > [tiD] (as in what a baby does when s/he grows the first teeth). Does that > prove anything?
No, actually. I understand that, strictly speaking, a minimal pair can't be used with a phoneme on a morpheme boundary (and "teethe" is just "teeth" with a [+voice] morpheme that makes verbs--the same you find in "house" n. vs. "to house" v.) And that's kinda what makes it difficult, as most normal [D] *are* sitting on morpheme boundaries, if not actually morphemes themselves (like [D] deictic and [D] 2nd person archaic familiar). I still like "arrhythmology" vs. "arithmology" ([D] vs. [T], "study of abnormal heartbeat" and "study of numbers").
> Does anyone here speak a dialect which has both of those > pronbounced the same?
Someone [foreign, whose post I can't find at the moment] mentioned that the difference between their /f/ and /v/ was mostly fortis/lenis rather than voiced/unvoiced. Last night I developed a hypothesis that Australian does the same thing with /T/ and /D/, which my brain came up with as an explanation for why at least two or three Australians on this list had trouble finding the 'voicing' in /D/. Does that sound plausible? Anyway, I reeeeeally think English interdentals belong in the FAQ. *Muke! --


bnathyuw <bnathyuw@...>