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Re: PolyF and question

From:Jeffrey Jones <jsjonesmiami@...>
Date:Sunday, May 6, 2007, 6:48
On Sat, 5 May 2007 23:01:37 -0700, David J. Peterson
<dedalvs@...> wrote:

>Jeff wrote: ><< >Examples illustrating aspects: >1. halen "I ran." >2. hâlen "I was running." >3. haulen "I have run." >4. hailen "I'm about to run." > >My question is whether or not these stems look or sound too similar. > >> > >I don't know how "â" is supposed to be pronounced, but I'm >guessing [&] (and standard for the rest). I'll assume that for the >rest.
The circumflex indicates a long vowel. I'm considering qualitative differences as well, such as [a] vs. [A], but haven't settled on anything.
>There certainly can be a stage in a language where this is a >distinction. If the vowels are distinct, and the diphthongs are >distinct, then they are distinct, and can be used as such. So if >a language has a given number of stages, then at at least one >point in its existence, there can be a stage where these are >distinct. > >Bearing that in mind, I suppose the real question is can these >remain distinct forever.
Yes, that's what I was trying to get at -- thanks.
> I suppose it depends. If I were a speaker >of this language, and I spoke it with a bunch of other me-like >speakers, then I think the following would happen: > >1. halen >2. hâlen <-> haulen >3. hailen > >That is, the imperfective and retrospective would come to be >indistinguishable in pronunciation. That's just my opinion. If >this were your orthography, though, I can imagine that this >would be something that kids would have to learn by rote, so >that they'd learn: > >"halen", perfective: ['ha.len] >"hâlen", imperfective: ['h&.len] >"haulen", retrospective: ['h&.len] >"hailen", prospective: ['hai.len] > >And I'm sure kids would make mistakes: > >Complete the Dialog Below: >A: Have you ever run a marathon? >B: Yes, hâlen a marathon. > >Teacher: Not "hâlen", "haulen". > >I could also see a German/Frenchy-type merger like that below: > >1. halen >2. hâlen <-> hailen >3. haulen > >Which are pronounced: > >1. halen ['ha.len] >2. hâlen/hailen ['he.len] >3. haulen ['ho.len]
All these sound change suggestions are good. I'm also going to look at loss of the length distinction.
>So you could go a number of ways with it. Provided that first >syllable is the most prominent, though, I don't see why at some >stage of the language you shouldn't have them distinct.
Yes, the first syllable is the most prominent.
> >-David >**********************************************************
>"A male love inevivi i'ala'i oku i ue pokulu'ume o heki a." >"No eternal reward will forgive us now for wasting the dawn." > >-Jim Morrison > >