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Re: The [??] attribute

From:Herman Miller <hmiller@...>
Date:Saturday, September 7, 2002, 4:13
On Thu, 5 Sep 2002 19:57:42 -0700, Arthaey Angosii <arthaey@...>

>And when they talk about "syllabic consonants," what does this mean in >practice? A definition I found: "A syllabic consonant is a phonetic element >that normally patterns as a consonant, but may fill a vowel slot in a >syllable." One of the examples given is the word "bottom" -- but why don't they >describe this as /bAtVm/ with a very short V? (I'm from California, in case >we're known for having a strange pronunciation of this word. :)
I don't think I've ever heard "bottom" with a syllabic consonant. I think a better example, at least in American English, would be "kitten". I don't normally pronounce any vowel in the second syllable of "kitten" between the /t/ (which in this word I usually pronounce as a glottal stop) and the /n/, but instead the /n/ sound acts as the vowel in the syllable. But I'm from Michigan, and I don't know for certain if "kitten" is pronounced with a syllabic /n/ in California. Swahili has a syllabic /m/ in words like _mti_ "tree" or _mtu_ "person". Czech has syllabic /l/ in words like _vlk_ "wolf" and syllabic /r/ in words like _prst_ "finger". Even voiceless sounds like /s/ can be syllabic in some languages (or marginally in English, in the word "psst"). It all depends on the particular language's definition of a syllable. -- languages of Azir------> ---<>--- hmiller (Herman Miller) "If all Printers were determin'd not to print any email password: thing till they were sure it would offend no body, \ "Subject: teamouse" / there would be very little printed." -Ben Franklin