Re: [X] vs. [x]
|From:||Danny Wier <dawiertx@...>|
|Date:||Friday, March 26, 2004, 13:38|
From: "John Cowan" <cowan@...>
> Are there any languages in which [x] and [X] actually contrastphonemically?
> The IPA's use of distinct letters (as opposed to diacritics) suggests
> that it is so, but I've never encountered one. Languages with an /x/
> seem to render it as either [x] or [X], one form usually being preferred.
Yupik and Aleut (from Inuit-Aleut), the isolate Nivkh, and Riff and Kabyle
(from the Berber branch of Afro-Asiatic) have all these as phonemes: /x/ /X/
/G/ /R/. All these but Nivkh also have labialized forms of these four.
Inuktitut has /G/ and /R/, and some dialects even have /N/ and /N\/ (the
latter in other dialects is an allophone of /N/ before /q/ and /R/).
Riff and Kabyle developed velar fricatives from weakening of non-geminate
velar stops in Common Berber (/k/ /g/ /k_w/ /g_w/); voiceless fricatives in
Inuit-Aleut languages might result from gemination of voiced fricatives, but
I'm not sure about that.