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Re: Sound Change With Labialized Consonant Codas

From:Henrik Theiling <theiling@...>
Date:Tuesday, February 26, 2008, 18:15

David J. Peterson wrote:
> I thought of something today, and wanted to see if it actually > existed in natural languages. > > Has there ever been a case where labialized consonant codas > produced front rounded vowels? Something like the following: > > i > y / _C_w > > So... > > *kik_we > kyk_we > *mek_wt_wa > m2k_wt_wa > > It feels like a natural change to me, but I've never run across an > instance of it.
Very natural indeed and I think Old Norse had this: Old Norse u-umlaut did this, e.g. Old Norse _lyng_ 'heather, ling' is from Proto-Germanic *lengwa-. (Or something similar. I don't know why -y- and not -ø-, but my sources give -e- for the Germanic stem vowel.) Other examples from Köbler's Old Norse lexicon (ON=Old Norse, PN=Proto-Norse, PG=ProtofGermanic): ON PG/PN søkkva < PG *sinkwan/*senkwan 'to sink' syngva < PG *singwan/*sengwan 'to sing' fyrvar < PN *firwo:R < PG *ferhwio:z 'men' nykr < PN *nikwR < PG *nekwiz 'water daemon' In _sökkva_, the -ö- may be due to regular lowering before -kk-, so the pattern PG -e- > PN -i- > ON -y- might be the same for all those examples. Dunno what causes PG -e- > PN -i- here. An -e- before -w will usually break into -ja- and then be u-umlauted to -jQ-, today -jö-, e.g.: mjQl < *melwa- 'flour (the powder)' This _Q_ is usually written o with ogonek, probably /Q/ or /O/. Unfortunately, that ON -y- is /i/ in Modern Icelandic again, but the spelling still represents the umlauted vowel. Further, _ø_ and _Q_ have merged into _ö_ /2/, making things a bit blurry in MIS. **Henrik