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Re: Uvulars, was: A sample of my newborn conlang

From:Stephen Mulraney <ataltanie@...>
Date:Wednesday, January 30, 2002, 12:30
On Mon, 28 Jan 2002 14:58:38 -0500
Vasiliy Chernov <bc_@...> wrote:

> >It does indeed. Is it hard? I generally have lots of trouble with > >front vowels following extremely back consonants (like finding them > >impossible), but for some reason this doesn't seem difficult to me.
> It's indeed possible. French has no trouble combining its [R] with front > vowels (including [i] and [y]) and clustering it with [j].
Glad to hear it, and French [R] is an obvious example which I completely missed.
> It seems I've heard of some language (Chechen?) having some palatalized > uvular stops as phonemes. > > In fact, uvulars are easier to combine with front vowels, palatals &like > than velars are, just because the articulations involved are more distant.
Yes - I noticed this when deciding what consonant clusters to keep in my language - I found myself ruling out combinations that I had thought were easy, like /tc/ and keeping e.g. /tq/ which I had naively assumed were 'hard' because they contained a 'difficult' sound. [difficult, as ever, meaning "not in my mother tongue" ;)]
> At first I always produced heavily velarized sounds while trying to > pronounce a uvular stop. Then I recalled my native accent (or rather a > logopeutic problem),
"logopeutic problem" = an exercise designed to to teach unfamiliar phones?
> substituting normal Russian [r] with the uvular trill, > and realized that no velarization was necessary.
Does the Russian soft/hard distinction describe a palatalised/velarised difference, or a palatalised/unpalatalised one? I thought the latter was the case for Irish, but after seeing a few times that it should be the former, my mouth and ears are beginning to belive it ;)
> What seems to be really difficult is to produce a pure (not affricated) > uvular stop (without confusing "uvular" with "deep velar").
For you, you mean, or universally? I notice that my uvular stops tend to be more affricated than say my dental stops, but a stop/fricative distinction is still possible.
> Basilius
Stephen PS. Thank you, Basilius, for your lengthy answer to my "phonemes" question, which was of course naiver that I belived it to be when posting ;). I will respond to it when I have some time to think about the subject (i.e. not today)