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/s/ -> /h/ [was: Re: Betreft: Re: k(w)->p]

From:dirk elzinga <dirk.elzinga@...>
Date:Thursday, January 27, 2000, 21:37
On Thu, 27 Jan 2000, yl-ruil wrote (concerning /s/ -> /h/):

> I think this change occurs generally because s is voiced to z, which then > weakens to h-. This is also really quite common in the indo-european family: > *sawelios --> Greek. helios and Welsh haul (sun, obviously).
There is no evidence for an intermediate voiced stage in the alternation between /s/ and /h/. In fact, such a step would make the change less likely. What /s/ and /h/ have in common is the spreading of the vocal folds during articulation--in fact, that's all an /h/ is; spread vocal folds. This spreading inhibits voicing (actually, makes it impossible). The lenition of /s/ to /z/ puts it on a different path whose endpoint is not likely to be /h/. Dirk -- Dirk Elzinga