[T] -> [f] (was: Chinese Dialect Question)
|From:||Ray Brown <ray.brown@...>|
|Date:||Saturday, October 4, 2003, 6:21|
On Friday, October 3, 2003, at 06:01 , Paul Bennett wrote:
> On 3 Oct 2003 at 12:18, Mark J. Reed wrote:
>> On Fri, Oct 03, 2003 at 04:37:14PM +0100, Joe wrote:
>>> Well, in a lot of S. English dialects, /T/ and /f/ have merged into [f]
>> Really? So "path" is [paf] in adult speech? That sounds so much like
>> a child's error to me that I have trouble imagining it as a dialectical
> I can support this, and also that [D] has merged with [v].
So I can I - I live in north Surrey next the border with London in a place
named "Leatherhead" colloquially "lEvrEd/ (Yep, the second syllable seems
retain the /E/. I work in SW London and [pAf] is the norm in colloquial
of both adults & youngsters.
(But I don't quite see how this relates to any _Chinese Dialect Question_,
so I've changed
the subject line!)
> Given the local vowel distribution, it's more likely to be [pAf] and
> [pAvz] than [paf]
> and [pavz].
> It's part of my lowest-register idiolect, and likewise for most of my
> cohorts aged from
> childhood up to full adulthood, in moderately urban areas around the
> north-west of London.
> However, word-initially, [T] and [D] seem to retain their values in all
> my idiolects.
> Pronouncing "think" as [fInk] has the hallmark of a typically
> eastwards accent than it does of the accents I grew up with.
Yep - it was once the hall-mark of London speech but it seems to have
widespread in the south of Britain in past half century. I lived for 22
years in Newport
in south Wales and the pronunciation of /T/ as [f] and /D/ as [v] is
common enough there
in urban areas.
Quite why Mark can't imagine the falling together of /f/ and /T/ to just
[f] (and /v/ and /D/ to /v/), I don't know. It's not exactly an
unattested phenomenon. It has happened elsewhere in earlier times, e.g.
Theodore has become 'Fyodor' in Russian and IIRC Greek /Tomas/ (Thomas) is
'Foma'. Until the Bolsheviks reformed Russian spelling, the alphabet
retained the Greek letter theta with the pronunciation /f/.
The change also occurred in pre-Latin where PIE /d_h/ --> /t_h/ (as in
ancient Greek) --> /T/ --> /f/
fe:ci: = Gr. 'ethe:ka', Skt. 'adha:t'
fe:mina, fe:cundus = Gr. 'tithe:ne:', 'the:lus', Skt. 'dha:tri:
(nurse) <-- *dhe: "suckle"
fu:mus = Gr, 'thu:mos' = Skt. 'dhu:mas'