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Re: Another Urianian phonology problem.

From:Lars Finsen <lars.finsen@...>
Date:Sunday, June 1, 2008, 15:52
Den 31. mai. 2008 kl. 00.14 skreiv John Vertical:
> > > I think your step-by-step chronology could most likely go like this: > kw) gw) gwh)) > cw) J\w) J\wh)) (labiovelars spontaneously palatalize) > gh) J\hw)) > G j\w) > x Cw) (voiced aspirates spirantize, then > devoice) > x > h (lenition of the least marked dorsal fricativ) > Cw) > x / w (the labiopalatal fricativ changes to something less > marked) > cw) J\w) > cCw)) J\j\w)) > Cw) j\w) (labiopalatal stops spirantize) > Cw) j\w) > C j (labiality of palatals finally lost)
Thanks for your comments, John V. Much appreciated. You are right that a stop turning into a fricative will pretty soon lose any aspiration. So at least /gh/ > /xh/ isn't the right way to go. I think /gh/ goes /G/ then /x/, then /h/ or /0/ depending on dialect. (Or perhaps /x/ is written with an h?) This means my Old Urianian spelling with an h must probably be altered. I think it's a good idea to let the labiovelar stops turn to palatal stops before they turn into palatal fricatives, or in this case labiopalatal stops and fricatives. Your scheme seems well worked out and I can follow most of it, except that don't know what you are doing with all those right parantheses. But I can't have the former / kW/ merging with the /gWh/ in the fourth stage. What I think happens is not labiopalatalisation, because this would tip the velar stops into the palatal as well, wouldn't it? I need the velars, because they fit well with my material. (I couldn't let my Urianians write palatals with k and g, could I?) I think I do need an early loss of labiality after all, and palatalisation to happen in the process. The labiality will only leave traces in the following phonemes. Then the voiced palatal stop can retain the aspiration, which pulls its stop back into a velar fricative while the others spirantise into palatal fricatives: kW gW gWh > c J\ J\h > C j\ x. Just like the velar fricative resulting from the IE /gh/, this one is unstable and remains only in the lowlands, while the labiality traces are all that remains of the /gWh/ in the highlands. Is this plausible? The result is, for example, including vowel changes, lowland /gWher/ >> /xar/, highland /gWher/ >> /yr/. I must find another source for my 'vyr, vir, or' forms. This requires the gh > G > x to happen earlier than gWh > J\h > x, or else they will merge as well.
> but it might not quite fit what happens to other consonants, like the > palato- & plain velars, or the labial & dental voiced aspirates…
Urianian is a centum language and doesn't have a trace of palatovelars. I toyed with them in the beginning, but decided to drop them because my material didn't support them. (At one stage I thought of Urianian as a western branch of Baltic.) The other voiced aspirates turn into respective fricatives. The bilabials then develop into labiodentals. These and the plain stops as well as some other phonemes suffer some voicing changes that constitute another Urianian phonology problem, which I might return to later if I may. LEF