English VL, was Ygde
|From:||Shreyas Sampat <ssampat@...>|
|Date:||Thursday, April 17, 2003, 15:04|
> I'm not sure that this tense/lax distinction is phonemic in
> English - to be honest, I don't quite understand what the
> distinction is, which makes me suspect that it isn't an
> important one in my native language. However, there's
> definitely a long/short contrast between reed [ri:d] and rid
> [rid], which I think is a more important contrast in English.
> However, I'm beginning to suspect that there's a tendency for
> length contrasts in English to correlate with other
> contrasts, cf the contrast between [&] and [a:].
In my dialect, tense vowels are universally longer than lax, and short
vowels are slightly lengthened before voiced consonants. So there's a
three-way phoneTic length pattern:
So IMD, the length contrast is in fact nonphonemic; it follows from