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CONLANG Digest - 20 Nov 2000 to 21 Nov 2000 (#2000-319)

From:Muke Tever <alrivera@...>
Date:Wednesday, November 22, 2000, 7:06
> From: Roger Mills <romilly@...> > Subject: Re: Rumsen, Rumsien, Costanoan. > > >Pinart > >writes this as <tc>. Jackson also has a character of c with what looks > >like an accent, but I dont know what this sound is, since it's strangely > >not listed in his list of sounds (only c with caron is). > "c" in US usage usually represnets /ts/-- but with an accent??
> to show palatalization? That would possibly accord with Pinart's "tj"
> he know Dutch? tho Alphonse Pinart sounds French)
(Daimyo uses <tc> to transliterate a voiceless retroflex affricate.)
> From: Barry Garcia <Barry_Garcia@...> > Subject: Re: Rumsen, Rumsien, Costanoan. > > I also dont think it's *too* important to the casual reader that i try to > get an accurate "translation" of the sounds between Montreiano and > Rumsien. A working pronunciation should suffice. I suspect only someone > who is pedantic would care :).
Of course, the loans will probably not be overseen by linguists (or bilinguals), and the Montreianos might end up with forms even farther off from your dictionary-compiler's _anyway_.
> From: Oskar Gudlaugsson <hr_oskar@...> > Subject: Hellenish oddities > > I always approach language courses with skepticism. The nature of
> is so often misconceived, no less by the various authors of language > courses. I start by skipping to the pronunciation guide, which says a good > deal about the book's linguistic accuracy; I've seen so many language > courses for English people describe [E:] or [e:] as "the long 'a' as > in 'date' or 'nay", even in serious books written by professors. So that's > always a giveaway.
The software they give students of NT Greek here (of which I am regrettably not one, but I copied it off the network anyway) instructs them to pronounce alpha and omicron identically, like alpha. After I heard the little instructive .wav file pronounce "amicran" for "omicron", I destroyed every .wav file that came with it. Yeurkh.
> So, Greek's weird; some points: > > * what's with the bulky diphthong endings?
Hey! Diphthong endings are not bad. Modern Atlantic's got tons of them--ea, ie, ai, ou, and possibly oi. (Actually I say 'tons' but they don't tend to show up in short words.)
> * what's with initial [ps] and [ts]? Even worse, initial [zd]!
Well, <Z> seems to have meant a lot of things...
> * Those initials are nothing compared to the [p^ht^h], or later [fT], in > words like 'phthong'. That word has in fact become a fashion word among me > and my linguistic friends, for being the most ridiculous syllable we know > of (though with heavy competition from Icelandic [vErmstl^0]).
What, not Georgian <vprtskvni> ? Actually I rather like [fT] (I think it'd be [PT], though--is it bilabial still?). [p_ht_h] sounds like it belongs in some word in my Skeskatai.
> * indeed, the vowel system is rather void of back vowels, supposedly > because Attic Greek was in a transition stage.
Everything's in a "transition stage", really.
> Okay, so today I read through a course for Modern Greek, hoping to get to > know some juicy sound changes and simplifications of morphology. Well, now > it really got spooky! Apparently, 2500 years of sound changes seemed to > yield only this, in my quick glance: > > * orthographic initials <mp> <nt> <gk> pronounced [b d g]...I haven't seen > any initial [mp]'s or such in my book of Ancient Greek, so I'm presuming > the nasals are just a spelling trick; the sample words given were all
> words, so I thought voiced stops could be an import to accommodate the new > words. Or just old voiced stops preserved by some environmental factor; I > don't know why, but in any case Modern Greek does seem to have two rows of > stops after all. Experts here will tell me the answer.
Well, the spelling trick would be probably it. <mp>, <nt>, <gk> non-initially are [mb], [nd], [Ng]. So putting them initially would remind of the [b d g], and reducing the initial nasal to nothing. (While looking up US election 2000 results on Greek webpages, I was amused to find the main candidates rendered as <Mpous> and <Gkor>...) (anyway, a page on Modern Greek is here: ml ..It's got some sound files and sample phrases and words and stuff.)
> * chaotic stress pattern remains; perhaps I just fail to see the pattern
> it.
At least they mark it, unlike in English...
> From: "H. S. Teoh" <hsteoh@...> > Subject: Re: Hellenish oddities > > On Tue, Nov 21, 2000 at 09:36:11PM -0500, Elliott Lash wrote: > [snip] > > frequently are preserved, though not all. (I can't think of any words
> > begin with "psi" for example). > > [psuk<h>i] is one (Attic Greek, I suppose the modern pronunciation is > something like [psiki]?)
psomi (bread), apparently
> From: Marcus Smith <smithma@...> > Subject: Re: Hellenish oddities > > >* what's with initial [ps] and [ts]? Even worse, initial [zd]! > > Apparently you've never looked at a "real" language. Just the other day I > heard a Pima word [shm}:gam]. Note that [sh] is not [S], it is the
> [s] plus [h]. Or there is the cluster in [SontSkwItS]. And what do you
> to say about the Dakota word [xná]? These clusters in Greek are not that
odd. (old Greek has a verb XNAYW according to Perseus...) ******** Anyway, I've been working (slowly) on Hadwan-family vocabulary. I'm getting a basic outline of the color of the languages thus.. Some of the sound changes may not be too likely, but it goes... Here's an example of some words. (I still don't have a name for the B-language, it takes the name 'Baltic' as a placeholder, although it's not in the right area for that) English Hadwan Atlantic [Baltic] "white" rirus -> rairo rirö "elf" (i)nsurus -> souro essur "other" ancirus -> c'airo ässirö "chisel" hamin -> eamme hämin (The questionable <i> in <insurus> stems from an uncertainty in what form should be inherited... Initial unstressed <i> drops, but syllabic <n> becomes <in>. It may be half-pronounced, like a schwa. The change ends up the same either way though.) Urf, I'm going to bed. *Muke! --