YAEPT: Characterising English /l/s (was: Re: Alborgian/ Borgi)
|From:||Tristan McLeay <conlang@...>|
|Date:||Thursday, May 29, 2008, 4:33|
Eric Christopherson wrote:
> On May 28, 2008, at 5:43 PM, Tristan McLeay wrote:
>> On 29/05/08 05:57:01, Ingmar Roerdinkholder wrote:
>>> Thanks Weeping Elf! eLf with a Lateral as weLL I guess?
>>> but, how are the different kinds of L called. The LL in Arabic aLLah
>>> or English
>>> aLL, and the L in English leap or Arabic Layl?
>> The "l" in RP "all" is called a dark or velarised l or in full a
>> velarised alveolar lateral approximate.
> Approximant. </nitpicky>
Gha! I can never remember that...
> I have never really been able to perceive the difference in my own
> speech or in that of most other Americans. However, there are some
> people who have a very "dark"-sounding /l/, which actually sounds
> like me more like a velar approximant; whether it's lateral or
> central I'm not sure. Tom Brokaw is the best example I can think of,
> and I think fellow newsman Robert Bezell too maybe.
> Does anyone know exactly how to characterize their /l/?
Initially and after consonants, my /l/ is a velarised lateral
approximant. After vowels (including before vowels) it's usually a
velarised lateral approximant, but is quite frequently merely a central
velar approximant. I have trouble distinguishing the two -- nevertheless
I'm well aware of when a Kiwi or Cockney is vocalising their l's;
presumably they do it differently.
/l/ is not permitted in the same syllable before /j/ or after [Ae]
(pie), [&i] (hay), [Ii] (he), [Vu\] (hoe) or [u\:] (coo) i.e. the vowels
moving towards a high-front place and [u\:]. In the case of the first
two, an epenthetic schwa is added. In the case of [Ii] and [u\:], these
become [I:] (i.e. the same vowel as "fear") and [u:]. Quite why [I:] is
permitted but [u\:] isn't I'm sure. [Vu\] is retracted to [Ou]. Hence:
pile [pAej@5], hail [h&ij@5], heel [hI:5], whole [hOu5], cool [ku:5].
Epenthesis does not apply if a vowel follows, but the quality changes
i.e. [I: u: Ou] do.
This of course means that the /l/ in the (foreign) standard
pronunciation of "Australia" can't be either the coda of the syllable
starting with [stSr&i] nor part of the onset of the next syllable [j@].
Hence, either the /l/ is deleted or the /j/ becomes syllabic and you get
[@stSr&ij@] or [@stSr&i5i.@].