Theiling Online    Sitemap    Conlang Mailing List HQ   

Re: Middle English question

From:BP Jonsson <bpj@...>
Date:Friday, July 30, 1999, 22:08
At 10:36 -0500 29.7.1999, Patrick Dunn wrote:
>On Thu, 29 Jul 1999, Nik Taylor wrote: > >> Could anyone tell me how my sig was pronounced? The final -e's are >> pronounced as /@/, yes? >> -- >> "[H]e axed after eggys: And the goode wyf answerde, that she coude not >> speke no Frenshe ... And then at last a nother sayd that he woulde haue >> hadde eyren: then the goode wyf sayd that she vnderstood hym wel." -- >> William Caxton > >OE is more my field, but the general rules are: > >final e's pronounced as /@/ >a vowel before a final e is long, unless followed by double consonants (so >"hadde" is a short a, but the e in speke is long >doubled vowels are long >y pronounced like /i/. >Most vowels have their eupropean equivelents. > >And much of that might be wrong, but it'll get you close.
According to my "Kortfattad Engelsk Spraakhistoria" -- which title I'll leave as a Swedish translation exercice! -- things go more or less like said above, with due caveats for multiple correspondences, as already mentioned by others, but further it says: "ee" was /e:/. "ea" and "eCe" were /E:/. "oo" was /o:/. "oa" and "oCe" were /O:/. "a" was /&/ and "aCe" /&:/, and both sometimes /a:/. "u" was /u/ or /y/. "o" was sometimes /u/ "loue" /luv@/, but mostly /O/. The spelling underdifferentiated WRT /u/ vs. /y/, but /y/ was rare. "ui" and "uCe" were /y:/. "au/aw" was /au/ or (especially before nasals and "s") /a:/. The /a:/ words have variant spellings: "da(u)nce" /da:ns/. "ou/ow" was /u:/, also /ou/ and /Ou/. Before "gh" seldom /u:/. It is not clear if /ou/ and /Ou/ were distinct. "eu" was /eu/ or /Eu/. "ei/ey" was /Ei/. "ai/ay" was /ai/. "oi/oy" was usually /ui/, "in English words" /ai/, never /Oi/! "th" was /D/ in "VthV" and "rthV", else /T/. "s" was /z/ in "VsV", and after voiced consonants, but not finally after vowels! "gh" was actually /x/, sometimes written "h" "tohte" or "3" "to3te". So Boudewijn's "Dutch dialect principle" mostly holds very good! :-) Acc. to my "Nederlaendsk Grammatik" _Boudewijn_ should be [bOud@VEin] with [V]=labiodental glide (script-v/upsilon). Is it antiquated, or what? To distinguish [V] and a fricative [v] seems nightmarish to me, since Swedish "v" is mostly [V]. My native dialect has a bilabial/labiovelar glide distinct from the labiodental one in some words (from historical /hv/ and /v/ before sonorants, for the curious), so that feels easy to me(!), but a labiodental fricative/glide distinction doesnt... hAn 'spW:.d@ 'C&:ra frW:n @m hW: 'hadd@ 'n8:rA pu'tA:tisar, o: hW: sA: Att@ hW: ent@ 'k8nn@ bE'gri:ba W:d'ri:geska dA: va: de:r en a:n s8m sA: Att@ di 'vell@ ha: 'n8:@rA 'pu:tEd@r, o: hW: sA: Att@ hW: bE'gre:b prEksis 'waff@n8:t,n sA: I suppose most Danes and Norwegians would find this easier than most Swedes, yet it is a "Swedish" dialect! ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ B.Philip Jonsson <bpj@...> <melroch@...> Solitudinem faciunt pacem appellant! (Tacitus)