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Re: OT: Afrikaans

From:Christophe Grandsire <christophe.grandsire@...>
Date:Monday, June 2, 2003, 14:19
En réponse à Thomas Leigh :

>Very interesting! As all my experience with Dutch comes from >textbooks and the BVN satellite TV channel, I know nothing at >all about Dutch dialects. How fascinating that many of the >differences between Afrikaans and Dutch are present in Dutch >dialects. I wonder if there are particular dialects in Dutch >which exhibit all these features, or whether they are scattered >about? If the former, that might point to the area of the >Netherlands where the colonists who went to Africa originally >came from?
I wouldn't know. Dutch dialects can be very wide apart from each other, and I know mostly about Brabants and Haags, the two dialects I hear most often, and they are quite different already (Haags monophtonguises diphtongues and simplifies final consonant clusters, while Brabants has a strong tendency to round and lower tense vowels, and tends to play strange tricks with 'g' (/G/ in the South) which tends to sporadically appear and disappear).
>That is odd. I have no phonetic training whatsoever, so I could >be hearing it completely wrong, but then people always tell me >that I have a gift for mimicry, and native speakers of languages >I study always praise me for my accent, so I've always thought I >had a good ear. When I hear [ui], the first element stands out >as unrounded, a definite /{/ or maybe very open /E/.
I've heard such a kind of prononciation (but rather [e]) for the first element of the diphtongue in "eu" (in a discussion about the pronunciation of the word "Euro"), but it was corrected by people saying that it should be [2], and it's indeed the most common pronunciation I've heard. I've never heard "ui" pronounced with an unrounded first element (and my French "Teach Yourself Dutch" says that "ui" is closest to French "euille", suggesting a [9j] pronunciation which is indeed close enough to the common [9Y] pronunciation. Haags simplifies it to [9], while Brabants, which usually plays havoc with vowels and diphtongues, tends to keep it as it is - I think it lowers the [9] a bit, but it keeps it rounded, a bit like the OE-ligature in IPA -)
> > That's how Dutch pronounces "eu". > >Ah, you have comfirmed my suspicion! Textbooks of Dutch always >say that [eu] is /2/, a pure vowel, but it always sounded >diphthongised to me.
I've only ever heard as a pure [2] in Haags, but then again it's normal of this dialect. I find it strange too, as it definitely sounds like [2Y] to me.
> I was never sure if I was "hearing things", >or if I heard it right and the textbooks were wrong (or >hypercorrecting).
You heard it right, in this case :) .
> > Common in older orthography of Dutch, and still present in >some names. > >Really? Why the heck did they switch, then? pages full of y's >are so much more attractive than pages full of ij's. :)
I wouldn't know. But I'm happy they switched. "ij" looks much nicer than "y" (and the "y" that are left are usually pronounced [i], so it's good that they switched :))) ).
>Odd. All I can say is that that goes against what every textbook >and dictionary of Afrikaans I've seen says. They all say that >Afrikaans [g] is identical in pronunciation to [ch], both being >pronounced /x/. /g/ does exist, written [gh], but is restricted >to a few loanwords, such as "gholf".
>And drat it, I just realised I've been using [] for written >notation, when it's something else I've forgotten; [] is >supposed to be for phonetic representation, right? I just asked >about this a week or two ago, too. Dammit, I've got a memory >like a sieve. :(
Don't worry, your point came accross all right :)) .
>I would expect so. Don't all languages exhibit some regional >variation?
True, even in small countries like the Netherlands :)) .
> But as I don't personally know any Afrikaners, all my >experience with the language comes from textbooks, tapes, and >ditionaries, which would (I assume) use a standard ABN sort of >Afrikaans, if such a thing exists.
Maybe a kind of "posh" Afrikaans which tries to stay close to the Dutch grandfather :))) . Christophe Grandsire. You need a straight mind to invent a twisted conlang.


Tristan McLeay <kesuari@...>