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/x/ and 'inter-Germanic' (was: Intergermansk)

From:Ray Brown <ray.brown@...>
Date:Saturday, January 29, 2005, 18:11
On Friday, January 28, 2005, at 07:51 , Benct Philip Jonsson wrote:

> Ray Brown wrote: > >> I had not realized, I admit, that /S/ in modern Swedish was now >> (generally/ >> always?) pronounced [x]. That is interesting, and parallels the change of >> earlier Spanish /S/ to the modern /X/ as, for example, in _Mexico_ >> /'meSiko/ --> _Mejico_ /'meXiko/. > > It has been spreading northward from southernmost Sweden for more > than a century -- apparently reaching the Stockholm area after the > WW2 period, but it has not yet reached the northern half of Sweden, > where we instead find merger of earlier /S/ and /rs/,
Presumably as [s`]?
> nor has it > reached the Swedish-speaking parts of Finland where /S/ actually > is realized [s\] -- the actual pronunciation of traditional "/C/" > on the mainland --, while "/C/" is [ts\] and /rs/ is still [rs].
So [x] is not even universal in Swedish - nor, it appears, is the ich-laut universal there either. Interesting.
> One often cited reason for the spread of [x] is the "need" to > preserve the distinction against /rs/ [s`], but that does not > hold true of the area where [x] originated, since they have > [Rs] for /rs/.
I suppose it could argued that twofold development of /S/ --> [x], and /rs/ --> [Rs] are both reactions to an earlier tendency to realize both sounds as [s`]. It could be that use of the uvular [R] for the one development gave rise to the shift to [x] ([X]?) for the other. Actually, despite what Andreas & Pascal have subsequently written, it is fairly obvious that my original remark has not been shown to be in correct: {quote} The Folkspraak Charter stated: "The primary design principle is that Folkspraak omit any linguistic feature not common to most of the modern Germanic languages." So it omits /x/ as it doesn't occur in English (and indeed seems to present the same sort of problems to my fellow countryman as /T/ nd /D/ do to yours) nor the continental Scandinavian languages (tho it does occur in Afrikaans :) {\quote} I did write /x/ and NOT [x]. There is a difference! It is quite clear from Philip's mail that Swedish does not have /x/; it is just that some varieties of Swedish have [x] as a realization of the phoneme /S/, while in other Swedish speaking areas it is realized as [s`] or [s\]. Ray =============================================== =============================================== Anything is possible in the fabulous Celtic twilight, which is not so much a twilight of the gods as of the reason." [JRRT, "English and Welsh" ]


Andreas Johansson <andjo@...>
Benct Philip Jonsson <bpj@...>/x/ and 'inter-Germanic'