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Re: Request for information: Semantics of body parts

From:Thomas R. Wier <trwier@...>
Date:Sunday, June 23, 2002, 13:57
> On Saturday 15 June 2002 11:39 am, Tim May wrote:
> I'd be interested in hearing about similar differences from English > semantics in both conlangs and natlangs.
Phaleran's anatomical terms fall within the normal range of semantics that natlangs show. So, like Arabic, there is no word for "hand" distinct from "forearm" <fus>, nor a word for "foot" distinct from "lower leg" <ipa>. However, there is a distinct word for "finger tip" <þolta>, and the word for "finger" <tû> includes the thumb <hyâ>. Head-hair (t'os) is distinct from body hair <ardos>. The word for "ear-lobe" <kela> really includes the entire aural cavity up to the just before the ear-drum <tlukes>, after which is the inner ear <pharo>. Many of more generalized vocabulary is borrowed from C'ali. The word for "torso" <folik'o> is such a word, as is the word for "leg", <þentor>. Some words are clearly of more ancient borrowing, since they (like "leg") undergo sound shifts that others don't (e.g. dental stops -> [+continuant]). Some words come along with foreign morphology: the plural of <hantu> "brain" is <hantuli>, rather than the expected <hahantu> or <hantuna>. Some words are so recent that they are not fully nativized, and are used with altered phonology <c'invi> "arch (of the foot)" [ts'] ([v] does not exist in Phaleran). ===================================================================== Thomas Wier "...koruphàs hetéras hetére:isi prosápto:n / Dept. of Linguistics mú:tho:n mè: teléein atrapòn mían..." University of Chicago "To join together diverse peaks of thought / 1010 E. 59th Street and not complete one road that has no turn" Chicago, IL 60637 Empedocles, _On Nature_, on speculative thinkers