Re: THEORY: A possible Proto-World phonology
|From:||Lars Henrik Mathiesen <thorinn@...>|
|Date:||Friday, June 30, 2000, 11:39|
> Date: Thu, 29 Jun 2000 21:53:55 +0200
> From: BP Jonsson <bpj@...>
> BTW it has occurred to me that qualitative ablaut may originally have been
> a difference in pitch, the lower F0 getting reinterpreted/misperceived as
> having lower formants overall.
I don't think we'll ever know exactly how qualitative Ablaut arose.
One explanation that has been proposed is that it started like in
Arabic, where a distinction /a/ ~ /a:/ developed into /a/ ~ /A/. (And
that could well be the actual values of what the reconstructions write
as *e ~ *o --- Germanic has *a for PIE *o, for instance --- but it's
also possible that the vowels did go to /e/ ~ /o/ before the branches
However, IIRC that length distinction was in turn thought to come from
a stress accent, to explain why it changes between occurences of the
same morpheme. Explaining it directly from a moving pitch accent seems
just as valid to me.
Lars Mathiesen (U of Copenhagen CS Dep) <thorinn@...> (Humour NOT marked)