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Re: THEORY: Voiceless vowels [was Re: Missing Parts]

From:Nik Taylor <fortytwo@...>
Date:Saturday, June 29, 2002, 21:50
Roger Mills wrote:
> How about final nasal plus vowel? I'd assume no devoicing there. > > What is the rule for word-medial devoicing? My impression is "between > voiceless stops", but how about ...s__[vl.stop]... ? I also have the > impression it involves /i, u/ more than the low vowels??
It's only high vowels, /u/ more than /i/, spoken more than sung. Not sure how formality plays into this. It's between voiceless consonants or after a voiceless consonant word-finally. So, _sutoraiku_ (borrowing of "strike"), for example, is often pronounced [sM_0toraik_0] (or even [s=toraik_0]). Incidentally, _u_ between identical voiceless consonants is very rare. It tends to lead to geminates, for example, _gaku_ "study" + _kou_ "school" -> _gakkou_ "school", boku "wood(en)" + ken "sword" -> bokken "wooden practice sword"
> A friend once maintained that the "correct" pronunciation of _sukiyaki_ was > more like "skiyaki", (I suppose [s=kiyaki]) which seems possible though I've > never noticed it e.g. in Japanese restaurants.
Well, [sMkiyaki] isn't actually wrong (I have, in fact, heard that pronunciation once or twice), but [sM_0] or [s=] would be more common. In fact, I think the voiced vowel would mostly only be used by children or in song. -- "There's no such thing as 'cool'. Everyone's just a big dork or nerd, you just have to find people who are dorky the same way you are." - overheard ICQ: 18656696 AIM Screen-Name: NikTaylor42