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Re: Tone question

From:Henrik Theiling <theiling@...>
Date:Thursday, February 2, 2006, 20:02

Erika writes:
> Mark -- > > Those are really interesting questions. I'm learning > Mandarin currently and their phrases don't use tone > for inflection or have an overall tonal arc like in > English.
>From what I have read and also heard myself, Mandarin does have
prosody. I think it may be used e.g. to mark a question without a question marker (ma) or to mark surprise (ba), etc., just like in English. Usually, prosody accompanies a sentence even when such explicit markers. You could think of it as some 'base frequency' used for phrasal intonation, which changes slowly in the sentence, plus the normal tones on the words relative to that, so that you can use both at the same time. Mark's second question has to be answered by a native speaker. But I *suppose* the difference in p/b is percieved quite similar to tone 1/tone 2. In the same way you notice that 'pa' and 'ba' have something (namely, a vowel) in common, while OTOH using a different consonant, Mandarin speakers will notice that 'ma1' and 'ma2' have something in common, but OTOH use a different tone. **Henrik -- Relay 13 is running:


Mark J. Reed <markjreed@...>
Erika <erika0100@...>