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Re: Conflicts in loanword adaptation

From:JR <fuscian@...>
Date:Monday, September 18, 2006, 22:48
Thanks Teoh and John for the advice. It is jarring to my ears, but I guess I
will keep the initial vowel and move the stress to the beginning. I have
another problem now though - the word in Eloshtan wouldn't actually be
'galili' as I wrote before, because there is vowel harmony, and either the
front vowels or the back vowel will have to change. I went googling for
examples of this in natlangs and found only a list of four words borrowed
into Tuvan that had undergone vowel changes. But the choice of which vowels
to change there is either random or else more complex than one can determine
from so little data. Front to back and back to front are both attested, and
it doesn't follow the stressed value in the source language or in Tuvan. Any
thoughts on this??

Josh Roth

"Farewell, farewell to my beloved language,
Once English, now a vile orangutanguage."
-Ogden Nash

on 9/15/06 4:01 AM, H. S. Teoh at hsteoh@QUICKFUR.ATH.CX wrote:

> On Fri, Sep 15, 2006 at 03:10:03AM +0300, JR wrote: >> I want to have one conlang, Eloshtan, borrow the word 'galïli' from >> another conlang, Kar Marinam. The stress on that word in K.M. is on >> the second syllable, but in Eloshtan, the stress is always on the >> first syllable. So, I have two choices: either borrow the word as >> 'galili' with a different stress; or drop the first vowel, and have >> 'glili', with the stress still on the 'li'. Does anyone know what >> natlangs do in this sort of situation? What's more important, >> retaining the stress, or retaining all the original sounds? Does it >> depend on the language in question, the whims of the speakers, other >> factors? > > It depends on the language (and possibly the speakers). Stress is > usually one of the first things to go, as well as declension. > > For example, the name of the historical king Darius is correctly > accented on the /i/, not on the /a/ as most people pronounce it. But > going around saying [d@'raj@s] sounds awfully pretentious unless you're > speaking to like-clued people. > > Similarly, the correct plural of 'octopus' is 'octopodes' (Greek), but > just about nobody speaks that way. The fact is that once a word is > borrowed into a language, it becomes subject to native rules, no longer > to rules in the original language. > > Witness also 'alcohol', 'algebra', and 'algorithm', where the article of > the source language has become part of the loanword, and the stress is > placed as if these were native words. > > >> Actually, I am aware that some natlangs would go a different route and >> adopt the word as is, with the foreign stress pattern, but I don't >> think E. is ready for this. > [...] > > If it doesn't contort the native lang too much, that works. But > sometimes the target language is just so incompatibly different that you > just have to butcher the word to make it fit. > > For example, Japanese loans from English have a lot of epithentic vowels > inserted to remove consonant clusters hard for natives to pronounce, and > have consonants suitably modified to work with Japanese phonology. > Natives still consider the words foreign borrowings (which fact > apparently adds a "coolness" factor to a word). > > Mandarin is especially notorious for totally butchering names by trying > to shoehorn Western names into the trisyllabic scheme. The general > procedure is to take the first two syllables from a Western first name > (and dropping the rest), the first syllable from the last name, mold > them appropriately to fit Mandarin phonology, and then assigning to > characters meaningful related (sometimes only barely or not at all) to > the original name. Needless to say, the placement of stress in the > original is completely irrelevant: the tones in the result are freely > varied in order to find the most "meaningful" combination of characters. > > On the other end of the spectrum, some English loanwords in Russian > actually break native pronunciation rules (such as unstressed о being > pronounced [o] instead of [?] because the source language has it as > such), and spelling conventions (such as э in places where it would > never occur in a native word, in order to retain a semblance of the > original pronunciation of the loanword). > > > T
And on 9/15/06 12:09 PM, John Vertical at johnvertical@HOTMAIL.COM wrote:
> Finnish also has initial stress & I don't think there's a single loanword > which would have dropped the 1st vowel if the 2nd was stressed. Obviously > our prohibition of initial clusters helps a lot with that, but even initial > unstressed shwas get assigned stress, usually cuppled with > de-neutralization. Example: "agility" has been borrowed from English in the > meaning of the dog sport, and gets pronounced ['&gi"liti] or ['&ki"liti]. > Loanwords with non-initial stress do not exist either, but there are > sociolects (urban pre/teenagers chiefly) where phonemic stress has developed > due to influence of English & other IE langs. > > So with simple non-phonemic stress placement, I'd expect the stress not to > be even noticed. More complex kinds of non-phonemic stress (eg. syllable > weight conditioned) could be more likely to trigger phonological reshaping, > but I'd still expect the "phoneme-shape" of the word to matter more. > Borrowed stress patterns probably don't happen in single words, but maybe if > the influence were heavy & there would be plenty of such words... > > John Vertical