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YASGT: Adjectival agreement (was: Feminization of plurals?)

From:Benct Philip Jonsson <bpj@...>
Date:Thursday, February 12, 2009, 10:54
Andreas Johansson wrote:
> On Wed, Feb 11, 2009 at 8:53 PM, Benct Philip Jonsson > <bpj@...> wrote: >> On 2009-02-11 Andreas Johansson wrote: >>> (In speech, you'll find people who have -a >>> everywhere, ones who have -e everywhere, ones that >>> make the distinction much as in the written standard >>> (I do), and ones who draw some other distinction.) >>> >> Not in Western and Southern Sweden, where the >> distinction is still rigorously maintained. We cringe >> when people from "up country" say things like _den >> stora mannen_! > > Er? Upholding the distinction was one of the > possibilities I listed.
Sorry, write it down to ¡0 pm fatigue! I was actually mostly reacting to what you said just before:
>>> Now, I wouldn't be surprised if this disappears from the >>> written standard soon enough, but it's still mostly >>> adhered to in writing.
I can't see that happen for two reasons: 1) About ¡/3 or more of the population uphold the distinction, and the rest can't agree on how to drop it (-a or -e). 2) The ability to uphold the distinction in writing is a strong educatedness shibboleth. By comparison I recently read in "Språktidningen" that in a few decades _dom_ as a single form corresponding to _de_ and _dem_ has actually receded. Perhaps partly due to the fact that there is a noun _dom_ which is pronounced differently, but mostly due to the fact that this is an educatedness shibboleth of exactly the same kind as the adjectival agreement thing. FWIW when I speak Bohuslänska I have the -e/-a adjectival agreement distinction for all historical masculines, not only the animate ones, and I say _di_ and _dêm_, but as far as I'm concerned that is a different language. (In case you wonder about the spelling _dëm_ Bohuslänska has five phonetic front unrounded front vowels [i e E & a] which I write as _i e ê ä â_. I'm unsure about the phonemic status of [&] vs. /E/ and /a/ -- there is at least one minimal pair: [g&:n`] _gärn_ 'crazy' vs. [ga:n`] _gârn_ 'fishing nets'. It would seem like here [&:] is a conditioned allophone of /E/, but there is also [k&:r] _kär_ 'man', definite form [k&:n`] _kärn_, which corresponds to [kQ:4]~[kQ:n] /kA:r/~/kA:n/ in Gothenburgish and [kA:4(@n)] /karen/ _karl(en)_ in local careful Standard Swedish, which kind of complicates the assignment of [&] to /E/. As for the choice of symbols there is also _a_ /A/ which makes it necessary to have three symbols based on <a> in addition to the symbol for /E/, which makes the assignments above the best choices even though most words which have _ä_ in Swedish end up having _ê_. There is also _ë_ which I use for historical schwa. Synchronically "/@/" is an archiphoneme for completely unstressed /e E 8 3\/, and even with etymological info it is sometimes hard to decide which phoneme it belongs to, so it is convenient to let it have its own grapheme, not least in the absence of stress marking.) /BP 8^)> -- Benct Philip Jonsson -- melroch atte melroch dotte se ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ "C'est en vain que nos Josués littéraires crient à la langue de s'arrêter; les langues ni le soleil ne s'arrêtent plus. Le jour où elles se *fixent*, c'est qu'elles meurent." (Victor Hugo)


Andreas Johansson <andreasj@...>