Re: Coronals and inflections
|From:||John Vertical <johnvertical@...>|
|Date:||Monday, August 13, 2007, 8:09|
>Claes Garlén notes in _Svenskans fonologi_ (Studentlitteratur, 1988) that the
>inflectional endings of Swedish contain only coronal consonants (and vowels),
>and goes on to say that coronals predominate in such endings the world over.
>That is true as far as I can tell, but my typological knowledge is heavily
>biased towards IE languages. Can anyone here expand on the matter; and in
>particular, is there an explanation for it?
Finnish does also fit the pattern, which is principally due to m p k > n u 0 / _#
(and erlier, N > k, n / _#). In more general, this is probably related to the
prevalence of coronals in the coda position (dunno if there's an articulatory
explanation for that), and that in any language there are usually more coronal
*phonemes* than labials or dorsals (let alone radicals/glottals): If one
considers derivational endings as well, at least in Finnish /k/ becomes at least
as common (if not more) as /t/... but there's no /x L\ M\/, and only
marginal /N/, to counter /s l r n/.