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German "ch" (was: Con-Alphabets & Real Languages)

From:laokou <laokou@...>
Date:Monday, December 31, 2001, 20:24
From: "Philip Newton"

> laokou wrote: > > (German, I believe, now also has the same three-way distinction for > > "ch").
> Not quite. Originally, German <ch> is [c-cedilla] or [x] or (especially > preceding <s>) [k]. Now, it's also got [tS] and [S] in loan words from > English and French (e.g. checken, Chaussee). So we've got at least a > five-way distinction there.
I should have qualified that as *initial* "ch" in German. [k] for the Greek loans (Character, Chaos), [S] for the French (Chance, Chose), and [tS] for the English (Chips, checken) (and Spanish? (Chile)). But even then, I'm not quite right. [C] occurs in "Chemie" and its derivatives, "China" and its derivatives, and "Chirurgie" and its derivatives. At first blush, I thought "i" and "e" were evoking palatalization (and I still imagine that's part of what's going on), but "Chef", "Chiffre", and "Chicorée" are marked with [S]. Dunno what that's about. Anyway, a four-way split. [x], to the best of my knowledge, does not occur initially. Didn't know about "schick" (other than the razor company). Interesting. Maybe that influenced or was influenced by....
> > (Cf. Hungarian, where "chic" is imported as "sikkes" [SIkES], "sikk" > > plus an adjectival ending "-es".
> Not [SIk:ES]? AFAIK, double consonants are distinguished from single > ones phonemically.
Yes. Brain flatulence. Kou


Philip Newton <philip.newton@...>