Review of Stage II
Last time, we changed quite a few things from Stage I. The phonemes *p, *b, *d, *g, *z and *j were created while *ʔ got lost, and also *x changed to other things or was lost in many places. The phonemic difference between aspirated and unaspirated *t, *k and *tʰ, kʰ has been weakened in unstressed with the emergence of the voiced consonants *b, *d and *g.
|plosives||*p *b||*t *d||*k *g|
We also created the vowel phonemes *e, *o and *ɨ while weakening *ə, as well as creating long versions of all of them (except for *ə) and the diphthongs *iɪ, *ɨɪ, *uɪ and *aɪ:
Stage II to Stage III
1. Palatalization of *Cj sequences:
- *j → *ʲ / C _
2. Simplification of word-final coda clusters:
- *C₂ → Ø / VC₁ _ #
Word-final coda clusters get simplified by losing the last consonant, e.g. like
- *a.kúsk → *a.kús → *kús,
- *ga.táns → *ga.tán and
- *pu.kʰánt → *pu.kʰán.
3. Apocope in post-tonal unstressed open syllables:
- *V → Ø / [–stress] C _ #
Vowels in post-tonal open syllables get lost but only under the condition of not creating new final clusters. Examples:
- *í.da → íd,
- *ká.ga → kág and
- *náː.dʲa → náːdʲ.
This change may have gone through a stage akin to Latvian weak final vowels or by a weakening of the vowel to ?ə, which was subsequently lost, as e.g. in many Upper German dialects (Kariņš 15–34; König 159, Paul 109–111). This change goes hand in hand with the next one:
4. Vowel reduction in unstressed open monosyllables:
- *V → *ə / # [–stress] (C) C _ #
Example: *ga → *gə.
5. Loss of short-vowel only and schwa-containing simple initial unstressed syllables:
- *V[–long] → Ø / [–stress] # _ $
- *Cə → Ø / [–stress] # _ $
- *əC → Ø / [–stress] # _ $
- *u.kʰɨ́ɪt → *kʰíət;
- *gə.krú → *krú; and
- *əŋ.sú → *sú.
6. Loss of *r with compensatory lengthening:
- *VCr → *VːC
Long vowels and diphthongs don’t get extra length, again. Example: *káː.dra → *ká:.da.
7. Weakening of initial *x:
- *x → Øː / _ a
- *x → *j / _ [–back]
- *x → *w / _ [+back]
*x weakens to a labial and palatal approximant respectively before back and non-back vowels; it drops out completely before *a (possibly going through *x → ?ɰ → Ø). In all cases, it leaves compensatory lengthening behind. Examples:
- *xá.gas → *áː.gas;
- *xís.kri → *jíːs.kri; and
- *xú.gʲu → *xúgʲ → *wúːgʲ → *úːgʲ.
8. *ns simplifies:
- *ns → *s
Example: *sáns.kun → *sás.kun.
9. Generate diphthongs with *ʊ:
- *(w)u → *ʊ / V _
- *w → Ø / _ u
Again, don’t create long diphthongs. Examples:
- *da.wús → *dáʊs;
- *tɨ́ws.tal → *tə́ʊs.tal.
10. Avoid vowel hiatus:
- *ɪ → *j / V _ V
- *ʊ → *w / V _ V
A diphthong in *ɪ with another vowel following is turned into a *VjV sequence to avoid hiatus. The same goes for *VʊV, where *ʊ turns into *w.1 Example: rúɪ.wuk → ?rúɪʊk → *rú.juk.
11. Open *iɪ, *ɨɪ, lower *iʊ, *ɨʊ:
- *iɪ, ɨɪ → *iə
- *iʊ, ɨʊ → *əʊ
- *nas.kɨ́ɪs → *nas.kíəs,
- *síɪ.sa → *síəs;
- *i.kʰɨ́wk → … → *kʰɨ́ʊ → *kʰə́ʊ,
- *kɨ́w.ku → *kɨ́ʊ.ku → *kə́ʊ.ku.
12. Initial stress
13. Move length from long unstressed vowel to preceding short stressed vowel:
- *V́ … *Vː → *V́ː … *V
This is in parallel with the stress shift, though not limited to words that experienced it. Again, no long diphthongs or doubly long vowels. Examples:
- *su.túːs (→ ?sú.tuːs) → *súː.tus;
- *táŋ.goːm → *táːŋ.gom.
14. Apocope of *ə:
- *ə → Ø / V C _ #
Where it still exists, drop final *ə, but only so that there are no final consonant clusters. Example: *té.srə → téː.sə → *téːs.
15. Lowering of remaining *ə:
- *ə → *a (except in diphthongs *iə, *əʊ)
This gets finally rid of all *ə, basically.4 Example: *sá.gəs → *sá.gas.
Phonemic Inventory for Stage III
In this stage, we did … things! Most radically, a stress shift to first syllables. We also kind of killed off schwa and created diphthongs with *ʊ. The consonant inventory hasn’t changed much, but there are palatalized variants of *d, *k, *g and *s (at the very least) now. This feels kind of imbalanced, so we will see some more regularization in the next step.
|plosives||*p *b||*t *d||*k *g|
|high||*i, *iː||*ɨ, *ɨː||*u, *uː|
|mid||*e, *eː||*o, *oː|
- Kariņš, A. Krišjānis. “Vowel Deletion in Latvian.” Language Variation and Change 7.1 (1995): 15–34. Print.
- König, Werner. DTV-Atlas Deutsche Sprache. 16th ed. Munich: Deutscher Taschenbuch Verlag, 1994. Print. 159.
- Paul, Hermann. Mittelhochdeutsche Grammatik. Eds. Thomas Klein, Hans-Joachim Solms et al. 25th ed. Tübingen: Niemeyer, 2007. Print. 109–111.
- Corrected the sound change in section 11 to also include *ɨʊ as per my commenting – I made a mistake with the regex again. There are still no attested cases of *iʊ → *əʊ in my testing word list, but there are definitely cases of *ɨʊ → *əʊ. I also corrected the list of resulting phonemes accordingly.
- This is not attested as happening in my list of 2000 generated words, so I don’t know if it actually happens. ↩
- Or more accurately, because reasons. ↩
- My Python script also has a thing here to clean up weird syllabifications: VCCV → VC.CV; CCC → CC.C everywhere else; VCV → V.CV. This doesn’t always work perfectly, but well enough to require very little manual fixing. ↩
- Not sure if this is believable, but let’s go with it for now. I guess, you could also interpret this as *ɐ (〈a〉 on its head if it doesn’t appear as such), rather. ↩