(Conlangs) Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

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(Conlangs) Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by Aszev » Wed 18 Aug 2010, 10:36

This thread is for quick questions related to the forum topic; Post your question and hopefully receive an answer here.

Examples of questions that should go here are e.g. "How should I romanize this sound?" and "What do you think about my phonology?"
Sound change works in mysterious ways.

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Re: Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by Ilaeriu » Wed 18 Aug 2010, 10:48

I'll go first :mrgreen:

Aentoui only has three stops: /b/, /t/, /k/. Is it really that weird if I have /b/ and not /p/, with /b/ being the only voiced stop in the set?

Full info on the conlang can be found inthis thread that posted here as well.
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Re: Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by imploder » Wed 18 Aug 2010, 11:20

Ilaeriu wrote:Aentoui only has three stops: /b/, /t/, /k/. Is it really that weird if I have /b/ and not /p/, with /b/ being the only voiced stop in the set?
It's not really weird, it is well attested on Earth. Look at Arabic or Berber languages. Some American language also has it. Your consonant inventory is reallistic IMHO.

I read somewhere that it has a phonetic reason and /b/ is more contrastive or what. You may find something on Wikipedia. Having /g/ but no /k/ does not happen OTOH, missing /g/ while contrasting all other stops in voicing is common. For example Czech, the language I speak, has lenited /g/ into /h\/ and /g/ occurs almost exclusively in loanwords (not talking about [g] occuring as an allophone of /k/). Voiced stops futher back in the throat (uvular) are difficult and rare - many (perhaps most) languages with /q/ do not have /G\/.
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Re: Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by Ilaeriu » Wed 18 Aug 2010, 11:30

Ah, okay, thanks! Good to know.

I agree, for some reason /b/ /t/ /k/ just feels much more natural to me than having /g/ in there as well.
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Re: Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by Arzemju » Wed 18 Aug 2010, 14:10

I have a question:
How come the finnish final /n/ is often pronounced as /h/?
I've been listening to some finnish musics and I hear alot of final -n said as /h/.
Is it a rule or is it just the singer?
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Re: Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by MrKrov » Wed 18 Aug 2010, 15:50

/b t k/ isn't that weird tho I will dispute that Arabic has that since it does have more voiced stops and the question concluded with
with /b/ being the only voiced stop in the set:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Rebooting, again, I be looking for some feedback on any so-far bad parts like conflicting phonological processes, wonky allophony, stupid gaps in inventory, whathaveyou. I've cut out the lists of not yet existent minimal pairs and am aware that the diacritic for syllabic consonants didn't show up properly (and so has been removed because it was making the consonant letters invisible).
2. Phonology and Orthography

2.1 Phoneme inventory

- has both fairly large inventory of consonants and a small inventory of vowels.

2.1.1. Consonants

The phonemic pulmonic consonants are listed in the following table.

Bilabial Alveolar Post-alveolar Palatal Velar Uvular Pharyngeal Glottal
central lateral Plain Labial Plain Plain Labial
Plosive Ejective /tʼ cʼ kʼ qʼ qʷʼ/
Aspirated /tʰ cʰ kʰ qʰ qʷʰ/
Plain /t c k q qʷ ʔ ʔʷ/
Affricate Ejective /t͡sʼ t͡ɬʼ t͡ʃʼ/
Plain /t͡s t͡ɬ t͡ʃ/
Fricative /s ɬ ʃ x χ χʷ ʕ h hʷ/
Nasal /m n ɲ ɴ/
Approximant /l j w ʁ ʁʷ/

2.1.2. Vowels

The phonemic vowels are listed in the following table.

Front Center Back
Close i ɨ u
Close-mid ə
open a

2.2. Minimal Pairs of Consonants

2.2.1. Consonant Minimal Pairs

The consonant minimal pairs are as follows.

2.2.2. Minimal Pairs of Vowels

All five vowel phonemes have at least one minimal pair with other vowels.

2.3. Allophony

There is minimal allophony.

2.3.1. Consonant Allophones

The - consonants have - allophony.

The palatal plosives are allophones of the velar plosives before, and only before, /i/.
The labialized uvulars are allophones of the plain uvulars before, and only before, /u/.
[ɴʷ] is an allophone of /ɴ/ before /u/.
The labialized glottals are allophones of the plain glottals before, and only before, /u/.
Syllabic nasals /m̩ n̩ ɲ ɴ̩ɴ/ are allophones of nonsyllabic nasals /m̩ n̩ ɲ ̩ɴ/ when nonadjecent to vowels.
Syllabic approximants /l̩ ʁ ʁʁ̩ʷ/ are allophones of nonsyllabic approximants /l ʁ ʁʷ/ when nonadjecent to vowels. The approximants /j w/ only become /i u/ in stressed syllables; otherwise, an epenthetic /ɨ/ is inserted before or after them.
[p] is an allophone of /ʔʷ/ before /u/.
[ç] is an allophone of /h/ before /i/.

2.3.2. Vowel Allophones

Vowels have minimal allophony, mostly concerning the high vowels.

All vowels have pharyngealized allophones in words with at least one pharyngeal consonant: [iˤ ɨˤ uˤ əˤ aˤ].
[ɑ] is an allophone of /a/ before nasal or uvular onsets.
[o] is an allophone of /a/ after /m/ labialized consonants.

Some expected allophony doesn't occur.
Vowels aren't nasalized before or after nasals.

2.4. Phonological Constraints

The basic syllable structure is C(C)V(C), with mandatory onsets and nucleuses and optional codas.

2.4.1. Onsets

Any single consonant is permitted as an onset: /m tʼ tʰ t t͡sʼ t͡s s n t͡ɬʼ t͡ɬ ɬ l t͡ʃʼ t͡ʃ ʃ cʼ cʰ c ɲ j kʼ kʰ k x w qʼ qʰ q χ ɴ ʁ̞ qʷʼ qʷʰ qʷ χʷ ʁ̞ʷ ʔ h ʔʷ hʷ/. Clusters in the onset are limited to a single plosive (excluding /ʔ/) followed by a single approximant.

2.4.2. Nucleuses

Any single vowel, syllabic nasal or approximant is permitted as a nucleus: /i ɨ u ə a m̩ n̩ ɲ̩ ɴ̩ l̩ ʁ̩ ʁ̩ʷ/. There are no diphthongs.

2.4.3. Codas

Any single consonant is permitted as an optional coda.

2.5. Phonological Processes

2.5.1. Consonant processes

There are minimal consonant processes.

2.5.1.1. Aspirated Stop Dissimilation

There may not be two adjecent syllables with aspirated stops. The first such syllable will dissimilate to simple plosives.

2.5.1.2. Notable Absent Processes

2.5.1.2.1. Nasal Place Assimilation

Nasal consonants as a coda don't assimilate to the place of articulation of preceding onsets. Ex: kanpa > kanpa

2.5.2. Vowel Processes

There are minor vowel processes.

2.5.2.1. Vowel Reduction

High vowels in unstressed syllables reduce to /ɨ/.

2.5.2.2. Syncope

The first of two consecutive and nonidentical vowels is elided, with labialization if possible before elided /u/. Ex: t͡ʃʼəqʼu + ansɨ > t͡ʃʼəqʷʼansɨ.
/ə/ is always elided where it would produce syllabic nasals or approximants. Ex: mət͡ʃʼəmqʷʼa > mt͡ʃʼʼmqʷʼa
/ə/ is always elided in syllables before other morphemes when it wouldn't violate phonotactics. Ex: t͡ɬʼiχə + ca > t͡ɬʼiχca

2.5.3. Consonant Vowel Harmony

Vowels become pharyngealized in words with at least one pharyngeal consonant /ʕ/. Ex: tinə + ʕaˤɬ > tiˤnʕaˤɬ
In words without a pharyngeal consonant, no vowels are pharyngealized.

2.5.4. Epenthesis

The default epenthetic vowel is /ə/.
Epenthesis doesn't occur between simple stops and glottal stops; the glottal stop drops out and the simple stop is replaced with the ejective equivalent. Ex: sətʔ > sətʼ

2.6. Prosody

2.6.1. Stress

Primary stress occurs contrastively only on a root syllable. Secondary stress occurs every two syllables to the right after that.

Neither /ɨ/ or /ə/ are ever stressed. If stress would fall on such a syllable, it moves to the syllable with /a/ nearest the root.

2.6.2. Length

2.6.2.1. Consonant gemination

2.6.2.2. Vowel length

Three of the vowels have distinctive long counterparts, short /i u a/ as compared to long /iː uː aː/.

2.7. Transcription

All affixes listed in the grammar and syntax sections will be in IPA.

2.7.1. Phoneme Inventory

2.7.1.1. Consonants

Bilabial Alveolar Post-alveolar Palatal Velar Uvular Pharyngeal Glottal
Central Lateral Plain Labial Plain Plain Labial
Plosive Ejective <tʼ çʼ kʼ qʼ qʷʼ>
Aspirated <tʰ çʰ kʰ qʰ qʷʰ>
Simple <t ç k q qʷ ʔ ʔʷ>
Affricate Ejective <cʼ ƛʼ čʼ>
Simple <c ƛ č>
Fricative <s ł š x ẋ ẋʷ ʕ h hʷ>
Nasal <m n ñ ṅ>
Approximant <l y w r rʷ>

2.7.1.2. Vowels

Front Central Back
Close i ɨ u
Close-mid ə
open a

Pharyngealization of vowels is unwritten as it's merely a phonetic detail.

2.7.2. Prosody

2.7.2.1. Stress

Stress is differentiated in writing by the use or absence of an acute diacritic for the unpredictably stressed syllables. It isn't added to <i> or <u>, which are already stressed, or to <ɨ> or <ə>, which are never stressed.

short long
unstressed a a
stressed á áá

2.7.2.1.1. Vowel Length

Long vowels are differentiated from short vowels in writing by the use of doubling of vowel letters for long vowels.
Ways to flesh it out would be good because this is quite frankly piddly in length.
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Re: Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by InquisitorJL » Wed 18 Aug 2010, 15:52

Quick romanisation question...

I've got this consonant phoneme inventory

Aspirated Plosives /pʰ tʰ kʰ qʰ/ <ph th kh qh>
Plosives /p b t d k q/ <p b t d k q>
Affricates /ʨ ʤ/ <ti di>
Fricatives /f v s z ɕ ʑ x ʁ h/ <f v s z si zi ȝ* g h>
Nasals /m n ɲ ŋ/ <m n ni nk>
Approximants /ɹ j/ <r i>
Laterals /l ʎ/ <l li>

I really don't like using <x> for /x/, I just don't like how it looks. I'm considering using <ȝ> but that doesn't seem to fit the rest of the romanisation either. What other alternatives are there for romanising /x/?
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Re: Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by rickardspaghetti » Wed 18 Aug 2010, 15:54

Perhaps <ch>?
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俺はその証だ。
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Re: Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by Itsuki Kohaku » Wed 18 Aug 2010, 15:58

ð, A bunch of various digraphes.

Orthography doesn't have to resemble Western ones.
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Re: Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by sangi39 » Wed 18 Aug 2010, 16:26

InquisitorJL wrote:Quick romanisation question...

I've got this consonant phoneme inventory

Aspirated Plosives /pʰ tʰ kʰ qʰ/ <ph th kh qh>
Plosives /p b t d k q/ <p b t d k q>
Affricates /ʨ ʤ/ <ti di>
Fricatives /f v s z ɕ ʑ x ʁ h/ <f v s z si zi ȝ* g h>
Nasals /m n ɲ ŋ/ <m n ni nk>
Approximants /ɹ j/ <r i>
Laterals /l ʎ/ <l li>

I really don't like using <x> for /x/, I just don't like how it looks. I'm considering using <ȝ> but that doesn't seem to fit the rest of the romanisation either. What other alternatives are there for romanising /x/?

Well, you're not currently using <j> which would fall in line with Spanish orthography and since it's a romanisation can we assume this will not regularly be used by native speakers of the language (since romanisations by definition are the representation of another writing system using "latin" letters)?

Alternatively you could use <ch> or, possibly through simplifaction of an older romanisation which used <ch>, you could use <c>, with the old <h> element of the digraph falling out of use with a possible rule emerging that <h> in digraphs is reserved for marking aspiration.
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Re: Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by InquisitorJL » Wed 18 Aug 2010, 17:09

Thanks for the responses. I think I'll go with <ch>, or maybe just <c>, though as sangi pointed out it's not that important. I'm not sure whether this is going to be a stand along language, or if I'm gonna use it as a proto lang but either way they aren't actually going to be using the latin alphabet.
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Re: Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by Wanderer » Wed 18 Aug 2010, 17:47

Ilaeriu wrote:Aentoui only has three stops: /b/, /t/, /k/. Is it really that weird if I have /b/ and not /p/, with /b/ being the only voiced stop in the set?
Like Imploder said, it is not that uncommon, though usually a language has something to make up for it. For example in Arabic historical /p/ lenited into /f/. Similar things have happened in other languages with /b/ and /f/, but no /p/.
In Önge there is a voiced and voiceless labial stop, but the voiceless one is actually labiovelar. So you have /b/ and /kʷ/, but no /p/ or /f/.

You can just not have /p/ and get away with it, but maybe it would be intresting to think about how this reasonably uncommon phenomenon came into being in your conlang? :-P

imploder wrote:I read somewhere that it has a phonetic reason and /b/ is more contrastive or what. You may find something on Wikipedia. Having /g/ but no /k/ does not happen OTOH, missing /g/ while contrasting all other stops in voicing is common. For example Czech, the language I speak, has lenited /g/ into /h\/ and /g/ occurs almost exclusively in loanwords (not talking about [g] occuring as an allophone of /k/). Voiced stops futher back in the throat (uvular) are difficult and rare - many (perhaps most) languages with /q/ do not have /G\/.
I think there is a claim that Pirahã has /g/ but no /k/, but it's quite dubious. Somebody claimed [k] is an optional realization of /hi/. 8-)
There are indeed many languages that have /q/ but no /ɢ/, but there are also languages with /ɢ/ and no /q/. For instance Persian.
Many languages have /k/ but not /g/, that is indeed true. It makes a lot of sense what you're saying about /b/ and /g/.
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Re: Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by Ilaeriu » Thu 19 Aug 2010, 01:48

Wanderer wrote:
Ilaeriu wrote:Aentoui only has three stops: /b/, /t/, /k/. Is it really that weird if I have /b/ and not /p/, with /b/ being the only voiced stop in the set?
Like Imploder said, it is not that uncommon, though usually a language has something to make up for it. For example in Arabic historical /p/ lenited into /f/. Similar things have happened in other languages with /b/ and /f/, but no /p/.
In Önge there is a voiced and voiceless labial stop, but the voiceless one is actually labiovelar. So you have /b/ and /kʷ/, but no /p/ or /f/.

You can just not have /p/ and get away with it, but maybe it would be intresting to think about how this reasonably uncommon phenomenon came into being in your conlang? :-P
Ah, I have /f/. I'll say that my conlang is in a similar position as Arabic, then. How convenient. Thanks! :mrgreen:
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Re: Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by Arzemju » Thu 19 Aug 2010, 01:57

Ilaeriu wrote:I'll go first :mrgreen:

Aentoui only has three stops: /b/, /t/, /k/. Is it really that weird if I have /b/ and not /p/, with /b/ being the only voiced stop in the set?

Full info on the conlang can be found inthis thread that posted here as well.
As other said, this is not uncommom, it is much more realistic than a language with /p b t d k g/.

This makes your conlang much more realistic than alot of others. One of my conlangs (I can't really says its a conlang, i just made a phoneme inventory xD) had /p t d k/, having only one voiced stop.
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Re: Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by MrKrov » Thu 19 Aug 2010, 03:58

I can haz feedback at least on this one orthography question? Since <c> is already reserved for /t͡ʃ/, should I be using <ç> as a a base for the palatal plosives or <ċ>?
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Re: Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by Arzemju » Thu 19 Aug 2010, 11:22

MrKrov wrote:I can haz feedback at least on this one orthography question? Since <c> is already reserved for /t͡ʃ/, should I be using <ç> as a a base for the palatal plosives or <ċ>?
I would probably of used <ç> for /t͡ʃ/ and <c> for /c/

You should ask yourself ONE question: "How would an english speaker pronounce this?"
With this question you can avoid sounds with weird letters assignations. (like for example <x> for /r/)
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Re: Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by sangi39 » Thu 19 Aug 2010, 13:23

MrKrov wrote:I can haz feedback at least on this one orthography question? Since <c> is already reserved for /t͡ʃ/, should I be using <ç> as a a base for the palatal plosives or <ċ>?
I'd say this might be better answered by seeing the rest of the phoneme inventory and possibly some hisotry behind the 'lang if any exists.
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Re: Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by MrKrov » Thu 19 Aug 2010, 14:43

...I posted it on the previous page. It's more or less still accurate. And I blundered; I'm using <c> for <ts> and <č> for <tʃ>.
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Re: Q&A Thread - Quick questions go here

Post by sangi39 » Thu 19 Aug 2010, 14:53

MrKrov wrote:...I posted it on the previous page. It's more or less still accurate. And I blundered; I'm using <c> for <ts> and <č> for <tʃ>.
Ah yes, I was meant to ask about that. You say "the palatal plosives are allophones of the velar plosives before, and only before, /i/". Does this mean that palatal plosives are only allophones or that the velars merge with the palatals before /i/? If it's the former then, using a phonemic script, you wouldn't actually need a distinct graphemes for palatals. However, if it's the former or you were aiming for a phonetic script then personally I think <ç> works perfectly fine for the palatal plosive. However, you could also use <z> for /ts/ following German orthography and mark /c/ using <c> and keep <č> for /tʃ/ :)

Oh, and this is just me, but I think <l> might do well for /ɬ/. Just simpler methinks :)
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