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There are several phonological categories whose markedness-as inferred from typical markedness metrics- fails to match the representational complexity posited for them. More specifically, glottal stops, geminate clusters, and onsetless syllables are representationally the simplest of their category, yet other criteria, like implicational hierarchies, mark them as special. This paper aims at comprehending this paradox.

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Emancipating lenes

A reanalysis of English obstruent clusters

Acta Linguistica Academica
Author:
Péter Szigetvári

Abstract

I argue that English has no voicing assimilation, in fact, it does not have phonologically voiced segments at all. Voicing in English is spontaneous in sonorants, while obstruents may be phonetically voiced only if lenis and surrounded by spontaneously or passively voiced sounds. The paper claims that most obstruent clusters of English are traditionally misanalysed as fortis+fortis clusters. These clusters are all either fortis+lenis or lenis+fortis; in fact, fortis+fortis clusters are completely ruled out in English.

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Abstract

Following Trager & Bloch (1941), I argue that diphthongs in English are short vowels followed by a glide, that is, a consonant (Szigetvári 2016). In the present paper, I bring further evidence for this claim, based on the distribution of unstressed vowels in British English.

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Abstract

We survey templatic diminutive formation in Hungarian. We conclude that there is an intricate system of endings that are added to bases which are truncated if they contain more than one vowel. Bases are also subject to vowel length changes in both directions, as well as the palatalization of the last consonant. The templatic diminutive forms are not subject to vowel harmony occurring in suffixes which prevails in the regular additive morphology of the language. Nevertheless, these forms conform to the vowel patterns found in disyllabic monomorphemic or disyllabic suffixed word forms.

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Abstract

We look at the presuffixal vowels occurring after adjectival and nominal stems in Hungarian. We show that their “low” or “nonlow” status depends not only on the morphological category and arbitrary lexical properties of the stem, but also on its semantic properties and syntactic position, as well as the identity of the suffix and the typical environments in which the suffix occurs. Syntactic positions can be arranged in a scale ranging from more adjectival (less nominal) to less adjectival (more nominal). The same scale may be applied to suffixes typical of these syntactic positions. The lowness of the presuffixal vowels neatly follows these scales, with no variation at the two edges and a zone of variation in the middle of the scale.

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Acta Linguistica Academica
Authors:
Zoltán G. Kiss
and
Péter Szigetvári
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Acta Linguistica Hungarica
Authors:
Hans Luschützky
,
Szilárd Tátrai
,
Péter Szigetvári
,
Krisztina Károly
, and
Erika Schmidt
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