Re: [tied] Re: crows and the glottalic theory

From: Patrick C. Ryan
Message: 16652
Date: 2002-11-09

----- Original Message -----
From: "Miguel Carrasquer" <mcv@...>
To: <>
Sent: Friday, November 08, 2002 4:02 PM
Subject: Re: [tied] Re: crows and the glottalic theory

> On Fri, 8 Nov 2002 09:21:06 -0600, "Patrick C. Ryan"
> <proto-language@...> wrote:
> >Speaking only for American English, of which I am a native speaker,
> >both initial and final /d/ are voiced in all dialects known to me.
> >
> >Where did you get such information?

> It's a well known fact (it applies of course not only to /d/, but to
> /b/ and /g/ as well), and you can easily verify this for yourself.

Dear Miguel:

I do not believe it is a well-known "fact". And, after your original assertion, I was unable to verify it easily or uneasily.

> During the closure of /b/, /d/, /g/ in absolute initial or absolute
> final position (i.e. when preceded or followed by voicelessness),
> there is no vibration of the vocal chords at all.

In the dialect of American English (Midwestern) which I speak, and the "standard" English of broadcast, and in the dialect of Araknsas where I presently reside, this is simply and unequivocally untrue.

An initial voiced stop (/b, d, g/) is pronounced as a sequence of voice (vibration) preceding the occlusion.

In final position, a voiced stop (/b, d, g/) is realized in two different ways: 1) in casual speech, voice (vibration) again precedes the occlusion which has the effect of of seeming to lengthen the vowel; in deliberate or emphatic speech, the voiced stop is followed by voice.

> In initial
> position, the difference between /dV-/ and /tV-/ is of voice onset
> time: for /dV-/, voicing (vocal chord vibrations) starts immediately
> after the consonant, and the vowel is fully voiced ([tV-]). For
> /tV-/, the initial part of the vowel is voiceless (/h/), and voicing
> starts later ([thV-)].

I see no great benefit in terming the aspiration (/h/) following an initial voiceless stop as a 'voiceless vowel'. Would you then consider /h/ ([h]) a voiceless vowel?

In final position, the difference between
> /-Vt/ and /-Vd/ is mainly vowel length: /-Vt/ is realized as [-Vt_]
> ([t_] = unexploded stop), sometimes with preglottalization [-V?t_], or

I have never heard a dialect of English with glotallization in this position.

> in certain British variants with aspiration/affrication [-Vth] /
> [-Vts], whereas /-Vd/ is [-V:t_], with lengthened vowel.
> I'm not making this up. Consult any English phonetics manual (e.g.
> Ladefoged "A Course in Phonetics", 3rd.ed., chapter 3 "The Consonants
> of English", p. 50, sample quote: "Most speakers of American English
> have no voicing during the closure of so-called voiced stops in
> sentence initial position").

I think we are mixing apples and oranges here. First, I would question the source of Ladefoged's "most". I, personally, am not aware of any difference between sentence internal voiced stops and sentence initial voiced stops.

Secondly, if you wish to claim your "absolute initial" is equivalent to Ladefoged's "sentence initial", then why do you seem to apply that to _all_ initial voiced stops. Above you seem to be neglecting this additional qualification, the validity of which I hold in serious doubt.


PATRICK C. RYAN | PROTO-LANGUAGE@... (501) 227-9947 * 9115 W. 34th St. Little Rock, AR 72204-4441 USA WEBPAGES: PROTO-LANGUAGE: and PROTO-RELIGION: "Veit ec at ec hecc, vindgá meiði a netr allar nío, geiri vndaþr . . . a þeim meiþi, er mangi veit, hvers hann af rótom renn." (Hávamál 138)