Re: [tied] Re: the true nature of

From: Jens Elmegaard Rasmussen
Message: 14145
Date: 2002-07-25

I am being criticized with arguments that are in reality in favour of what
I wrote. It does not matter that I picked examples with two dental
producing /ss/, but if it matters to you, use your own examples which
convey the same message. Then pictus, strictus are relic forms without
restoration of the voiced stop, while pango pa:ctus did reintroduce voiced
/g/, so that *paktos became *pagtos which was then set on a course to
become *pa:gtos > *pa:ktos > pa:ctus by what may be regarded exceptionless
phonetic development. Again, a phonetic change acts on what the language
has. In a given period /Vgt/ becomes /V:kt/, while /Vkt/ is unchanged; the
releant prestage of pa:ctus had /Vgt/, that of pictus had /Vkt/. Analogy
is hardly ever all-pervasive.

I do not buy the arguments thrown at the ss-forms. There is a perfectly
regular change going on, whereby two dentals produce a geminate /ss/ which
is subsequently simplified to /s/ (but, notably, not to -r-!) after a long
vowel. The last part of the change is still ongoing in the earlies Latin
texts, and of course inscriptions do not always use double letter to mark
geminates. But it all comes out regular in the end, so wait and use the
younger forms where confusion is negligeable.


On Thu, 25 Jul 2002, P&G wrote:

> >On Lachmann's Law
> >That there is no
> >*pervasive* lengthening before, say, suffixal /t/ in roots ending in
> >mediae is clear from the counterexamples which are very solid: fissus,
> >sessus, scissus. Interestingly, tussis 'cough' has short u, while
> >the ptc. tu:sus 'hurt, struck' has /u:/.
> (1) tu:sus probably gets its length along with the alternative form,
> tu:nsus, with regular lengthening before /ns/.  The usual pattern in
> Latin
> is -Vns > -V:ns > -V:s and sometimes reinsertion of the -n-.  Therefore
> both
> tu:sus and tu:nsus are expected outcomes of short u before ns, even if
> this
> ns < *nd + tos.  Compare the forms from tendo:  here the alternatives are
> tentum (short vowel!) and te:nsum (vowel lengthened before ns).
> (2) Your counterexamples are all in -ss-.   These cannot be persuasive,
> because of the  variation in early inscriptions between -Vss- and -V:s-.
> Whatver the origin of these forms, analogical pressure was at work during
> the recorded history of Latin pushing some forms to -Vss- and others
> to -V:s-.
> (3) Other counterexamples can be found instead, for example pingo pictum,
> stringo strictum.  These are less numerous than the forms in -s-/-ss-, so
> its a shame the -s-/-ss- forms are not totally reliable.
> Peter
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