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By Donka Minkova

Phonological evolution is a big part of the final background of the language; the subject material is either major by itself phrases and correct in curricular phrases. This e-book describes the segmental and prosodic adjustments within the heritage of English, offers analyses of those adjustments either as phonological occasions and with regards to the evolution of interlocking features of prior English and highlights the relevance of the themes and doubtless generate additional curiosity by way of projecting historic phonological swap onto Present-Day English and its types. the improvement of the English sound procedure is one of the top studied a part of the heritage of the language, even though no up to date, student-friendly survey exists: this ebook fills the space.

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A Historical Phonology of English

Phonological evolution is an important component to the final historical past of the language; the subject material is either major by itself phrases and correct in curricular phrases. This booklet describes the segmental and prosodic adjustments within the heritage of English, presents analyses of those alterations either as phonological occasions and relating to the evolution of interlocking features of past English and highlights the relevance of the subjects and probably generate additional curiosity through projecting old phonological switch onto Present-Day English and its forms.

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Again, positioning of the vowels within the cells is not absolutely fixed; it is a descriptive convenience to highlight contrasts, but the realisations will vary with individual speakers or communities. 4 presents an overview of the vowels of English. 4 provides only a basic frame of reference. Except for the mid central unrounded vowel schwa, [ə], it shows an inventory of the vowels in stressed syllables; that inventory is considerably impoverished in the absence of stress, where [ə] may contrast with [i], as in Rosa’s [-ə-] roses [i] or tilde, salad, balanced, cherub, welcome, hydrangea, nostalgia with [ə] vs spinach, sandwich, ceiling, language with [i].

Syllabic sonorants can be functionally equivalent to a vowel only in unstressed syllables. 5 5 See Cruttenden (2008: 156), whose counts were based on colloquial SSBE. Reports THE SOUNDS OF ENGLISH 35 The upper mid central symbols / / (GA) or / / (SSBE), as in represent the development of the vowel preceding historical /r/ in such words as BIRD, WORD, HEARD, CURD, SIR. The phonetic realisation of the NURSE vowel in GA is [ ], that is, right-hook schwa for the r-colouring, which is present throughout the vowel; in faster speech it could be simply a syllabic [r].

While suffixation in OE never changed the stress of the stem, suffixation in PDE can shift the main stress away from the root: hónour-honourée, állergy-allérgic, ségmentsegmentátion, sólid-solídify). Another way in which the presence of a French-speaking social elite in England after the Conquest was felt was the shift in modes of versification. As we will see in Chapter 10, OE poetic composition lies firmly within the Germanic alliterative tradition; the verse line was held together by alliteration, which is consistently associated with the first sound of the stressed syllable of a word.

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