A Historical Phonology of the Upper and Lower Sorbian by Gunter Schaarschmidt

By Gunter Schaarschmidt

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Extra info for A Historical Phonology of the Upper and Lower Sorbian Languages (Historical Phonology of the Slavic languages)

Sample text

Restructuring the vowel system Following the second palatalization ofvelars and the changes affectingj-cLusters, but probably concomitantly with the labialization offront vowels, the vowel system of CS underwent a basic restructuring, as a result of which long and short vowels changed into qualitatively distinct vowels, resulting in effect in the loss of phonemic quantity. The first step in this restructuring process was the rise of the nasal vowels f {J as phonetic variants of the sequence VN, where N = m, n, in an environment not before vowels.

In terms of relative chronology~ it seems that the process, Drat least the conditions that gave rise to assibilation, no longer existed at the time of the metathesis ofHquids (see chapter 14) and the loss ofthejers (see chapter 19). This seems to follow from the fact that where the sequences pr tr kr arose due to metathesis or the loss of ajer.. there is no sibilant reflex of r in MoSo. Conversely, such reflexes exist in P and Cz for r'. Examples include USo tree 'rub', LSo tres < *terti, cf. P tnee [tsec], Cz tflU [tfUi], Sk triet'; USo tTjes 'rub' 2 sg, LSo old tres (by analogy to tres inf), today only trejos < ·tbres;, cf.

Pb Cz led; USo sotra (with loss of s; see chapter 35), LSo sOlsa, cf. Pb sestrii, Cz sestra; USo wjesoly 'joyful" LSo wjasoty. cf. Cz veselY. , USa LSo wjedro 'weather" 10. The labialization of front vowels 35 LSo dial (Muka) wjadro, cr. OP (SEJP) wiodro 'clear weather'; USo LSo pletu 'plait, weave' 1 sg, USo plesc inf, LSo plasc, ef. , USo njesc inf, LSo njasc, cf. P niosf, niesc; USo koJeso 'wheel~ bicycle', LSo kolaso, cf. P dial (HEW) kolosa 'carriage, coach' pt However, unlike in the later change e> 0, where the un systematic distribution of forms showing the change is related to non-structural reasons (see chapter 24), the lack of the global application of ell > oa is structurally motivated (see below).

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