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Morphological conditions on regular sound change? A reanalysis of *l-loss in Paamese and Southeast Ambrym

Blevins, J. and Lynch, John D. (2009) Morphological conditions on regular sound change? A reanalysis of *l-loss in Paamese and Southeast Ambrym. Oceanic Linguistics, 48 (1). pp. 111-129. ISSN 0029-8115

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Abstract

Northern Paamese and Southeast Ambrym, two languages of Central Vanuatu, share a set of sound changes involving vocalization and loss of *l. One subpart of this sound change results in loss of *l word-initially before nonhigh vowels. An interesting aspect of this sound change is that it appears to apply in all word classes except verbs. Indeed, Crowley (1997) suggests that Northern Paamese *l-loss is a clear case of sound change with grammatical conditioning. In this paper we suggest that phonological and morphological aspects of verbal inflectional paradigms have given rise to the apparent exceptionality of *l-loss in these two languages. Phonological factors result in continuation of *l, while the structure of inflectional paradigms has given rise to analogical restoration of initial /l/ in all verbs where it is expected to be lost. Under this analysis, initial *l-loss can be seen to have applied without exception, and without grammatical conditioning.

Item Type: Journal Article
Subjects: P Language and Literature > PL Languages and literatures of Eastern Asia, Africa, Oceania
Divisions: Faculty of Arts, Law and Education (FALE) > Pacific Languages Unit
Depositing User: Ms Shalni Sanjana
Date Deposited: 29 Aug 2009 16:28
Last Modified: 29 Aug 2012 16:28
URI: http://repository.usp.ac.fj/id/eprint/5245
UNSPECIFIED

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