the three "n" s

Tom Zurinskas truespel at HOTMAIL.COM
Tue Mar 24 18:24:32 UTC 2009

Good one.  Homorganic. defines it as Articulated in the same area of the vocal tract, as (t) and (n). A strictly linguistic term no less.

Yet we know (n) can vary in place of articulation.  Let's just call that a bad example.  (n) next to (g) and (k) apply as well.

By your saying "there is no phonemic contrast in nasals before a consonant" I take it you mean that the "n"s sound the same, such as for "winter, finger, danger"?  I would agree.  So the symbol /N/ is misleading, because the ~n sound doesn't change.  It's really the "g" that's the changer.  So the symbol would better be represented by /G/.  But if the "g" is not spoken at all, why include it at all.  Just leave it off.

Regards homorganics, I hear the word "sing" and "finger" as being spoken by most everyone as having long e ~ee rather than short i ~i (as dictionaries prescribe).  This makes homorganic sense because the ~ee is closer to the velar ~n than ~i is.  It's homorganic.  Basically this is what's happening.  It's ~seeng rather than ~sing.

Tom Zurinskas, USA - CT20, TN3, NJ33, FL5+

> Date: Mon, 23 Mar 2009 22:25:08 -0400
> From: hfwstahlke at GMAIL.COM
> Subject: Re: the three "n" s
> ---------------------- Information from the mail header -----------------------
> Sender: American Dialect Society
> Poster: Herb Stahlke
> Subject: Re: the three "n" s
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> I think you're talking about the letter , not the phoneme /n/.
> Certainly before a consonant the nasal is homorganic to that
> consonant, which is what you're pointing out below. However, there's
> a little more involved. The tongue forms the same sort of "dam" in
> /t, ch, k, d, j, g/. The reason the airstream passes through the nose
> with /m, n, ng/ is that the velum is lowered, opening the passage
> through the nose, a separate gesture from what the tongue is doing.
> While you're right, as I just noted, that there is no phonemic
> contrast in nasals before a consonant, you could just as well include
> /m/ here, even thought it's represented orthographically by a
> different letter, . The priniciple is the same. The nasal is
> homorganic to a following consonant, in this case /p/ as in "lamp."
> You insist that there is an actually pronounced /g/ after the nasal in
> "sing," a fact that many of us have disputed and that Paul give some
> good dialect examples of below. Would you also say that there is a
> final /b/ in "lamb" or "comb"? Would these be different from "lam" or
> "jamb"? Both /b/ and /g/ got lost from speech in most dialects
> several hundred years ago.
> Herb
> On Mon, Mar 23, 2009 at 2:35 PM, Tom Zurinskas wrote:
>> ---------------------- Information from the mail header -----------------------
>> Sender: American Dialect Society
>> Poster: Tom Zurinskas
>> Subject: the three "n" s
>> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
>> I'd say there are 3 ways of say the sound "n", the most often spoken sound of USA English. For each, the tongue forms a dam so air is routed through the nose to make the "n" sound, but tongue placement differs, as per example in these three words; winter, finger, and danger.
>> 1. the front n - Winter - (tongue tip contacts top gums)
>> 2. the back n - Finger - (back of tongue contacts the velum)
>> 3. the middle n - Danger - (whole tongue rises to palate)
>> These "n"s are not noticably different in sound, and are allophones of each other.
>> Tom Zurinskas, USA - CT20, TN3, NJ33, FL5+
>> see
>> ----------------------------------------
>>> Date: Mon, 23 Mar 2009 10:35:36 -0700
>>> From: zwicky at STANFORD.EDU
>>> Subject: act of show
>>> ---------------------- Information from the mail header -----------------------
>>> Sender: American Dialect Society
>>> Poster: Arnold Zwicky
>>> Subject: act of show
>>> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
>>> from the Palo Alto Daily News of 21 March 2009, "Palo Alto shooting
>>> suspect still at large", by Diana Samuels, p. 3:
>>> Police said Gil-Fernandez claimed affiliation with the Norteno street
>>> gang, though that claim may have been mostly an act of show in Palo
>>> Alto, where the Norteno gang doesn't have much of a presence.
>>> .....
>>> that's "an act of show" 'a show, display, pretense'. a few more cites:
>>> I remembered my fiancé’s first time to pay me a visit at home. I
>>> was listening to Metallica. At that time, he thought I was just
>>> playing it to impress him. Later as we knew each other better, he
>>> realized that it was not an act of show but simply my choice of music.
>>> Gabby,Lynette,Bree,Susan and Eddie are all part of a clan that has
>>> secrets lies and webs of drama they all live in such a perfect area
>>> yet knowing all the perfection is just an act of show!!!
>>> Col. Gianfranco Cavallo of the Carabinieri paramilitary police said
>>> the bomb appeared to be an "act of show" rather than an attack planned
>>> to make victims.
>>> Actually it was our state governor, a female democrat (Ks) that
>>> ordered them sent! I am sure that it was more of an act of show than
>>> anything else.
>>> there are also hits for "act of show-off"
>>> do you think if I show up with my guitar it won't be weired? won't
>>> people think of it as an act of show off?
>>> [Yahoo! Indonesia]
>>> Again, McLeod depicts Ganda Singh as a shallow person of
>>> pretentious nature whose ego was inflated by the mere receipt of a
>>> book from McLeod and as an act of show-off, he carried it round under
>>> his arm, with the title prominently displayed for all to see.
>>> They dabble in esoteric themes like mysticism, sexual freedom,
>>> death, the after-life and such things, as an act of show off.
>>> unlike the "act of show" examples, these seem to be from various asian
>>> varieties of english.
>>> arnold
>>> ------------------------------------------------------------
>>> The American Dialect Society -
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