[Lingtyp] Query: syllable-reversing ludlings

Eric Campbell ecampbell at linguistics.ucsb.edu
Sun May 17 14:25:08 EDT 2020


Dear David,

The nchakui’ tsū’ ntīlú ‘speaking backwards’ play language of Zenzontepec
Chatino (Otomanguean) displays pattern (b) 123 > 231, and sheds light on
moraicity, the representation of tone, and other questions.

kutunu → tūnúku  ‘large crayfish’
kūnáɁa → náɁaku  ‘woman’
kʷilīʃí → lʲīʃíkʷi  ‘butterfly’
kilituɁ → lʲītʲúɁki  ‘navel of’
kʷitīɁjú → tʲīɁjúkʷi  ‘lightning


The language doesn’t have lexical stress, but the final syllable is the
most prominent syllable of the phonological word, meaning, in this case, it
(i) displays the most phonological contrasts (contrastive V nasality, V
length, coda glottal stop) and (ii) tends to be the syllable with greatest
duration. This was just published open access last month in PD&A:
https://phondata.org/index.php/pda/issue/view/5

Best regards,

Eric Campbell

On Sun, May 17, 2020 at 10:27 AM Hiroto Uchihara <uchihara at buffalo.edu>
wrote:

> Dear David,
>
> According to the Ito et al. (1996), fu.men 'score' > men.fu, mo.dan
> 'modern' > dan.mo, ya.súi 'cheap' > sui.ya; here, we could say that the
> syllables are reversed or the same 123 > 231 reversing is being applied.
> With longer words, they report ba.tsu.gun 'fantastic' > gun.ba.tsu,
> ki.chí.gai 'crazy' > gai.ki.chi, koo.híi 'coffee' > hii.koo so maybe 123..X
> > (X-1)(X)123.. with moraic counting is more general.  They also report
> cases of 123 > 321 (with moraic counting), such as pán.tsu ~ pan.tsu
> 'pants' > tsun.pa, tái.pu 'type' > pui.ta.
>
> Hiroto
>
> El dom., 17 de may. de 2020 a la(s) 11:59, David Gil (gil at shh.mpg.de)
> escribió:
>
>> Dear Hiroto,
>>
>> Thanks, this is very helpful. I'm curious about one thing though.  In the
>> examples that you cited, the mora happens to correspond to a syllable, so
>> it is not possible to tell whether it is moras or syllables that are being
>> reversed.  But there are lots of other words where the mora is less than a
>> complete syllable — what happens in such words?
>>
>> Best wishes,
>>
>> David
>>
>>
>> On 17/05/2020 19:35, Hiroto Uchihara wrote:
>>
>> Dear David,
>>
>> Japanese Zuu-jaa go does this, although I don't use this ludling so I
>> don't have an intuition (I believe it became obsolete in the 90's). It
>> looks like tri-moraic words follow the pattern 123 > 231 (Ito, Kitagawa &
>> Mester 1996), such as pi.a.no 'piano' > ya.no.pi, shi.ka.ke 'trick' >
>> ka.ke.shi, ma.zú.i 'tastes bad' > zu.i.ma, ku.su.ri 'drug' > su.ri.ku.
>> It appears that the location of the pitch accent doesn't matter: 'tastes
>> bad' have accent on the penultimate mora while others are unaccented.
>>
>> I hope this helps.
>>
>> Reference:
>> Ito, Junko, Yoshihisa Kitagawa & Armin Mester. 1996. Prosodic
>> faithfulness and correspondence: evidence from Japanese argot. Journal of
>> East Asian Linguistics 5.3: 217-294.
>>
>> Hiroto
>>
>> El dom., 17 de may. de 2020 a la(s) 11:03, David Gil (gil at shh.mpg.de)
>> escribió:
>>
>>> Dear all,
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>> Ludlings (aka play languages or secret languages) are often constructed
>>> by reversing the order of syllables in a word.  Using numerals to
>>> denote syllables, 12 > 21.  But what happens when there are three (or
>>> more) syllables in the word?  For tri-syllabic words, the two most
>>> common outcomes are
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>> (a) 123 > 312
>>>
>>> (b) 123 > 231
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>> The Riau Indonesian ludling I have written about has the (a) pattern,
>>> eg. *bahasa > sabaha*. But a friend of mine in Papua has recently
>>> started writing to me in a ludling using the (b) pattern, e.g. *bahasa
>>> > hasaba*.  Which got me curious.  According to Wikipedia, the French
>>> ludling *verlan* may use either option, e.g. *cigarette* > *restiga* or
>>> *garetsi*.
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>> I would appreciate any information you might be able to provide with
>>> regard to syllable-reversing ludlings of this kind that you might be
>>> familiar with in other languages.  Specifically, I would like to know:
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>> (1) which pattern is followed in tri-syllabic words: (a), (b), or
>>> perhaps other?
>>>
>>> (2) what is the location of word-stress in the language?
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>> The motivation behind the second question is that I have a hunch that
>>> the difference between the ludlings in closely related Riau Indonesian and
>>> Papuan Malay might be due to their different stress patterns — a hypothesis
>>> that is easily tested by looking at a handful of other languages.
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>> Thanks,
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>> David
>>>
>>> --
>>> David Gil
>>>
>>> Senior Scientist (Associate)
>>> Department of Linguistic and Cultural Evolution
>>> Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History
>>> Kahlaische Strasse 10, 07745 Jena, Germany
>>>
>>> Email: gil at shh.mpg.de
>>> Mobile Phone (Israel): +972-556825895
>>> Mobile Phone (Indonesia): +62-81344082091
>>>
>>> _______________________________________________
>>> Lingtyp mailing list
>>> Lingtyp at listserv.linguistlist.org
>>> http://listserv.linguistlist.org/mailman/listinfo/lingtyp
>>>
>>
>>
>> --
>> Dr. Hiroto Uchihara
>> https://sites.google.com/view/hiroto-uchihara/home?authuser=0
>> Seminario de Lenguas Indígenas
>> Instituto de Investigaciones Filológicas
>> Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México
>> Circuito Mario de la Cueva
>> Ciudad Universitaria, 04510, Ciudad de México.
>> Tel. Seminario:(+52)-(55)-5622-7489
>> Office: (+52)-(55)-5622-7250, Ext. 49223
>>
>> --
>> David Gil
>>
>> Senior Scientist (Associate)
>> Department of Linguistic and Cultural Evolution
>> Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History
>> Kahlaische Strasse 10, 07745 Jena, Germany
>>
>> Email: gil at shh.mpg.de
>> Mobile Phone (Israel): +972-556825895
>> Mobile Phone (Indonesia): +62-81344082091
>>
>>
>
> --
> Dr. Hiroto Uchihara
> https://sites.google.com/view/hiroto-uchihara/home?authuser=0
> Seminario de Lenguas Indígenas
> Instituto de Investigaciones Filológicas
> Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México
> Circuito Mario de la Cueva
> Ciudad Universitaria, 04510, Ciudad de México.
> Tel. Seminario:(+52)-(55)-5622-7489
> Office: (+52)-(55)-5622-7250, Ext. 49223
> _______________________________________________
> Lingtyp mailing list
> Lingtyp at listserv.linguistlist.org
> http://listserv.linguistlist.org/mailman/listinfo/lingtyp
>


-- 
*Eric W. Campbell*

Assistant Professor of Linguistics
Director of Undergraduate Studies, Linguistics
Faculty in Residence, San Joaquin and Sierra Madre Villages
Academic Council, American Indian and Indigenous Collective

Department of Linguistics
South Hall 3432
University of California, Santa Barbara
Santa Barbara, CA 93106-3100

Zoom Room:
https://ucsb.zoom.us/my/eric.campbell
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