Vowel Correspondences

R. Rankin rankin at ku.edu
Mon Nov 29 23:28:29 UTC 2004

At least a few of the uN/aN correspondences signal loanwords.  The one that
comes to mind is 'squash/pumpkin' with LA wagmu; DA wamna, both from Algonquian
either directly or indirectly.

> In some cases Kaw may have u-umlaut for *i.

These are cases of genuine Umlaut, with *i > u" only if another u" is the next
vowel to the right.  Shouldn't happen otherwise except for that peculiar Kaw
benefactive in /gu"/.  I assume the mechanism in the latter case is analogical
rather than phonological though.

> There are some cases of *e, *o > i, u in the Crow-Hidatsa and Southeastern
> peripheries, too, I guess.

Yeah, I'm still not entirely clear on just what the correspondences and changes
are with Crow and Hidatsa vs. the rest.  Wes had it linked to vowel length.

In the SE there are problems created by notation and also by the Southeastern
areal feature by which some /i/ may be phonetically [e].  Mary Haas's paper on
"The Last Words of Biloxi" points out that [e] is an allophone of the phoneme
/i/, whereas the actual phoneme /e/ is always [epsilon].  Unfortunately a lot of
Siouanists have tended to write [e] and [epsilon] with the same phoneme symbol.
Ofo appears to share this trait, and I have a short discussion of it in that
little Ofo pamphlet I prepared for the Siouan Conf. a couple of years back in
Rapid City.


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