Leo A. Connolly
connolly at memphis.edu
Sat Mar 3 07:07:30 UTC 2001
"David L. White" wrote:
>> Not that it matters here, but wasn't the OE genitive form _hwæs_
>> (_hwaes_, if your machine can't handle the digraph), which points to PIE
>> _o_ rather than _e_?
>> Leo Connolly
> Yes, the OE form is "hwaes", but I was (over-)generalizing to the
> rest of Germanic, where /e/ seems to have been the rule. The usual view is
> that OE /ae/ got there simply by a difference of opinion about whether to
> use /o/ or /e/ in IE.
Certainly possible, since other genitives show both vowels.
> Another possibility that occurs to me is that there
> might have been a change of unstressed /e/ after /w/ (voiced or voiceless)
> to /ae/, but I do not know if this checks.
I don't think so. Why would it have been unstressed in an interrogative
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