[Lingtyp] Inherently toneless morphemes in tone languages
RatanonJ at outlook.com
Tue Aug 24 12:39:29 UTC 2021
Is anyone familiar with tone languages which are analyzed to have "toneless" morphemes, i.e. not specified for tone in the underlying representation?
For example, some final particles in Thai have been analyzed to be inherently toneless, exhibiting their surface pitch contour only due to their linkage to intonational-phrase-final boundary tones.
(1) rāw cʰɔ̂ɔp tàw kʰa-L%
1SG like turtle FP
'I like turtles.' (/kʰa/ = formal, female speaking)
(2) nâarák máj kʰa-H%
cute FP FP
'Aren't they cute?' (/máj/ = neutral interrogative; /kʰa/ = formal, female speaking)
Traditionally, /kʰá/ and /kʰâ~kʰà/ would be treated as fully specified for tone and distinct from each other. So far, I have encountered somewhat similar accounts (of certain morphemes, particularly final particles, which are said to be tonally unspecified) in Mandarin and Cantonese.
Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thank you in advance!
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