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Kristian Jensen wrote:

> You may be interested to know that there are actually languages
> with vowel height harmony. I seem to recall them being in Africa and
> Central America. The harmonic rules are something to the effect of
> having only high and low vowels in one set, and only mid vowels in
> another set.


There's a Turkic language -- Kirghiz? -- which has eight vowels and
both height and backness harmony, so that there can be at most
two different vowels in any word.  Furthermore, unlike most Turkic
vowel harmony systems it is "live" -- loanwords are adjusted to fit.

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