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From: "Jake X" <[log in to unmask]>
> I recently reread a post of several weeks ago about whether [T] and [D] are
> cophonemic in English.  I found a minimal pair: teeth [tiT] and to teethe
> [tiD] (as in what a baby does when s/he grows the first teeth).  Does that
> prove anything?

No, actually.  I understand that, strictly speaking, a minimal pair can't be
used with a phoneme on a morpheme boundary (and "teethe" is just "teeth" with a
[+voice] morpheme that makes verbs--the same you find in "house" n. vs. "to
house" v.)

And that's kinda what makes it difficult, as most normal [D] *are* sitting on
morpheme boundaries, if not actually morphemes themselves (like [D] deictic and
[D] 2nd person archaic familiar).

I still like "arrhythmology" vs. "arithmology" ([D] vs. [T], "study of abnormal
heartbeat" and "study of numbers").

> Does anyone here speak a dialect which has both of those
> pronbounced the same?

Someone [foreign, whose post I can't find at the moment] mentioned that the
difference between their /f/ and /v/ was mostly fortis/lenis rather than
voiced/unvoiced.

Last night I developed a hypothesis that Australian does the same thing with /T/
and /D/, which my brain came up with as an explanation for why at least two or
three Australians on this list had trouble finding the 'voicing' in /D/.  Does
that sound plausible?

Anyway, I reeeeeally think English interdentals belong in the FAQ.

    *Muke!
--
http://www.frath.net/