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On Fri, 3 Oct 2003 06:16:40 +0100, Ray Brown <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>
>On Thursday, October 2, 2003, at 06:42 , Roger Mills wrote:
>
>[snip]
>> Some Dravidian languages (and I think Proto Drav.) have 3, dental,
>> alveolar
>> and retroflex.
>
>Don't know about Proto Drav, but certainly some (most?) modern Dravidian
>langs have these three.
>
>> Malayo-Polynesian languages allow the reconstruction of at least two,
>> one symbolized *r (presumably dental/alv.), the other *R (presumably a
>> velar).
>
>Yes, having two rhotics is not so uncommon.  Three is less common, but
>certainly well enough attested.  If I've remembered correctly about Irish
>Gaelic, then we have at least one example of four, and I don't imagine it
>would be unique.
>
>So if a conlang is to "out-cool" natlangs on rhotics, it's got to have
>more than a paltry three.
>
>You could have, I guess, at least eight  :-)
>              dental  alveolar  retroflex  uvular
>voiced         1        2         3         4
>
>unvoiced/      5        6          7        8
>aspirated
>
>Can't think of any neat way of representing them in the Roman alphabet.

Rubaga can have up to 7 phonetically (depending on dialect/accent):

              alveolar  retroflex  uvular
voiced           2         3         4
flap                  9
unvoiced/        6         7         8
aspirated

{R} is used for 2, 3, and 9; 9 occurs (if it occurs!) only in onset
clusters. 6 and 7 are written {tr} and come from [T] + r. The alveolars and
retroflexes are complementary with 2 or 6 before written front vowels and 3
or 7 otherwise. I don't make any consistent distinction between alveolar or
retroflex for the flap, so I'm counting it only once.
4 is written {g} and 8 is written {c}; both of these can be fricatives.
The name of the language itself uses 2 rhotics.

Jeff

>Ray
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