Mark J. Reed wrote: > On Thu, Jan 29, 2004 at 07:26:56PM -0500, Roger Mills wrote: > > s+f/v only in non-native; T/D can't cluster at all) > > Am I missing some context here, or do you consider "sphere" etc. not to be > native English words? > sphere, sphinx and related sphincter, Sfax-- certainly of non-native origin, though I'm sure they've been around a while. Sometimes it's hard to draw the line. If there are any Greek words with initial sigma-theta, then I suppose we could pronounce them too /sT.../. We also manage "svelte" and "Sviatoslav", but /sD.../ seems not to occur. These may be gaps in the system that _can_ be filled, unlike initial Stop+nasal, which is flat out forbidden. There are always going to be a handful of exceptions. Consider Spanish reloj -- the _only_ instance of final [x]; or Germ. [tS], disallowed initially (except in loans) but not medially/finally; or [tS] anywhere in French, except in loans.