On Thu, 14 Oct 2004 17:14:27 +0200, Andreas Johansson <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

>Quoting "Adrian Morgan (aka Flesh-eating Dragon)" <[log in to unmask]>:
>> Alternatively, I could do away with /h/ (but how many natural
>> languages don't have /h/ ?)
>French, Greek and Russian come to mind; they don't have [h] at all. And then
>you've got langs like Spanish, where [h] is found, but can very reasonably be
>analyzed as allophones of /s/ and /x/, ridding us of an /h/ _phoneme_.
>Moreover, some 'lects of Spanish lack [h] entirely.

I'd say most lack it, but some have it as allophones (of syllable-final /s/
or of /x/). But I guess the same is true of Russian; I remember a girl that
told me that the Cyrillic alphabet had a letter for [h], and I assume she
meant |x|.

Italian also lacks it, and to my knowledge even certain dialects of English.
I once heard an Italian girl speaking German, and she tried so hard to
produce [h] that she ended up with [?]. In the places where there can be a
[?], however, she had a [h]! So she had basically switched [h] and [?]
(neither occur in Italian).

j. 'mach' wust