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On Sunday, November 7, 2004, at 08:50 , Andreas Johansson wrote:

> Quoting Ray Brown <[log in to unmask]>:
>
>> Thinks: if there's a retroflex lateral approximant - and there is in some
>> Indic languages - why ain't there any retroflex lateral fricatives? (Umm
>> -
>> a bit difficult to pronounce).
[snip]

> I can produce sublaminal lateral fricative too, and I do not find it any
> harder
> than your run-of-the-mill apico-alveolar lateral fric, so I would not be
> surprised if it's used somewhere.

I guess I could acquire it - it's just that I am used to [K].

>  The lack of an IPA sign need only mean that
> no language distinguishes phonologically from apico-alveolars, and since,
>  I
> believe, both retroflex-alveolar distinctions and lateral fricatives are
> relatively rare typologically, the lack of such languages might simply be
> due
> to combinatorics.

Yes - but I thought IPA was meant to provide symbols for _phonetic_
representation as well as phonological representation.

Obviously the blacked-out cells in the IPA place of articulation/manner of
articulation matrix mean that the sound that would in theory fill the cell
is in fact physically impossible. I have assumed that the empty cells
which are not blacked-out were sounds that were theoretically possible but
not attested in any known natlang. Is this assumption mistaken?

Ray
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Anything is possible in the fabulous Celtic twilight,
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as of the reason."      [JRRT, "English and Welsh" ]