Welcome, Kate. But forget the Insular Celtic languages as far as consonant 
harmony is concerned - they are red herrings in this thread   :)

On Monday, July 18, 2005, at 04:20 , Joe wrote:

> Andrew Patterson wrote:
>> Welsh, soft and hard mutation. Don't ask me to explain, though I don't 
>> speak it 'cos I'm from South Wales.
> Actually, Welsh doesn't have a hard mutation.  It has a soft, an 
> aspirated, and a nasal mutation.


> And I'm not sure you could call it consonant harmony, since it's 
> grammatical, not phonetic.

True - it is not consonant harmony by any stretch of the imagination.

On Monday, July 18, 2005, at 04:14 , Keith Gaughan wrote:
> I don't think mutation or lenition in any of the Insular Celtic
> languages could be considered consonant harmony as they occur on
> word/morpheme boundaries and are triggered by consonants

or final _vowels_ in the case of lenition/ soft mutation.

> that used to exist but have since been lost.

Quite so - and even when the sounds were there, it was a matter of 
_assimilation_, i.e. one sound affecting its neighbor. This is not 
consonant harmony as Kate, Henrik & Wayne - correctly IMO - understood the 

And in the modern languages it is conditioned _grammatically_, as Joe says,
  and has nothing to do with phonological environment, whether consonants 
or vowels.

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