On 10/04/09 15:07:28, caeruleancentaur wrote: > --- In [log in to unmask], R A Brown <ray@...> wrote: > > > > In _catsup_ we have two syllables: cat-sup /k&t.sVp/. The /t/ is > the > > > coda of the first syllable and /s/ is the onset of the second. > > > I find it interesting that catsup is derived, through the Malay > 'kechap' (/kE.tSap ?), from the Amoy Chinese 'koe' + 'tsiap'. What > was originally an initial affricate has become for us coda and onset. > > But 'ketchup' is divided differently, /kEtS.Vp/. This syllabification has caused some disagreement amongst contributors. The argument here is that because /tS/ is glottalised, it must be in the previous syllable. The counterargument is basically the onset maximisation principle, that as many segments should be in an onset as the language will support. Both make some degree of sense, although I think the OMP should win the day: Renown English phonetician John C. Wells argues that intervocallic /tr/  must be a coda because it is glottalised, i.e. a word like "Patrick" has to be syllabified as /p&tr.Ik/ because it is [p_h&tr)_?Ik] . This leads us to the I think unhappy conclusion that /tr/ can be an onset and it can be a coda, but only if a vowel follows. Other phonologists have claimed that in non-rhotic English varieties, /r/ is likewise permitted in the onset, but can only be in the coda if a vowel follows, so that "arid" (say) is [&r.@d]. I forget the exact justification for this, but it's at least partly to let the linking [r] go in the coda. I personally think this is a funny desire, given that the entire reason for a linking consonant is to make sure every syllable has an onset! (if no word was before, the onset is of course [?]; if a word ending in a consonant was before, the onset the consonant that was before --- this is especially clear in varieties like RP which alternate between dark  in codas and light [l] in onsets; a word like "little" ends in  unless a vowel-initial word follows, when it's [l]). : in this post, for simplicity, I'll be using [r] to refer to the English approximant rather than the trill, even in the narrowest transcriptions. : for Wells, /tr/ is phonetically an affricative, i.e. the release is directly into the [r]. I prefer to say it's [tS)r], which nicely gets around Wells's problem. The difference between our descriptions might be due to differences between RP and AusE. : Your pedantry/unreasonable desire for unambiguity has now got you stuck in an infinite loop, because I was referring to a voiced velarised alveolar lateral approximate, IPA [ɫ], X-Sampa/CXS . You'll get out of it just as soon as you use common sense! But you already know that if you've got this far. Anyway, as Ray Brown and Paul Kershaw have so rightly observed, fretting about syllabification is probably a waste of time. I think there's no reason not to assume a single utterance of a single word couldn't have more than one syllabification in the utterer's head. > BTW, "An Etymological Dictionary of Modern English" says that > 'catsup' > is incorrect. Yeah, but so's "ketchup". The stuff's called "(tomato) sauce". Or, on a dog's eye (meat pie), "dead horse". When I worked in the restaurant in Ikea there were lots of kids who either didn't know what "ketchup" meant or clearly took pride in showing off their knowledge to their siblings/friends. (Yeah, the reason I replied to this post was to make sure you know I'm Australian ;) -- Tristan.