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I strongly disagree with the notion that syllables aren’t phonetically real! See the following paper: https://lirias.kuleuven.be/bitstream/123456789/389158/1/PMertens_1987_Edinburgh.pdf.

There is even a Praat extension based on this, for automatically detecting syllables and intonation contours: http://bach.arts.kuleuven.be/pmertens/prosogram/.

Siva

> On 8 Aug 2015, at 9:39 pm, David McCann <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> 
> On Sat, 8 Aug 2015 15:56:49 +0100
> R A Brown <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> 
>> I give up.  If syllables and their boundaries don't exist in 
>> the speech stream, then there can be no syllabic codas to 
>> shorted vowels or do anything else them.
>> 
> A syllable is like a phoneme: it's a component of language, not a
> physical object. As Ladefoged and Maddieson wrote, "There is no
> phonetic parameter that can be used to define syllabicity in
> articulatory or physiological terms."
> 
> Obviously syllables are real, just like phonemes, but they are what in
> philosophy would be called intelligibles. Their reality is obviously
> demonstrated by the fact that native speakers can (with the occasional
> uncertainty) identify them: hence syllabic scripts. They also affect
> syllable-edge processes: in Dutch a syllable-final stop cannot be
> voiced.