On 25/02/2018 14:42, Alex Fink wrote:
> On Sat, 24 Feb 2018 19:34:25 +0000, Raymond Brown 
> <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>> On 24/02/2018 17:44, Aidan Aannestad wrote: [snip]
>>> This, I think, is the key question regarding whether or not 
>>> Britainese gains /θ/. Whole phonemes tend to be loaned only in 
>>> fairly close contact situations, though the possibility of 
>>> creating a /θ/-/ð/ opposition might ease the loaning a bit. If 
>>> contact between Britainese and the Germanic people in Britain 
>>> doesn't involve a degree of widespread bilingualism, and 
>>> especially since British Germanic would have lower prestige 
>>> attached to it than Britainese, I doubt we'd see a whole phoneme
>>>  loaned across. It's much more likely, IMO, that we'd see the 
>>> same as what happened in French, namely, realising Germanic /θ/ 
>>> as /t/
>> Thank you, Aidan, very fair points.
> I have to interject -- this argument goes for /w/ and /h/ exactly as
>  well as it goes for /θ/!

Yes it does, I guess.

> Ray has pointed to Walloon and Picard to justify the retention of
> /w/ and /h/, and this evinces that their speakers were in fact close 
> enough to the Germanic speakers to borrow whole phonemes.

It wasn't just Picard & Walloon; it's just those have managed to hold
onto these sounds against the encroachment of French. [w] was there at
one tome in all French dialects norths of the Joret line, which included
most of Normandy.  That is why, e.g. we inherited _warranty_ from
Norman French and _guarantee_ from French south of the Joret line.

[h], as I've remarked many times,  appears to have remained in French
till the 15th century.

> Given that there was no [θ] in continental Germanic, they can give
> us no evidence on this point.  If there was /θ/ to borrow, though,
> what would have made it intrinsically less borrowable than /w/ and
> /h/?

Good question.

> No, the suggestion of e.g. And has been that /θ ð/, together with /h/
> should be lost *later*.  And his argument is, to attempt to 
> summarise, that loss of these sounds is frequent,

But if, *having established these sounds*, should Britainese lose them
any more than English has in OTL?  As I've pointed out /θ ð/ have
survived in Greek for more than one and a half millennia.

> and that as Britainese reaches and passes its first millennium as an 
> independent language Romance trends become less and less good guides 
> to its phonological development,

It has _not_ been looking towards other Romance languages that I have
argued for the maintenance of these sounds!  It is towards what speakers
of the languages of southern Britain in OTL have done once they
inherited these sounds: they kept them.

> Independently of the present thorny question I agree with this 
> broader criticism, that eventually Britainese *would* show some 
> developments that are entirely uninferrable from neighbours and thus
>  irrecoverable with Ray's modus operandi of examining what the 
> neighbours were doing.  The longer one tries to project out 
> Britainese with Ray's methods, the more it would err on the side of 
> too great conservatism.

What? But AIUI the criticism I have getting is that from a Romance point
of view I'm not being conservative with regard to /θ ð/ and /w/.  It
seems I can't win either way.   :(

> I don't think that a millennium and a half is long enough that this 
> undermines the project, but I do think that actual post-1500 
> Britainese, if we got out our pocket Earth and ran the experiment, 
> would have a few little features that no-one at all could foresee.

I've already acknowledged that the further one gets away from 'early
Britainese' the more one has less guidance from the "control languages"
of OTL.  The trouble with "ittle features that no-one at all
could foresee" is that none of us can foresee them.  :)

But there could be some features yet which will surprise me.   :)

I have decided firmly that [w] and [h] are staying.  I'm mulling over
responses about [θ] and [ð] that I'm receiving both on list and off list.