Historical Linguistics

Topics: International Phonetic Alphabet, Phonetics, Phonology Pages: 4 (723 words) Published: December 27, 2012
Phonetic Symbols and Conventions

The conventions for presenting examples used in this book are widely utilised in linguistics, but it will be helpful to state the more important of these for any readers unfamiliar with them. Most linguistic examples are given in italics and their glosses (translations into English) are presented in single quotes, for example: Finnish rengas 'ring'. In instances where it is necessary to make the phonetic form clear, the phonetic representation is presented in square brackets ([]), for example: [SIl]] 'sing'. In instances where it is relevant to specify the phonemic representation, this is given between slashed lines (II), for example: German Bett Ibetl 'bed'. Double slashes (II II) are used for dictionary forms (or underlying representations ). The convention of angled brackets « » is utilised to show that the form is given just as it was written in the original source from which it is cited, for example: German 'bed'. A hyphen ( - ) is used to show the separation of morphemes in a word, as injump-ing for Englishjumping. Occasionally, a plus sign (+) is used to show a morpheme boundary in a context where it is necessary to show more explicitly the pieces which some example is composed of. It is standard practice to use an asterisk (*) to represent reconstructed forms, as for example Proto-Indo-European *p;;)ter 'father'. A convention in this text (not a general one in linguistics) is the use of )C to represent ungrammatical or non-occurring forms. Outside of historical linguistics, an asterisk is used to indicate ungrammatical and non-occurring forms; but since in historical linguistic contexts an asterisk signals reconstructed forms, to avoid confusion )C is used for ungrammatical or non-occurring forms. xvii

Phonetic Symbols and Conventions

It is standard in historical linguistics to use> to mean 'changed into', for example: *p > b (original p changed into b), and < to mean 'changed from, comes from', for example: b
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