Structure in language: sounds. The Language Detective Villiers Park 9-13 July 2007. Sounds and spellings. What different sounds are represented by the letter shape <f> in English? [f] in for ; [v] in of What letter(s) can be used to represent the sound /f/ in English?
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The Language Detective
9-13 July 2007
What different sounds are represented by the letter shape <f> in English?
[f] in for; [v] in of
What letter(s) can be used to represent the sound /f/ in English?
<f> in for; <ff> in off; <gh> in cough; <ph> in phone
How would you spell the following nonsense words?
In OE, [f] and [v] were allophones of the same phoneme
[What’s an allophone? What’s a phoneme?]
OE feoll ‘fell’; ofer ‘over’; lufian ‘to love’; cræft ‘skill’; wulf ‘wolf’; wulfas ‘wolves’
[f] and [v] differ only in terms of voicing
Other voiceless/voiced pairs: [s] and [z]; [p] and [b]; [t] and [d]
actif 'active‘; ffigur 'figure‘; ffocws 'focus‘; lefel 'level‘; proffesiwn 'profession‘; tancer 'tanker‘; cic 'kick'
What observations can you make about the relationship between sound and spelling of certain consonants in Welsh, based on the data above?
What are the phoneme correspondences for these Welsh letters?
Is there a general difference between the spelling of borrowed words in Welsh and in English?
Which language is likely to have more regular correspondences? Why do you think that might be?
Guess how the following Welsh names are pronounced (NB: <ch> = /x/) and transcribe them:
no Welsh monoglot speakers were able to hold public office
What is the rule that operates to determine whether or not a or an is selected as the indefinite article in English?
Data set: pear, apple, orange, school, youth, uncle, hotel, university, yard, rope, almond, euro
Those that take a:
Pear, school, youth, university, yard, rope, euro
Those that take an: apple, orange, uncle, almond.
Where does hotel fit?
Rule is: select a before a (spoken) consonant; select an before a (spoken) vowel
OE had no indefinite articles as such (sense of indefinites was expressed by just a bare noun); articles arose from OE an ‘one’
an cyning = one (unique) king
OE nædre ‘snake’ > ModE ‘adder’
OE ekename ‘also-name’ > ModE ‘nickname’
Do you have an ‘r’ sound in the following words; if so, where in the word does the sound appear?
Hope, rope, poor, farm, cat, roar, nurse, square, north, force, sport, short, arrive
Why might the following words look odd to monolingual English speakers?