14th International Congress of Phonetic Sciences (ICPhS-14)

San Francisco, CA, USA
August 1-7, 1999


On the Presence of /λ/ in the Huron Language

Benoît Jacques, Michel Gros-Louis

Université du Québec à Montréal, Canada

The aim of this paper is the study of a particular point of the Huron, a language of the Iroquoyan family spoken in the village of Wendake (or Lorette), near Quebec City, Canada, and in the State of Oklahoma. In 1904, it was noted that the Huron- Wendats of Lorette had introduced the letter ‘L’ in their proper names at the places where the comma was found of the old documents. Now, in the Huron-Wyandot spoken in Oklahoma, the same comma has been replaced by the letter ‘Y’, pronounced /j/ by the actual speakers. So, the same sound seems to have evolved differently in the two communities. This led us to make the hypothesis that the unknown sound that gave origin to the two actual phonetic realizations was a palatal lateral, a hypothesis that our findings tend to confirm.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Jacques, Benoît / Gros-Louis, Michel (1999): "On the presence of /λ/ in the Huron language", In ICPhS-14, 361-364.