14th International Congress of Phonetic Sciences (ICPhS-14)
San Francisco, CA, USA
Systematically manipulated read declarative sentences in European Portuguese reveal that onsets and offsets of intonation contour toplines and baselines are independent of utterance length. Consequently, contour slopes vary with length: longer utterances have significantly less steep negative slopes than do shorter ones. The initial rise from baseline to topline is associated with the first stressed syllable and the final fall from topline to baseline with the last stressed syllable in the utterance. Thus, intonation in mono-phrasal declarative utterances can be modelled in the simplest possible way: with one high and one low target, associated with the first and last stressed syllable in the utterance, respectively. Internal phrase boundaries are commonly characterized by a fall to the baseline a low target associated with the last stressed syllable in the phrase, succeeded by a return to the topline a high target associated with the next stressed syllable.
Bibliographic reference. Grønnum, Nina / Viana, Maria do Céu (1999): "Aspects of European Portuguese intonation", In ICPhS-14, 1997-2000.