15th International Congress of Phonetic Sciences (ICPhS-15)

Barcelona, Spain
August 3-9, 2003


Secondary Stress in Brazilian Portuguese Perceptual and Acoustical Evidence

João António de Moraes

Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Phonological studies on Brazilian Portuguese (BP) consider that besides the main lexical stress, there is a secondary stress (SS), which would fall on each even prestressed syllable, counted from right to left, starting from the primary stressed one, characterizing a strong/week alternation (trochaic feet). Based on perceptual tests with read speech material, it was showed that a SS was perceived regularly in words with more than one prestressed syllable, but its location admits variation, with two basic patterns: either the SS following the binary alternation rule, or the SS falling on the initial syllable, potentially creating a ternary foot. Acoustical analysis showed that there is no stable correlate of SS: it can be either fundamental frequency, or a combination of duration and loudness.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Moraes, João António de (2003): "Secondary stress in Brazilian Portuguese perceptual and acoustical evidence", In ICPhS-15, 2063-2066.