15th International Congress of Phonetic Sciences (ICPhS-15)
Tokyo Japanese (TJ) and the Northern Bizkaian dialects of Basque (NBB) are known to have similar pitch accent systems, and in both languages the focus status of words affects the prosodic phrasing. A cross-linguistic experiment was conducted to investigate whether the effect of tonal proximity on the phonetic realization of lexical pitch accent is conditioned by focus-related prosodic phrasing in TJ and Bermeo Basque (one NBB dialect). Acoustic analyses of the F0 traces of the experimental sentences revealed that a small inter-accent-interval (IAI) had two effects: It raised the valley between the two F0 peaks and pushed the second F0 peak rightwards. Although these effects were persistent regardless of the focus status of words in both languages, when the word's pitch range was reset in BB, IAI did not seem to affect the size of the accentual F0 rise. These results indicate that focus-related prosodic phrasing constrains the pitch movement between sequential accents, but it does not completely restrict the effect of tonal proximity on the realization of lexical pitch accents.
Bibliographic reference. Ito, Kiwako (2003): "The focus-independent effect of tonal proximity on the realization of lexical pitch accent in Tokyo Japanese and Bermeo Basque", In ICPhS-15, 2285-2288.