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

Barcelona, Spain
August 3-9, 2003

The Naturalness of Recurrent Sound Changes in English

Lukasz Mokrzycki

Adam Mickiewicz University, Poland

In this contribution an attempt is made to account, within the framework of Natural Phonology, for some differences in vocalic systems among three Early Middle English (EME) dialects in relation to ongoing changes in Modern English (ModE) vernaculars. The collected EME and ModE data will be scrutinised according to the fitting observations from, first, the model elaborated by Donegan (1985), and second, Dressler's (1980) semiotic approach for diachronic process phonology. These will, in turn, serve as a compatible means of explaining the surveyed dissimilarities of the EME vowel systems as well as the modifications in vocalic inventories of ModE dialects. Finally, the assumptions made for diachronic changes will reveal commensurate with those inferred from the ModE data, ascertaining the recurrence of similar sound changes in distant periods.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Mokrzycki, Lukasz (2003): "The naturalness of recurrent sound changes in English", In ICPhS-15, 2505-2508.