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Geoff Eddy wrote:
> > All of which suggests to me a three-vowel system in reduced
> > syllables: [@] written A EA AI E; [E] written EI, [I] written
> > I IO. What do you think?
> It's possible, but not very likely given that this assumes that all back
> vowels fall together, while front vowels remain distinct.
Good point. Well, EI I IO could fall together as a high central
vowel like i^/a^ (pronounced the same) in Romanian.
> At present I'm considering a vowel system with
> seven vowels, five short vowels and two diphthongs in stressed
> syllables, and six vowels in unstressed syllables.
Sounds awful complicated.
> I remember sending Sally Caves a pronunciation table of Irish spellings
> some time ago; I assembled it from several sources. I'll send you a
> copy, if you want...
> Finally, one of my main problems with Breathanach has always been
> knowing how much I'm allowed to make up. There are several sound-changes
> (such as final -nt > /nn/) which could have happened but don't reflect
> what actually happened in Irish; however, I don't think that evolving
> Irish from Classical or Vulgar Latin instead of Proto-Celtic would be
> particularly rewarding. Do you happen to know how much of Brithenig is
> invention on Andrew Smith's part, rather than speculation?
Asking Andrew would probably be more fruitful, but I know there is a large
non-systematic element in it. E.g. I invented the word "cafurn" for
"cave" before I understood Brithenig sound changes; he told me it
should be "cawern", and I retorted that this particular word had been
reshaped under English influence --- and he bought it! "Cafurn" it is.
John Cowan http://www.ccil.org/~cowan firstname.lastname@example.org
You tollerday donsk? N. You tolkatiff scowegian? Nn.
You spigotty anglease? Nnn. You phonio saxo? Nnnn.
Clear all so! 'Tis a Jute.... (Finnegans Wake 16.5)