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TUNDRIAN LANGUAGE / LINGUA TUNDRIANA

TUNDRIAN ACCENTUATION

CONTENTS


Except for a few words that are called unstressed, all words in Tundrian have a stressed syllable, i.e. one that receives more emphasis in the spoken language than other syllables do.

UNSTRESSED WORDS

The following words are usually unstressed:

a 'to, at', al 'to the', au 'or', cel (+ cela, cele etc.) 'this/these [adj.]', ci '(to) here', ço 'this [pn.]', con 'with', 'from', de 'of', del 'of the', doi 'you [formal]', don 'Sir', ê 'and', el 'the', en 'in', es 'some', est (+ esti, este etc.] 'that', ho 'it [impers.]', in 'from there, of it', jo 'I', la/lâ/las/le/li/lo/los 'the', lhis 'to them', lhi 'to him', me 'me', mi 'to me', (+ mîa, mêi etc.) 'my', ne 'not', ni 'neither', noi 'to us', non 'not', nos 'us', per 'by', por 'for', que 'that [conj.], what [pn.], than', quen 'whom [pn.]', qui 'who [rel.pn.]', se 'oneself, themselves [acc.]', si 'to oneself, to themselves', (+ sûa, sûi etc.) 'his, her, its', sur 'on', te 'you [acc.sing.]', ti 'to you [sing.]', tu 'you [sing.]', (+ tûa, tûi etc.) 'your [sing.]', vi '(to) there', voi 'to you [pl.]', vos 'you [acc.pl.]', xi 'if', 'under'.

Certain frequently used verbal forms may or may not be stressed in the sentence - in any case, their spelling does not change. The following forms are the most common with this variation:

The word un is normally stressed when it means 'one', and unstressed when it means 'a(n)'. It never carries an accent, however.

DEFAULT STRESS

The stressed syllable may never be more than three syllables from the end of the word. The three possible accentuation patterns are therefore:

Regular stress in words of more than one syllable is decided according to the following rules:

IRREGULAR STRESS

Words that are stressed differently from the default normally mark the irregularly stressed vowel (which may also be a diphthong or a digraph) with an accent. The patterns are:

There are three exceptions to these rules:

WHICH ACCENT?

If the irregular stress falls on the vowels spelt <a>, <e> or <o>, the choice of the accent depends on the pronunciation. The following table will show the form to be used (see Tundrian Phonetics for the meaning of the symbols):

PRON. SPELLING PRON. SPELLING
a á ɑ â
e é ɛ ê
o ó ɔ ô

Examples:

When the vowel is <i>, irregular stress is generally denoted by the acute accent (<í>), unless <i> is preceded or followed by a vowel, in which case it is spelled with the circumflex accent (<î>). Examples:

Exception: in the nominal derivative suffix -ía (and its plural forms -íe,  -ías) we always find the acute accent: abbatía 'abbey', pharmacía 'pharmacy'. But in carvîa 'caraway seed', convîa 'convoy', corrîa 'strap', desvîa 'detour', santorîa 'savory', tîa 'auntie', vîa 'street' and xîa 'wake' (of a ship), where the -îa is not suffixal, the circumflex is retained.

The vowel <u> (pronounced /y/) always carries the acute accent when it is stressed irregularly: devú 'he had to', únic 'unique'.

The vowel <y>, used for the phoneme /i/ in some words of Greek origin, can also show irregular stress through the use of the acute accent: cýstic 'cystic'; phýsica 'physics'.

Similarly, digraph vowels carry the acute accent on their first letter when they are stressed irregularly: cantái 'I sang'; cáustic 'caustic'; féicat 'liver'; séutim 'seventh'; cangaróu 'kangaroo'; devúi 'I had to'.

OTHER USES OF ACCENTS

Accents may be used for other purposes than to show irregular stress. Here are the most important such uses:

THE ACUTE ACCENT

THE CIRCUMFLEX ACCENT

THE TREMA

The trema is used over the vowels <e>, <i> and <u> when they are to be pronounced in cases where the unmarked vowel would be silent (or part of a digraph), or when they are to have syllabic value where the unmarked vowel would be a glide. Note that vowels with a trema are never stressed. Examples:

THE CEDILLA

Although not strictly speaking an accent, the diacritic cedilla is used with the letter <c> to show that it is to be pronounced soft (i.e. as /tʃ/) even though it is not followed by one of the front vowels <e>, <i> or <y>. Examples: arança /a'rɑna/ 'orange', tâço /'tɑu/ 'I keep quiet', çutat /y'tat/ 'city', vouç /'vu/ 'voice'.

The use of <ç> in the combination <sç> is analogous, although the pronunciation here is /ʃ/: ónta /'ʃonta/ 'joke', cognout /kunɔ'ʃyt/ 'known'.

Students of French, Portuguese and Catalan will note that the use of cedilla in Tundrian is analogous to these languages, although in all three the pronunciation of <ç> is /s/, not //, and the letter <ç> rarely if ever occurs initially (French ça is an exception) or (except in Catalan) finally.




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