Update: 2008-11-02 07:59 AM +0800


Burmese Grammar 1899

Formation of words (syllables):
Syllables with Coda consonants


by U Kyaw Tun (UKT), Tun Institute of Learning, http://www.tuninst.net
From Burmese Grammar and Grammatical Analysis by A. W. Lonsdale, Education Department, Burma, British Burma Press, Rangoon, 1899. Copied by UKT and staff of TIL . Start: 2008 Aug.

  indx-RBM4M |Top

Contents of this page
Formation of words (syllables)
Changing the peak vowel -- ch04-1.htm
Medials -- ch04-2.htm
Coda consonants -- ch04-3.htm
Syllables with coda consonants -- ch04-4.htm
Pali derived syllables with coda consonants -- ch04-5
  Second Table - conjunct endings (mostly Pli-derived words)
Conjuncts including Kinsi {kn~si:} -- ch04-06.htm


Author's footnotes

UKT notes  -- note the author's Pali transcriptions: is used in place of ā , e.g., Pli for Pāli .
I am showing Lonsdale's transcriptions within Alt0171-Al0187: ..., e.g. (without slanting the character within)
lateral consonants

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Contd from p024

Chapter IV contd.
Formation of words (syllables):
Pali derived syllables with coda consonants

Second Table: Showing the Permutations of Final Consonants and Vowels as they occur in Burmanized Pli words.
(UKT: I still need to check the Pli spellings.)

[UKT: The above table spans bottom part of p.024 and the top part part of p.025.]

39. {Ga.tht}, {la.tht}, {ha.tht}, and {La.tht} occur only after the triphthong {}, and are always mute, that is, they do not make any change in the sound; as, {mG:} m:, {ku.thl} ku-th, {wi.grh} wi-gy, {thi-hL} th-h. {ya.tht} and {ra.tht} are also mute after {}; as , {ko} k, {mring:mr} myin:m. {wa.tht} which is always mute, is now [UKT: since Lonsdale was writing, the time-line must be 1899.] considered to be unnecessary; hence it is only used occasionally as in {thauw} thaw, to indicate prolonged articulation. [{p025end}].

UKT: There are some points in connection with par.39 which should be commented:
triphthong -- See my note on diphthong in ch03.htm because triphthongs can be considered to be special cases of diphthongs. In spite of what Lonsdale and other phoneticians say, I maintain that there are no diphthongs and triphthongs in Burmese. What they are calling "diphthongs" and "triphthings" are from the way the graphemes are written and not from the way the phonemes are pronounced.
{} as a free vowel even when followed by an approximant or difficult-to-pronounce consonant (for Burmese-speakers) such as retroflex. Before we go into this, you need to re-read ch02.htm . One way to express a vowel of this type in Romabama is to take the lead from IPA and write the "silent" {a.tht} only after the pitch-register sign as: {m:G}, {ku.th-l}, {wi.gr-h}, {thi-h-L} .
For {la.tht} and {La.tht} to be expressed in English-Latin, you will need to know about the lateral consonants for English-speakers.

40. The vowel {a} before a final consonant has the same power as {a.}, as shown in the above table.

41. In the Burmanizing of Pli words in which {ma.} occurs as final, the anuthwtha or {th:th:ting} the:the:tin is often used in its stead, as in {kn} which is from the Pli {kam~ma.} .

UKT: Chapter IV has to be subdivided into smaller files to make the display faster. Para 42 is on the next file: ch04-6.htm .

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Author's footnotes


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UKT notes

lateral consonants

From: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lateral_consonant 081020

Laterals are "L"-like consonants pronounced with an occlusion made somewhere along the axis of the tongue, while air from the lungs escapes at one side or both sides of the tongue.
   Most commonly the tip of the tongue makes contact with the upper teeth (see dental consonant) or the upper gum (the alveolar ridge) just behind the teeth (see alveolar consonant). The most common laterals are approximants and belong to the class of liquids.

Laterals in various languages
English has one lateral phoneme: the lateral approximant /l/, which in many accents has two allophones. One, found before vowels as in lady or fly, is called clear l, pronounced as the alveolar lateral approximant [l] with a "neutral" position of the body of the tongue. The other variant, so-called dark l found before consonants or word-finally, as in bold or tell, is pronounced as the velarized alveolar lateral approximant [ɫ] with the tongue assuming a spoon-like shape with its back part raised, which gives the sound a [w]- or [ʟ] -like resonance. In some languages, like Albanian, those two sounds are different phonemes. East Slavic languages contrast [ɫ] and [lʲ] but do not have a plain [l].
   In many British accents (e.g. London English), dark [ɫ] may undergo vocalization through the reduction and loss of contact between the tip of the tongue the alveolar ridge, becoming a rounded back vowel or glide. This process turns tell into something like [tɛ ɰ. A similar process happened in Brazilian Portuguese and in Old French, resulting in [w], whence Modern French sauce as compared with Spanish salsa. Also in Polish historical [ɫ] (spelled ł ) has become [w] even word-initially or between vowels.
   In central and Venice dialects of Vneto intervocalic /l/ has turned into a semivocalic [e], so that the written word la bala is pronounced [abae̯a].
   Many aboriginal Australian languages have a series of three or four lateral approximants, as do various dialects of Irish. Rarer lateral consonants include the retroflex laterals that can be found in most Indic languages and in some Swedish dialects; and the sound of Welsh ll, the voiceless alveolar lateral fricative /ɬ/   that is also found in Zulu and many Semitic and Native American languages. In Adyghe and some Athapaskan languages like Hn both voiceless and voiced alveolar lateral fricative occur, but there is no approximant. Many of these languages also have lateral affricates. Some languages have palatal or velar voiceless lateral fricatives or affricates, such as Dahalo and Zulu but the IPA has no symbols for these sounds. However, appropriate symbols are easy to make by adding a lateral-fricative belt to the symbol for the corresponding lateral approximant (see below). Failing that, a devoicing diacritic is added to the approximant.
Nearly all languages with such lateral obstruents also have the approximant. However, Tlingit is an exception, with /tɬ, tɬʰ, tɬ, ɬ, ɬ/ but no /l/. Tibetan has a voiceless lateral approximant, usually romanized as lh, as in the name Lhasa. Pashto has retroflex lateral flap. [citation needed]. A large number of lateral click consonants, 17, occur in !X.

UKT: My wife Daw Than Than Tun and I have listened to many recordings of /ɬ/ and decided that it has the very sound of Burmese-Myanmar {lha.}. Myanmars visiting Britain, on coming across the Welsh <LL> which most of the English-speakers could not properly pronounce, are surprised to find that this typical Welsh sound is our very {lha.} -- Based on a story told by my friend Dr. Maung Di, the former Rector of the Rangoon Arts & Science University, of his student days studying Physical Chemistry in Britain.)

The following is by me - UKT

Laterals are generally considered to be a special case, since physically speaking they could be grouped among the fricatives and spirants. [UKT: Differentiate between "spirant" and an easily mistaken word "sibilant". "Spirant" coming from Latin spīrāns spīrant-, present participle of spīrāreto breathe -- AHTD] [UKT: The term "spirant" covers both "sibilant" exemplified by /s/ and "thibilant" by /θ/.]
   They are called laterals since, during their production, the back of the tongue makes contact with the hard palate while the front of the tongue sinks down, channeling the air laterally around the tongue, down the side (or sometimes both sides) of the mouth (Figure 3.25.) On the other hand, for non-lateral articulations, the back of the tongue rests against the top molars, and the air flows over the tongue down the center of the mouth.

UKT: Central/lateral dichotomy of tongue positions in production of consonants.
A central consonant is a consonant sound that is produced when air flows across the center of the mouth over the tongue. E.g. [k] as in <skin>, [z] in <zoo>, [n] in <plan>, etc.
A lateral consonant is a consonant in which air flows along the sides of the tongue rather than over its center.
(based on Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Central_consonant 081020.) (The figures on the right from: http://www.unil.ch/ling/english/index.html). The following are examples of lateral consonants in Burmese-Myanmar: {la.}, we can say that the following conjuncts formed from {la.} also belong to this class:
{lya.} {lwa.} {lha.} {lhya.} {lhwa.},

The location of the lateral channel through which the air flows is unimportant: whether it is on the left, the right, or both sides of the mouth, the nature of the sound produced is unchanged.

There are two distinct types of lateral:
Lateral fricatives, where the articulation, requiring a great deal of muscular tension, resembles that of the fricatives (except for the position of the tongue);
Non-fricative lateral, often called liquids, whose articulation is very close to the spirants'.

Go back lateral-conso-note-b

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