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Sound Change
A sound change, in historical linguistics, is a change in the pronunciation of a language. A sound change can involve the replacement of one speech sound (or, more generally, one phonetic feature value) by a different one (called phonetic change) or a more general change to the speech sounds that exist ( phonological change), such as the merger of two sounds or the creation of a new sound. A sound change can eliminate the affected sound, or a new sound can be added. Sound changes can be environmentally conditioned if the change occurs in only some sound environments, and not others. The term "sound change" refers to diachronic changes, which occur in a language's sound system. On the other hand, " alternation" refers to changes that happen synchronically (within the language of an individual speaker, depending on the neighbouring sounds) and do not change the language's underlying system (for example, the ''-s'' in the English plural can be pronounced differently depending ...
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Historical Linguistics
Historical linguistics, also termed diachronic linguistics, is the scientific study of language change over time. Principal concerns of historical linguistics include: # to describe and account for observed changes in particular languages # to reconstruct the pre-history of languages and to determine their relatedness, grouping them into language families ( comparative linguistics) # to develop general theories about how and why language changes # to describe the history of speech communities # to study the history of words, i.e. etymology Historical linguistics is founded on the Uniformitarian Principle, which is defined by linguist Donald Ringe as: History and development Western modern historical linguistics dates from the late-18th century. It grew out of the earlier discipline of philology, the study of ancient texts and documents dating back to antiquity. At first, historical linguistics served as the cornerstone of comparative linguistics, primarily as a ...
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Dialects
The term dialect (from Latin , , from the Ancient Greek word , 'discourse', from , 'through' and , 'I speak') can refer to either of two distinctly different types of linguistic phenomena: One usage refers to a variety of a language that is a characteristic of a particular group of the language's speakers. Under this definition, the dialects or varieties of a particular language are closely related and, despite their differences, are most often largely mutually intelligible, especially if close to one another on the dialect continuum. The term is applied most often to regional speech patterns, but a dialect may also be defined by other factors, such as social class or ethnicity. A dialect that is associated with a particular social class can be termed a sociolect, a dialect that is associated with a particular ethnic group can be termed an ethnolect, and a geographical/regional dialect may be termed a regiolectWolfram, Walt and Schilling, Natalie. 2016. ''American English: Dial ...
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Lexical Diffusion
Lexical diffusion is the hypothesis that a sound change is an abrupt change that spreads gradually across the words in a language to which it is applicable. It contrasts with the Neogrammarian view that a sound change results from phonetically-conditioned articulatory drift acting uniformly on all applicable words, which implies that sound changes are regular, with exceptions attributed to analogy and dialect borrowing. Similar views were expressed by Romance dialectologists in the late 19th century but were reformulated and renamed by William Wang and coworkers studying varieties of Chinese in the 1960s and the 1970s. William Labov found evidence for both processes but argued that they operate at different levels. Neogrammarians and dialectologists A key assumption of historical linguistics is that sound change is regular. The principle was summarized by the Neogrammarians in the late 19th century in the slogan "sound laws suffer no exceptions" and forms the basis of the c ...
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Voiced Velar Stop
The voiced velar plosive or stop is a type of consonantal sound used in many spoken languages. Some languages have the voiced pre-velar plosive, which is articulated slightly more front compared with the place of articulation of the prototypical velar plosive, though not as front as the prototypical palatal plosive. Conversely, some languages have the voiced post-velar plosive, which is articulated slightly behind the place of articulation of the prototypical velar plosive, though not as back as the prototypical uvular plosive. IPA symbol The symbol in the International Phonetic Alphabet that represents this sound is , and the equivalent X-SAMPA symbol is g. Strictly, the IPA symbol is the so-called single-storey G , but the double-storey G is considered an acceptable alternative. The Unicode character renders as either a single-storey G or a double-storey G depending on font; the character is always a single-storey G, but it is generally available only in fonts with th ...
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Vulgar Latin
Vulgar Latin, also known as Popular or Colloquial Latin, is the range of non-formal registers of Latin spoken from the Late Roman Republic onward. Through time, Vulgar Latin would evolve into numerous Romance languages. Its literary counterpart was a form of either Classical Latin or Late Latin, depending on the time period. Origin of the term During the Classical period, Roman authors referred to the informal, everyday variety of their own language as ''sermo plebeius'' or ''sermo vulgaris'', meaning "common speech". The modern usage of the term Vulgar Latin dates to the Renaissance, when Italian thinkers began to theorize that their own language originated in a sort of "corrupted" Latin that they assumed formed an entity distinct from the literary Classical variety, though opinions differed greatly on the nature of this "vulgar" dialect. The early 19th-century French linguist Raynouard is often regarded as the father of modern Romance philology. Observing that t ...
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Spanish Language
Spanish ( or , Castilian) is a Romance language of the Indo-European language family that evolved from colloquial Latin spoken on the Iberian peninsula. Today, it is a global language with more than 500 million native speakers, mainly in the Americas and Spain. Spanish is the official language of 20 countries. It is the world's second-most spoken native language after Mandarin Chinese; the world's fourth-most spoken language overall after English, Mandarin Chinese, and Hindustani (Hindi-Urdu); and the world's most widely spoken Romance language. The largest population of native speakers is in Mexico. Spanish is part of the Ibero-Romance group of languages, which evolved from several dialects of Vulgar Latin in Iberia after the collapse of the Western Roman Empire in the 5th century. The oldest Latin texts with traces of Spanish come from mid-northern Iberia in the 9th century, and the first systematic written use of the language happened in Toledo, a prominent city of ...
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Lexicon
A lexicon is the vocabulary of a language or branch of knowledge (such as nautical or medical). In linguistics, a lexicon is a language's inventory of lexemes. The word ''lexicon'' derives from Greek word (), neuter of () meaning 'of or for words'. Linguistic theories generally regard human languages as consisting of two parts: a lexicon, essentially a catalogue of a language's words (its wordstock); and a grammar, a system of rules which allow for the combination of those words into meaningful sentences. The lexicon is also thought to include bound morphemes, which cannot stand alone as words (such as most affixes). In some analyses, compound words and certain classes of idiomatic expressions, collocations and other phrases are also considered to be part of the lexicon. Dictionaries are lists of the lexicon, in alphabetical order, of a given language; usually, however, bound morphemes are not included. Size and organization Items in the lexicon are called lexemes, l ...
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Analogy
Analogy (from Greek ''analogia'', "proportion", from ''ana-'' "upon, according to" lso "against", "anew"+ ''logos'' "ratio" lso "word, speech, reckoning" is a cognitive process of transferring information or meaning from a particular subject (the analog, or source) to another (the target), or a linguistic expression corresponding to such a process. In a narrower sense, analogy is an inference or an argument from one particular to another particular, as opposed to deduction, induction, and abduction, in which at least one of the premises, or the conclusion, is general rather than particular in nature. The term analogy can also refer to the relation between the source and the target themselves, which is often (though not always) a similarity, as in the biological notion of analogy. Analogy plays a significant role in problem solving, as well as decision making, argumentation, perception, generalization, memory, creativity, invention, prediction, emotion, explanation, ...
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Morphology (linguistics)
In linguistics, morphology () is the study of words, how they are formed, and their relationship to other words in the same language. It analyzes the structure of words and parts of words such as stems, root words, prefixes, and suffixes. Morphology also looks at parts of speech, intonation and stress, and the ways context can change a word's pronunciation and meaning. Morphology differs from morphological typology, which is the classification of languages based on their use of words, and lexicology, which is the study of words and how they make up a language's vocabulary. While words, along with clitics, are generally accepted as being the smallest units of syntax, in most languages, if not all, many words can be related to other words by rules that collectively describe the grammar for that language. For example, English speakers recognize that the words ''dog'' and ''dogs'' are closely related, differentiated only by the plurality morpheme "-s", only found bound to noun ...
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Phonology
Phonology is the branch of linguistics that studies how languages or dialects systematically organize their sounds or, for sign languages, their constituent parts of signs. The term can also refer specifically to the sound or sign system of a particular language variety. At one time, the study of phonology related only to the study of the systems of phonemes in spoken languages, but may now relate to any linguistic analysis either: Sign languages have a phonological system equivalent to the system of sounds in spoken languages. The building blocks of signs are specifications for movement, location, and handshape. At first, a separate terminology was used for the study of sign phonology ('chereme' instead of 'phoneme', etc.), but the concepts are now considered to apply universally to all human languages. Terminology The word 'phonology' (as in ' phonology of English') can refer either to the field of study or to the phonological system of a given language. This is one ...
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Regularization (linguistics)
Regularization is a linguistic phenomenon observed in language acquisition, language development, and language change typified by the replacement of irregular forms in morphology or syntax by regular ones. Examples are "gooses" instead of "geese" in child speech and replacement of the Middle English plural form for " cow", "kine", with "cows". Regularization is a common process in natural languages; regularized forms can replace loanword forms (such as with "cows" and "kine") or coexist with them (such as with "formulae" and " formulas" or " hepatitides" and " hepatitises"). Erroneous regularization is also called ''overregularization''. In overregularization the regular ways of modifying or connecting words are mistakenly applied to words that require irregular modifications or connections. It is a normal effect observed in the language of beginner and intermediate language-learners, whether native-speaker children or foreign-speaker adults. Because most natural languages have ...
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Prosody (linguistics)
In linguistics, prosody () is concerned with elements of speech that are not individual phonetic segments (vowels and consonants) but are properties of syllables and larger units of speech, including linguistic functions such as intonation, stress, and rhythm. Such elements are known as suprasegmentals. Prosody may reflect features of the speaker or the utterance: their emotional state; the form of utterance (statement, question, or command); the presence of irony or sarcasm; emphasis, contrast, and focus. It may reflect elements of language not encoded by grammar or choice of vocabulary. Attributes of prosody In the study of prosodic aspects of speech, it is usual to distinguish between auditory measures ( subjective impressions produced in the mind of the listener) and objective measures (physical properties of the sound wave and physiological characteristics of articulation that may be measured objectively). Auditory (subjective) and objective ( acoustic and artic ...
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