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Prosodic identity in copy epenthesis

Evidence for a correspondence-based approach

Abstract

This paper focuses on languages that exhibit processes of copy epenthesis, specifically those where the similarity between a copy vowel and its host extends to prosodic or suprasegmental resemblance. We argue that copy vowels and their hosts strive for identity in all prosodic properties, and show that this drive for prosodic identity can cause misapplication in the assignment of properties such as stress and length. To explain these effects, we argue that any successful analysis of copy epenthesis must involve a correspondence relation (following Kitto and de Lacy 1999). Our proposal successfully predicts the extant typology of prosodic identity effects in copy epenthesis; alternative analyses of copy epenthesis relying solely on featural spreading (e.g. Kawahara 2007) or gestural realignment (e.g. Hall 2003, 2006) do not naturally capture the effects discussed here.

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Notes

  1. 1.

    We use “Host-Epenthetic” throughout the paper instead of Kitto and de Lacy’s “Base-Epenthetic” so as to avoid confusion with morphological bases.

  2. 2.

    We assume that HE-Ident[F] stands for a collection of faithfulness constraints that require identity for individual feature values (i.e. HE-Ident[±back], etc.). With Kitto and de Lacy (1999:5), we assume that cases of partial copy can be derived when HE-Ident constraints are interleaved with markedness constraints that penalize certain feature values.

  3. 3.

    Similarly, in Tahitian, there is exceptional antepenultimate stress when the final two vowels are identical and separated by [ʔ] (Bickmore 1995; Kitto and de Lacy 1999). However, there is no direct evidence that either of the vowels is epenthetic.

  4. 4.

    See e.g. Kager (1994) on *Clash in Optimality Theory. It is also possible to replace *Clash with a constraint that bans the presence of multiple stresses within a word (see e.g. Prince 1983 on culminativity). For the purposes of this analysis, the two options are equivalent.

  5. 5.

    A reviewer asks us to clarify our assumptions regarding the analysis of loanword adaptation. We assume here that the input form for Selayarese loans is the Bahasa Indonesian surface form (e.g. /kartu/ → [karáːtu]). This assumption amounts to a claim that a Selayarese speaker would derive [karáːtu] from /kartu/ on-line.

  6. 6.

    Note that in [potoló-kːu] the stressed vowel does not lengthen; rather, the suffixal consonant geminates. This peculiarity has to do with properties of the possessive suffix, which we do not discuss here (see Broselow 2008:22).

  7. 7.

    A reviewer asks if, under the theory we adopt, additional kinds of surface correspondence relations are possible. On this point, we are agnostic. The claim that epenthetic vowels stand in correspondence with a host does not exclude the possibility that other kinds of surface correspondence relations exist, but it also does not imply it.

  8. 8.

    There are cases where copy vowels do not completely resemble their hosts as a result of agreement for [±back] with a preceding sonorant (see esp. Clements 1986). As far as we are aware, these words have the same prosodic properties as do the words where copy and host are identical. For expositional simplicity, we do not discuss the cases of partial copy.

  9. 9.

    Transcriptions are from Hammond et al. (2014). We do not know whether or not the [l]’s and [r]’s in these examples are lenited, so we have not reconciled these with the transcription conventions of Børgstrom (1937) and Clements (1986).

  10. 10.

    Bosch and de Jong (1997:7) also claim that “vowels previous to epenthetic vowels are shorter than their non-epenthetic counterparts”, suggesting that the duration of V1 depends on whether or not V2 is epenthetic (a claim later picked up on by Hall 2003:97 and Stanton and Zukoff 2016). This claim, however, is not supported by the data: Bosch and de Jong’s statistical analysis did not find a significant effect of the (non-)epenthetic status of V2 on V1’s duration (see their Table 1, p. 7).

  11. 11.

    All MAX and DEP constraints in this paper are IO faithfulness constraints. In representing the names of Input-Output faithfulness constraints like DEP-μ, we omit the IO designation in all cases where this does not result in confusion with an HE faithfulness constraint.

  12. 12.

    We do not discuss here why these clusters in particular might be subject to epenthesis; the issue of why some clusters are broken up by epenthesis and others are not is orthogonal to the current topic of discussion (though see Hall 2003:22ff for one idea as to why only rising-sonority clusters would be targeted, and Fleischhacker 2005 for another).

  13. 13.

    Hall’s (2003) position on Irish Gaelic is consistent with ours: she claims that the inserted vowels were historically intrusive, but have been reanalyzed as segments (e.g. 2003: 72, 95). It is worth noting however that Irish Gaelic epenthesis does satisfy several of Hall’s other criteria for gestural intrusion: the vowel’s quality is schwa (but can be influenced by the surrounding consonants), and it generally occurs in heterorganic sonorant-stop clusters. If it turns out that a gestural analysis of Irish Gaelic epenthesis is appropriate, this argument for the correspondence-based approach is invalid.

  14. 14.

    Systems displaying post-peninitial stress are rare, but not unattested (cf. Gordon 2002): Kager (2012) notes that post-peninitial position is possible in Azkoitia Basque (Hualde 1998) and Choguita Rarámuri (Caballero 2008, 2011).

  15. 15.

    Note that what we call *Clash here could just as well be defined as a constraint that disprefers high pitch plateaus.

  16. 16.

    To be clear, we assume that the unit for stress assignment is the set of {ι,μ}. The difference in notation reflects a difference in duration and not a difference in stressability.

  17. 17.

    For now, we leave aside discussion of cases in which copy epenthesis occurs across some consonants and default epenthesis occurs across others; see e.g. Kawahara (2007) on Japanese. The fact that both copy and default epenthesis are consistent with the P-map suggests that systems employing both repairs necessarily are, too.

  18. 18.

    An additional fact often cited in this context has to do with reduplication: Ho-Chunk reduplicants are generally monosyllabic (e.g. gihu ‘to swing’ → gihu-hu ‘to wag its tail’, Miner 1989:149), but DL sequences can exceptionally reduplicate in full (e.g. ‘bald’ → ʃ a ‘bald in spots’, Miner 1989:146). However, the transcription of stress in these forms is inconsistent across different works, so we refrain from making any claims regarding these data.

  19. 19.

    We shy away from discussing alternative approaches to Ho-Chunk stress, as they largely assume different facts about stress placement than we have, and it is difficult to compare analyses when they make different assumptions about the description of the facts. (Even Miner 1979, who acknowledges the existence of prominence on both members of the DL sequence, does not present an analysis that is consistent with his description of the data.)

  20. 20.

    This preference could also be implemented as a markedness constraint that bans long vowels, as in the analysis of Scottish Gaelic (Sect. 3.2.2). For the purposes of this demonstration, the two options make equivalent predictions.

  21. 21.

    A reviewer asks whether or not, in cases of consonant copy, the inserted segment and its host stand in correspondence with one another. We assume they do, and that the absence of attested misapplication effects is an accidental gap: consonant copy is rarer than vowel copy, and misapplication effects of the sort discussed here are uncommon.

  22. 22.

    With the exception of Selayarese, which allows copying only across coronal continuants. As discussed in Sect. 2.2, however, epenthesis in Selayarese should be seen as a last-resort strategy that occurs only when the word-final consonant cannot be modified. It thus does not constitute an example of segmental blocking.

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Acknowledgements

Author’s names are in alphabetical order. We are grateful to Adam Albright, Donca Steriade, Eric Bakovic, Edward Flemming, Gunnar Ólafur Hansson, Bruce Hayes, Junko Ito, Michael Kenstowicz, Ezer Rasin, Nina Topintzi, Eva Zimmerman, and audiences at MIT, CLS 51, and 24mfm for helpful discussion. Earlier portions of this research have been published as Stanton and Zukoff (2016); comments from three NLLT reviewers (Paul de Lacy, Shigeto Kawahara, and one anonymous reviewer) and the associate editor (Rachel Walker) have helped shape the paper into its present form. All remaining mistakes are ours.

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Appendix: Copy epenthesis survey

Appendix: Copy epenthesis survey

The table below summarizes the survey of 51 copy epenthesis processes from which the data and generalizations in this paper are drawn. The survey includes those languages cited in Kawahara’s (2007) survey whose sources were available either online or at MIT’s Hayden Library, as well as assorted other cases available online. Kawahara distinguishes between cases of “diachronic” and “synchronic” copy epenthesis, and that distinction is recorded here. The term “Complex Misapplication” refers to instances of misapplication that do not receive a straightforward analysis based on the avoidance of stressing epenthetic vowels (e.g. McCarthy and Prince 1994 on Makassarese), or faithfulness to the source stress in the case of loanwords (e.g. Kenstowicz 2007 on Fijian).

Language Type Complex Misapplication? Source(s)
Ho-Chunk Synchronic Yes (Sect. 4) Miner (1979) et seq.
Hale and White Eagle (1980)
Hall (2003)
Selayarese Synchronic Yes (Sect. 2) Mithun and Basri (1986)
Kitto and de Lacy (1999)
Broselow (2008)
Scottish Gaelic (Barra dialect) Synchronic Yes (Sect. 3) Børgstrom (1937, 1940)
Clements (1986)
Bosch and de Jong (1997)
Hall (2003)
Hammond et al. (2014)
Arabic, Bedouin Synchronic None mentioned McCarthy (1994)
Bardi Synchronic None mentioned Metcalfe (1975)
Bowern (2012)
Capanahua Synchronic None mentioned Safir (1979)
Chamicuro Synchronic None mentioned Parker (2001)
Desano Synchronic None mentioned Miller (1999)
de Lima Silva (2012)
East Cushitic Diachronic None mentioned Blevins (2003)
Farsi Synchronic None mentioned Shademan (2002)
Fijian Synchronic None mentioned Kenstowicz (2007)
Kumagai (2016)
Finnish, Eastern Diachronic None mentioned Campbell (2013)
Fula Synchronic None mentioned Paradis (1996)
Paradis and Prunet (1989)
Futankoore Synchronic None mentioned Paradis and Prunet (1989)
Gadaba Synchronic None mentioned Bhaskararao (1998)
Hebrew Synchronic None mentioned McCarthy (1994)
Hawaiian Synchronic None mentioned Kitto (1997)
Kitto and de Lacy (1999)
Iraqw Synchronic None mentioned Rose (1996)
Mous (2004)
Japanese Synchronic None mentioned Kawahara (2007)
Kekchi Synchronic None mentioned Campbell (1974)
Hall (2003)
Kinyarwanda Synchronic None mentioned Uffmann (2003)
Kolami Synchronic None mentioned Clements (1991)
Latin, Late Diachronic None mentioned Steriade (1990)
Lenakel Synchronic None mentioned Lynch (1978)
Lettinese Diachronic None mentioned Mills and Grima (1980)
Maga Rukai Synchronic None mentioned de Lacy (2002)
Makah Synchronic None mentioned Werle (2002)
Makassarese Synchronic None mentioned McCarthy and Prince (1994)
McCarthy (1998)
Maori Synchronic None mentioned Kitto (1997)
Kitto and de Lacy (1999)
Marshallese Synchronic None mentioned Bender (1968)
Mawu Synchronic None mentioned Kenstowicz (2003)
Moa Diachronic None mentioned Mills and Grima (1980)
Mohawk Synchronic None mentioned Postal (1969)
Mono Synchronic None mentioned Olson (2005)
Northern Tiwa (Picuris, Taos) Synchronic None mentioned Nichols (1994)
Ponapean Synchronic None mentioned Rehg and Sohl (1981)
Rennallese Synchronic None mentioned Brasington (1978)
Sardinian Diachronic None mentioned Steriade (1990)
Shona Synchronic None mentioned Uffmann (2003)
Samoan Synchronic None mentioned Uffmann (2003)
Slavic, Eastern Diachronic None mentioned Steriade (1990)
Somali Synchronic None mentioned Kenstowicz (1994)
Sranan Synchronic None mentioned Uffmann (2003)
Alber and Plag (2001)
Tigre Synchronic None mentioned McCarthy (1994)
Rose (1996)
Tojolobal Synchronic None mentioned Furbee-Losee (1974)
Steriade (1987)
Tunica Synchronic None mentioned Haas (1940)
Welsh Synchronic None mentioned Awbery (2009)
Wolof Synchronic None mentioned Ka (1994)
Yapese Synchronic None mentioned Jensen (1977)
Yoruba Synchronic None mentioned Akinlabi (1993)
Nelson (2003)
Yuhup Synchronic None mentioned Lopes and Parker (1999)

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Stanton, J., Zukoff, S. Prosodic identity in copy epenthesis. Nat Lang Linguist Theory 36, 637–684 (2018). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11049-017-9385-9

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Keywords

  • Copy epenthesis
  • Phonology
  • Correspondence
  • Misapplication
  • Prosody