Advertisement

The Role of Pitch Cue in the Perception of the Estonian Long Quantity

  • Pärtel LippusEmail author
  • Karl Pajusalu
  • Jüri Allik
Chapter
Part of the Studies in Natural Language and Linguistic Theory book series (SNLT)

Abstract

Pitch has an important role in the Estonian three-way quantity system. In short (Q1) and long (Q2) quantity degrees the pitch falls at the end of the primary stressed syllable but in the overlong quantity (Q3), the pitch falls in the first half of the primary stressed syllable. While the primary cue for distinguishing quantity is the temporal structure of the disyllabic foot, pitch is a vital secondary cue for distinguishing Q2 and Q3. Previous perception experiments using modified temporal structure demonstrated quantity cannot be identified by the temporal structure if the pitch cue is contradicting. In this paper we show that the pitch cue can trigger Q3 perception if the temporal structure of the foot is typical for Q2. The pitch contour that triggers Q3 perception falls in the middle of V1, leaving both a high and a low plateau in the primary stressed syllable. Steadily falling pitch in V1, or an early or late fall in V1 favours Q2 perception.

Keywords

Estonian Quantity Tone accent Perception 

Notes

Acknowledgments

We would like to thank all our test subjects and Einar Meister for helping to find the test subjects. We are also very grateful to Eva Liina Asu-Garcia, and to anonymous reviewers for their comments on this paper, and to Cameron Robert Rule for editing the language of this paper. The present research was partly supported by the Estonian Science Foundation grant No. 7904.

References

  1. Asu, Eva Liina. 2004. The Phonetics and Phonology of Estonian Intonation. Doctoral dissertation. University of Cambridge.Google Scholar
  2. Asu, Eva Liina and Francis Nolan. 1999. The effect of intonation on pitch cues to the Estonian quantity contrast. In Proceedings of the 14th International Congress of Phonetic Sciences, San Francisco, USA, 1–7 August 1999, Vol. 3, 1873–1876. San Francisco.Google Scholar
  3. Asu, Eva Liina and Francis Nolan. 2007. The analysis of low accentuation in Estonian. Language and Speech 50(4): 567–588.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Asu, Eva Liina, Pärtel Lippus, Pire Teras and Tuuli Tuisk. 2009. The realization of Estonian quantity characteristics in spontaneous speech. In Martti Vainio, Reijo Aulanko and Olli Aaltonen, (eds.) Nordic Prosody. Proceedings of the Xth Conference, Helsinki 2008, 49–56. Frankfurt: Peter Lang.Google Scholar
  5. Boersma, Paul and David Weenink. 2007. Praat: Doing Phonetics by Computer (Version 4.6.31) [Computer program]. http://www.praat.org/. Retrieved 12 October 2007.
  6. Eek, Arvo. 1980a. Estonian quantity: notes on the perception of duration. In Arvo Eek, (ed.) Estonian Papers in Phonetics 1979, 5–29. Tallinn: Academy of Sciences of the Estonian S. S. R. Institute of Language and Literature.Google Scholar
  7. Eek, Arvo. 1980b. Further information on the perception of Estonian quantity. In Arvo Eek, (ed.) Estonian Papers in Phonetics 1979, 31–56. Tallinn: Academy of Sciences of the Estonian S. S. R. Institute of Language and Literature.Google Scholar
  8. Eek, Arvo and Einar Meister. 2003. Foneetilisi katseid ja arutlusi kvantiteedi alalt (I). Häälikukestusi muutvad kontekstid ja välde. Keel ja Kirjandus 11–12: 815–837, 904–918.Google Scholar
  9. Eek, Arvo and Einar Meister. 2004. Foneetilisi katseid ja arutlusi kvantiteedi alalt (II). Takt, silp ja välde. Keel ja Kirjandus 4–5: 251–271, 336–357.Google Scholar
  10. Helson, H. 1947. Adaptation-level as frame of reference for prediction of psychophysical data. American Journal of Psychology 60: 1–29.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Kask, Arnold. 1972. Eesti keele ajalooline grammatika. Tartu: Tartu Riiklik Ülikool.Google Scholar
  12. Lehiste, Ilse. 1960. Segmental and syllabic quantity in Estonian. In American Studies in Uralic Linguistics 1, 21–82. Bloomington.Google Scholar
  13. Lehiste, Ilse. 1970–1975. Experiments with synthetic speech concerning quantity in Estonian. In Valmen Hallap (ed.) Congressus Tertius Internationalis Fenno-Ugristarum, Tallinae habitus, 17–23. VIII 1970. Pars I: Acta Linguistica., 254–69. Tallinn: Valgus.Google Scholar
  14. Lehiste, Ilse. 1976. Influence of fundamental frequency pattern on the perception of duration. Journal of Phonetics 4: 113–117.Google Scholar
  15. Lehiste, Ilse. 1978. Polytonicity in the area surrounding the Baltic Sea. In Gårding, E., Bruce, G., Bannert, R, (eds.) Nordic Prosody: Papers from a Symposium, 237–247. Lund: Department of Linguistics, Lund University.Google Scholar
  16. Lehiste Ilse. 1997. Search for phonetic correlates in Estonian Prosody. In Ilse Lehiste and Jaan Ross, (eds.) Estonian Prosody: Papers from a Symposium, 11–35. Tallinn: Institute of Estonian Language.Google Scholar
  17. Lehiste, Ilse. 2003. Prosodic change in progress: from quantity language to accent language. In Paula Fikkert and Haike Jacobs, (eds.) Development in Prosodic Systems, 47–66. Berlin, New York: Mouton de Gruyter.Google Scholar
  18. Lehiste Ilse and Douglas G. Danforth. 1977. Foneettisten vihjeiden hierarkia viron kvantiteetin havaitsemisessa. Virittäjä 4: 404–411.Google Scholar
  19. Liiv, Georg. 1961. Eesti keele kolme vältusastme vokaalide kestus ja meloodiatüübid. Keel ja Kirjandus 7, 8, 412–424, 480–490.Google Scholar
  20. Lippus, Pärtel and Karl Pajusalu. 2009. Regional variation in the perception of Estonian quantity. In Martti Vainio, Reijo Aulanko and Olli Aaltonen, (eds.) Nordic Prosody. Proceedings of the Xth Conference, Helsinki 2008, 151–157. Frankfurt: Peter Lang.Google Scholar
  21. Lippus, Pärtel, Karl Pajusalu and Jüri Allik. 2007. The Tonal Component in Perception of the Estonian Quantity. In Jürgen Trouvain and William J. Barry, (eds.) The Proceedings of the 16th International Congress of Phonetic Sciences: 16th International Congress of Phonetic Sciences, Saarbrücken, Germany, 6–10 August 2007, 1049–1052. Saarbrücken.Google Scholar
  22. Lippus, Pärtel, Karl Pajusalu and Jüri Allik. 2009. The tonal component of Estonian quantity in native and non-native perception. Journal of Phonetics 37: 388–396.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Nolan, Francis and Eva Liina Asu. 2009. The pairwise variability index and coexisting rhytms in language. Phonetica 66: 64–77.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Remmel, Mart. 1975. The Phonetic Scope of Estonian: Some Specifications. Preprint KKI-5. Tallinn: Academy of Sciences of the Estonian S.S.R. Institute of Language and Literature.Google Scholar
  25. Traunmüller, Hartmund and Diana Krull. 2003. The effect of local speaking rate on the perception of quantity in Estonian. Phonetica 60: 187–207.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Viitso, Tiit-Rein. 2003. Phonology, morphology and word formation. In Mati Erelt (ed.) Estonian Language, 9–92. Tallinn: Estonian Academy Publishers.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of Estonian and General Linguistics, University of TartuTartuEstonia
  2. 2.Institute of Psychology, University of TartuTartuEstonia

Personalised recommendations