Proto-Urianian phonology

Byntic Azurian Urianian Muna Tubenian Urianian Romani











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In this material we already see substantial change from the Proto-Indoeuropean fundament. We can reconstruct the following changes, in the following probable order:

  1. Final m becomes n. This must happen before the loss of final vowels, because an m originally followed by a final vowel remains unchanged.
  2. The short diphthongs ei and oi merge into a long ē, and eu and ou into a long ō. The schwa (interconsonantal laryngeal) becomes /a/.
  3. Unaspirated stops are aspirated, aspirated stops become fricatives, and apparently the labiovelars are already being palatalised. More on this under Old Urianian.
  4. Long final vowels are shortened, short final unstressed vowels are lost, short final stressed vowels are unchanged. Loss of some internal unstressed vowels to conform to the preferred CVC syllable pattern. Thus, most composition vowels are lost.
  5. Initial s is lost before consonant clusters (including syllabic consonants), internal s is lost before consonants (including syllabic ones), lengthening the preceding vowel. An s preceding a w merge into a voiced dental fricative (/ð/).
  6. Syllabic l, m, n and r in final position or if followed by a vowel are split into i+consonant, into o+consonant before w, and into u+consonant otherwise.
  7. Ablaut is lost from the plural of verb forms that are not ablauted in the singular.
  8. Finally, dropping of prepositions is prevalent already in the earliest Old Urianian texts, so we may infer that this process had started in the proto stage, too.

Thus we are left with the following phoneme inventory:

Vowels, long and short: e i a o u
Semivowel: w
Diphthongs, long and short: ai au
Glides: l m n r
Sibilants: s β ð ɣ ç ʝ
Stops: bʰ dʰ gʰ pʰ tʰ kʰ

In the text samples on these pages, the orthography of the Old Urianian texts written with Latin letters will be used, except that the w and the β, which were both written with a v, will be rendered with w and v respectively. The stops will thus be written b d g p t k, and the sibilants s v z h c j, in the above order, otherwise as above.

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