Phonetics

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Losam
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Phonetics

Postby Losam » 2016-02-29, 1:24

I want to make a language that each letter or a set of letters represent an exactly phonemes. For example: The letter "i" in "pit" and "slice" don't have the same phoneme in English. Talking about that, a couple of days ago, I'm read a Finnish book grammar that talking in Finnish, each letter have the same phoneme, this is always true? Or how I can make this? Maybe I can write some rules for each sound/letter/?

Thanks a lot for the help.

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hashi
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Re: Phonetics

Postby hashi » 2016-02-29, 2:28

You may not be entirely correct there. A 'phoneme' is a perceived sound by the speakers of that language. You could consider that in English the <i> in <slice> and <pit> are perceived to be the same sound. The actual realisation of these sounds (as you know) are not the same, which makes them different allophones of the same phoneme.

If you want to assign one sound per letter, that's fine, however take into account that that's pretty rare in most natural languages. There is usually some degree of allophony present (eg. very little in Finnish, compared to a lot in English). The reason for this is quite simply just ease of pronunciation.

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Dormouse559
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Re: Phonetics

Postby Dormouse559 » 2016-02-29, 2:29

What you want is a phonemic orthography. To start, I think you'll want to understand the difference between phonology and orthography.

Phonology is the sounds of a language and how they change and interact. It is independent of orthography, and with natural languages, it exists before orthography.

Orthography is the way a language is represented. English uses a modified version of the Latin alphabet as its orthography. Portuguese and Finnish use their own modified versions.

To make a phonemic orthography for your language, I think you should start with the phonology, ignoring orthography. Come up with the language's phoneme inventory. Then proceed to decide which letter(s) will represent each phoneme. Ideally, you should end up with roughly one letter per phoneme.
N'hésite pas à corriger mes erreurs.

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Losam
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Re: Phonetics

Postby Losam » 2016-03-01, 0:10

Guys, thanks a lot. Well, that's the point: make a pronunciation more easily. But like you said, It's rare from any natural language.
Tell me if there something wrong: In my language, the vowel "e" has the sound of "e" in "head" and "bet", but it's more open like in "terve" in Finnish. When this vowel it's doubled "ee" has the sound of "e" in "girl" and "nurse". Well, maybe I can make this sound of "e" and doubled "ee" to not change how matter this vowel is positioned in a word? Or it's there a way more natural to do that?

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hashi
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Re: Phonetics

Postby hashi » 2016-03-01, 2:42

I would highly recommend learning the International Phonetic Alphabet, because "e" and "ee" could be very different pronunciations depending on where you're from.

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Vlürch
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Re: Phonetics

Postby Vlürch » 2016-03-09, 11:59

Finnish does have allophones, but there's no regularity whatsoever from what I can tell; linguists and linguistic sites will all tell you that Finnish has, as allophones of [h] at least [ħ] and [x], but some people never pronounce the "h" any differently in any word, whereas others will even have [χ] in some words. The "r" is also supposed to be always trilled, [r], but I couldn't count the times I've instead said [ɾ] or even [ɹ] or heard others do that. With vowels, it's even less regular, and it varies by dialect more than consonants; while "hän menee" (he/she goes) is /hæn meneː/ standardly, it could also be /xən məneː/, /hæn mennøː/, /xæn mennøː/, /xən mənnøː/... but that's not really an allophone thing, just dialectal differences. Still, saying that Finnish has one-to-one correspondence between writing and pronunciation isn't entirely accurate.

...but in the context of conlangs, everything's possible, so I don't know why you should limit yourself in any way.

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Re: Phonetics

Postby Dormouse559 » 2016-03-10, 6:34

Vlürch wrote:Finnish does have allophones
I don't think anyone said otherwise. We're talking about phonemic orthographies, not phonetic ones. Finnish spelling is very close to a phonemic ideal, less so a phonetic one.
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