By Jasmine Dum-Tragut

ISBN-10: 9027238146

ISBN-13: 9789027238146

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Extra info for Armenian: Modern Eastern Armenian (London Oriental and African Language Library, V. 14)

Sample text

1. The open mid front vowel phoneme [7], orthographically expressed » e and ¿ē a. In the initial position [7] is usually pronounced with a glide as [j7]. As stated above, the glide is not written; thus, in the initial position [j7] is written with » e and, as for example in: ºñ¨³Ý Erewan [j7n7‚cn], »ñ³½ eraz [j7ncz] “dream”; »ë es [j7s] “I”; – The exception to this rule in the initial position is found in the present tense forms of the auxiliary, which are pronounced without the initial glide as [7], as in »Ù em [7m] “I am”, »ë es [7s] “you are”, »Ýù enk’ [7nkh] “we are” »ù ek’ [7kh] “you are”, »Ý en [7n] “they are”.

It can almost be considered as convention in colloquial and in “substandard” written Armenian to realise these clusters without the initial schwa-epenthesis; sometimes, and with increasing frequency, also without an epenthesis between the first two consonants. 39 A possible reason for this might be the range of Russian lexemes that have entered Armenian ­during the Soviet period and which are regularly pronounced with the initial schwa in Russian and, thus, also in Armenian, such as ëåáñï sport [spfnt] “Sport”, ßï³µ štab [wtcb], ëϳݹ³É skandal [skcndcl] “scandal”, ëï³Ý¹³ñ¹ standard [stcndcnd] “standard” as well as names such as êå³ñï³Ï Spartak [Spcntck], êåÇÝá½³ Spinoza [Spinfzc] etc.

That this normative rule of SMEA is sometimes heavily “violated” because of the gradually disappearing schwa-epenthesis in sibilant-plosive clusters, can easily be shown by examples from daily newspapers, school books etc. Chapter 1. pres it is near [ cjtsh-nç6s-pcsvum] apaga-yum. pl electional [ uŠ7nnç6s-tfncg6n7tshin] p’op’oxut’yun-ner-i change-pl-dat naxagic’-ě. draft. nom-the receive-inf-abl heto kmekn-en post depart-cond. pl Naxijewan. nom [tuŠcts-ěstcnclfv] durs ēr gr-v-el hivandanoc’-ic’.

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Armenian: Modern Eastern Armenian (London Oriental and African Language Library, V. 14) by Jasmine Dum-Tragut

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