The Accentuation of Old Prussian deiws ‘god’

Mokslo publikacijos / Scientific publications
Document Type:
Knygos dalis / Part of the book
Anglų kalba / English
The Accentuation of Old Prussian deiws ‘god’
In the Book:
Stressing the past: papers on Baltic and Slavic accentology / editors: Thomas Olander and Jenny Helena Larsson. Amsterdam: Rodopi, 2009. P. 83-92. (Studies in Slavic and general linguistics ; 35)
Baltų ir slavų prokalbė; Baltų kalbos; Kirčiavimas; Priegaidė; Prūsų kalba; Senoji prūsų kalba; Slavų kalbos.
Accentuation; Baltic languages; Balto-Slavic proto-language; Old Prussian; Prussian language; Slavic languages; Tone.
Summary / Abstract:

ENDespite the paucity of documentation, the phonological and prosodic system of the extinct Baltic language Old Prussian is relatively well known. Occasionally certain aspects of the Old Prussian writing system are reinterpreted and new ideas are proposed. In a paper published thirty-five years ago, for instance, Frederik Kortlandt made the proposal that the double writing of consonants in Old Prussian texts indicates that the following vowel was accented,' a proposal which was made independently by Dybo approximately at the same time.' The idea has received some support but continues to be debated' The most important Old Prussian document for prosodic purposes is the Third Catechism, or Enchiridion, which was translated into Old Prussian by Abel Will in the sixteenth century. A special feature of the Enchiridion is the macron-like diacritical sign found above certain vowels. In this paper I will concentrate on the significance of this macron - or rather, on the significance of its unexpected absence in certain words. At the end of the nineteenth century, Filipp Fortunatov and Erich Berneker reached the conclusion that Abel Will used the macron to indicate a long accented vowel or, in the case of diphthongs, the prominent part of an accented diphthong, thus distinguishing between rising and falling pitch in diphthongs.' The macron at the same time marks length and accent and, in diphthongs, tone. This use of the macron enables us to establish that the Old Prussian prosodic system comprised long and short vowels, a free accent and, in long syllables, two distinctive tones. The prosodic system of Old Prussian is in this respect quite similar to the Lithuanian prosodic system. A comparison of corresponding Old Prussian and Lithuanian word-forms shows a high degree of agreement in the position of the accent [...]. [Extract, p. 83]

Related Publications:
2020-12-17 20:20:39
Views: 8    Downloads: 1