Stress and rhythm oddities

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eldin raigmore
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Stress and rhythm oddities

Post by eldin raigmore »

1. Does your language have a different stress-and/or-rhythm pattern for native words than for loan-words?
2. Does your language have a different stress-and/or-rhythm pattern for nouns than for other parts-of-speech?
3. Does your language have a different stress-and/or-rhythm pattern for verbs than for other parts-of-speech?

4. Does your language have weight-sensitive primary stress but weight-insensitive rhythm?
5. Does your language have weight-sensitive rhythm but weight-insensitive primary stress?
6. Does your language have both weight-sensitive primary stress and weight-sensitive rhythm, but what counts as “heavy” and “light” for stress is different from what counts as “heavy” and “light” for rhythm?

7-12 Questions 1-6 but replace “rhythmic secondary stress” with “polar secondary stress”.

13. If your language has weight-sensitive primary and/or secondary stress (whether polar or rhythmic), does it have trimoraic “superheavy” syllables?
14. If so, does it also have tetramoraic “ultraheavy” syllables?
15. Assuming 13 and 14 are “yes”: What is the maximum weight of a syllable your language? 5 morae? 6 morae? Even heavier?

16. If 13: Does your language permit “stress collisions” —— consecutive stressed syllables in the same word — provided both syllables are at least superheavy?
17. If 13 but not 16, does your language prohibit any word from having more than one superheavy syllable?

18. If 13 or 14: Does your language have a rule that if a word has a trimoraic-or-heavier syllable, its primarily-stressed syllable must be one of those syllables (one tied for heaviest if there are more than one)?
19. If 18, does it also have a rule that all other trimoraic-or-heavier syllables must be at least secondarily stressed?

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Creyeditor
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Re: Stress and rhythm oddities

Post by Creyeditor »

Sorry for being so clueless, but what is polar secondary stress? And what is the difference between primary stress and rhythm? Is rhythm just rhythmic (i.e. alternating) secondary stress?
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eldin raigmore
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Re: Stress and rhythm oddities

Post by eldin raigmore »

Creyeditor wrote:
20 Jun 2020 23:56
Sorry for being so clueless, but what is polar secondary stress? And what is the difference between primary stress and rhythm? Is rhythm just rhythmic (i.e. alternating) secondary stress?
Primary stress is whatever happens to one and only one syllable in every word that has more than one syllable.
Secondary stress is of two kinds; rhythmic and polar.
Rhythmic stress is always called secondary. That means some languages can be said to have secondary stress without having primary stress.
Rhythm may not necessarily be always alternating. Arguably some languages have ternary rhythm instead of binary rhythm. (Not sure everyone believes this!)

If something can happen to more than one syllable in a word, but can never happen to two consecutive syllables, but never NOT happen* to three (or five) consecutive syllables, then that “something” is rhythmic secondary stress.
*(That is, in every three, or four, or five consecutive syllables of the same word, at least one of them must display these phenomena; yet no two consecutive syllables of the same word both display them.)

Most languages have both rhythm and primary stress. The stuff that happens to a primarily stressed syllable usually includes everything that happens to a secondarily stressed syllable and then some.

Polar secondary stress happens in some languages; (but only in languages which also have primary stress!).

If the primarily stressed syllable is always one of, say, the first two (or three?) syllables in a word with enough syllables, then maybe every word with “enough” (maybe two, maybe three) syllables after the primarily-stressed one, will have one and only one secondarily-stressed syllable, and it will always be one of the last two or three syllables.

Or if the primarily stressed syllable is always one of the last two syllables, every word with two or more syllables before the primary stress, has one and only one secondarily-stressed syllable, and it’s always close to the beginning of the word.

If a language has polar secondary stress, it has at most one secondary stress per word, and that’s always at the opposite end of the word from the primary stress, and happens to every word with enough non-primarily-stressed syllables on the long side of the word.

I have never heard of a natlang with both rhythmic secondary stress and polar secondary stress. I started on a conlang with both once.

I do not believe any of the claims that there are natural languages with two-or-more-syllable words that have neither primary stress nor rhythm. I have seen some of the evidence for such claims and found it doubtable, and maybe unconvincing even if true.
But there are languages with only primary stress and no rhythm; and there are languages with only rhythm and no primary stress.

Of course, the way polar secondary stress is defined, it can’t happen unless there’s already primary stress.
So secondary stress without primary stress can’t be polar. If rhythm is the only other kind of secondary stress, then secondary stress without primary stress must be rhythm.
Last edited by eldin raigmore on 23 Jun 2020 16:19, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Stress and rhythm oddities

Post by Pabappa »

Poswa and Pabappa both have mandatory word-initial stress, so I'll reply for Leaper. Leaper uses word tone, where the tonic syllable can be anywhere in the word, but there can be only one tonic syllable no matter the length of the word. There are six word tones, representing four different surface tones on the tonic syllable, and otherwise distinguished by their effects on the unstressed syllables. This means that in monosyllabic words there are only four audibly distinct tones, though the native script still spells all six according to etymology.

I'm going to skip the questions that Im not well developed enough to answer yet, as poetry is far beyond my reach in this language.

1. Does your language have a different stress-and/or-rhythm pattern for native words than for loan-words?
No, but I imagine that foreign stress patterns will be preserved whenever possible. Leaper abuts many languages which have either mandatory initial stress or a preference for word-final stress.

2-3. Does your language have a different stress-and/or-rhythm pattern for nouns than for other parts-of-speech?
In theory no, but the commonest tone patterns for nouns in the nominative case all have penultimate stress, whereas verbs are well-split between ultimate and penultimate. Only a noun can have its tonic syllable more than two syllables back (unless there are clitics I havent added yet).

13-14. If your language has weight-sensitive primary and/or secondary stress (whether polar or rhythmic), does it have trimoraic “superheavy” syllables?
The Gold family languages, including Leaper, are well known for their frequent use of syllables in which a long vowel is followed by a coda consonant. These could be considered superheavy syllables. However, the surface pronunciation features a vowel that is of short duration, distinguished from ordinary closed syllables by pitch rather than duration.

15. Assuming 13 and 14 are “yes”: What is the maximum weight of a syllable your language?
I would argue that the syllable structure is CVC, since no audible lengthening of vowels occurs in closed syllables.

16. If 13: Does your language permit “stress collisions” —— consecutive stressed syllables in the same word — provided both syllables are at least superheavy?
Possibly. Any such words would be etymologically unsound, but the development that made them such occurred more than 4,000 years before the maturation date of the classical Leaper language, and even scholars cannot trace the etymologies of words so far back. New closed syllables developed from the weakening of syllabic consonants in contact with vowels, but it is not certain that these newly developed closed syllables would be able to attract stress in a word where a different syllable already had stress, whether closed or not.

18. If 13 or 14: Does your language have a rule that if a word has a trimoraic-or-heavier syllable, its primarily-stressed syllable must be one of those syllables (one tied for heaviest if there are more than one)?

There is no such rule, but I can't think of any way that a word not obeying this rule would be able to evolve from the sound changes, so it would need to be a loanword.
I'll take the theses, and you can have the thoses.

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Re: Stress and rhythm oddities

Post by Salmoneus »

Creyeditor wrote:
20 Jun 2020 23:56
Sorry for being so clueless, but what is polar secondary stress?
If I may offer a much simpler answer than eldin, as I understand the term...

In a non-lexical stress system, stress allocation is defined relative to either the rightmost or the leftmost edge of the word (or root, or whatever the unit is, let's not get bogged down in defining 'word'...).

In most languages, primary and secondary stress are both defined from the same edge. Polar stress means that they're defined from opposite edges.

[this doesn't, in theory, mean that the two stresses must be 'at opposite ends' of the word, though. If primary stress is on the penultimate syllable, and secondary stress is on the second syllable, that's polar stress - but in bisyllables, it means that the two stresses are adjacent (the right-edge stress being to the left of the left-edge stress!), and in trisyllables they'll actually coincide. So you can easily set up rules where the stresses are close together. Similarly, if most of your words have three or four syllables, and your primary stress is antepenultimate but your secondary stress is initial, most words will have the two stresses adjacent or coincident, near the beginning of the word.]

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eldin raigmore
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Re: Stress and rhythm oddities

Post by eldin raigmore »

“Sal” wrote: In a non-lexical stress system, stress allocation is defined relative to either the rightmost or the leftmost edge of the word (or root, or whatever the unit is, let's not get bogged down in defining 'word'...).

In most languages, primary and secondary stress are both defined from the same edge. Polar stress means that they're defined from opposite edges.
Edit: That; and, if secondary stress is polar, there’s never more than one secondary stress per word.
Rhythm always allows more than one secondary stress per long-enough word.

Extra-credit questions inspired by Sal’s comment.
20. How are the rhythmic secondary-stress locations calculated in your language? (Assuming it has rhythm and also primary stress.)
a. From “left” to “right” no matter where the primary stress is located?
b. From “right” to “left” no matter where the primary stress is located?
c. From the left edge to the primary stress, and from the right edge to the primary stress? (I.e. from the edges inward?)
d. From the primary stress to the left edge, and from the primary stress to the right edge? (I.e. from the primary stress outward?)

{c and d are only possible if the primary stress can be a little distant from both edges of the word.)

.....
The following question must be answered “a” for question 20 to be relevant.
21. Which of the following best describes the algorithm by which primary stress and secondary stress is best calculated in your language?
a. Primary stress is assigned first; then that information is used to assign secondary stress.
b. First decide which syllables will get some kind of stress. Then use that information to decide which one of those syllables will be primarily stressed; the other stressed syllable(s) will be secondarily stressed.

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Re: Stress and rhythm oddities

Post by Creyeditor »

eldin raigmore wrote:
21 Jun 2020 00:14
Creyeditor wrote:
20 Jun 2020 23:56
Sorry for being so clueless, but what is polar secondary stress? And what is the difference between primary stress and rhythm? Is rhythm just rhythmic (i.e. alternating) secondary stress?
[very good explanation]
Salmoneus wrote:
21 Jun 2020 01:40
[also a very good explanation]
Aha, I had actually heard of rhythm as rhythmic stress and of polar secondary stress as dual stress, but your terminology is at least as clear if not clearer. I always found dual stress vs. secondary stress confusing, tbh.
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Re: Stress and rhythm oddities

Post by Reyzadren »

1. No, but it can for disambiguation or if one insists on preserving the stress values of borrowed words.
2. No.
3. No.

4~6. No.
7~12. No.
13~15. No.

16. Theoretically no, but practically one may unstress any stressed syllable and it would mostly still work, but stressing unstressed syllables, even consecutive ones, is dangerous because it is only allowed if it does not cause upflow, which would conflict with stress rules.
17. No.

18~19. No.

20. a.
21. a.
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eldin raigmore
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Re: Stress and rhythm oddities

Post by eldin raigmore »

“Reyzadren” wrote: but stressing unstressed syllables, even consecutive ones, is dangerous because it is only allowed if it does not cause upflow, which would conflict with stress rules.
What’s upflow?
What stress rules does it conflict with?
How does it conflict?
How would stressing unstressed syllables, or de-stressing stressed ones, cause upflow?

———

This is a quadruple-good post. It made me ask four questions!

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Re: Stress and rhythm oddities

Post by Reyzadren »

^Upflow happens when an unstressed syllable proceeds to a stressed syllable in a word.

All griuskant words have initial stress. Hence, if stress occurs elsewhere in the word, it would be perceived as a start of a new word, which wouldn't be what is intended. Ie, all words should have a downflow.

Here is an example. Suppose we have this word /'asəritɔnum/.
These alternate pronunciations are acceptable: /'a'səritɔnum/ /'a'sə'ritɔnum/ /'a'sə'ri'tɔnum/
However, these are not allowed: /a'səritɔnum/ /asə'ritɔnum/ /asəritɔ'num/ /a'səri'tɔnum/
These wrong pronunciations conflict with stress rules because they would be perceived as 2 words, or in the last situation as 3 words!

Stressing unstressed syllables causes upflow, unless the previous syllable is also stressed.
De-stressing never causes upflow.
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Re: Stress and rhythm oddities

Post by Zythros Jubi »

1. Yes. In Eskyl, all words are usually initially stressed; however, loanwords of Latin/Romance origin are often stressed on penult or antepenult if ending in a vowel, and on the final syllable if ending in a consonant (i.e. the vowel has been dropped).
2. Yes. For nouns, compound are stringed together like most Germanic languages, Finnish and Hungarian. There are in general a primary and a secondary accent.
3. No.
4. No.
5. No.
6. No.
7-12. No.
13. Not a mora-timed language
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