Work Papers of the Summer Institute of Linguistics, University of North Dakota Session




From the introduction: "[M]y main objective is to provide a comprehensive understanding of Seri syllable structure and facts which are relevant to it. In some cases I argue that certain data support a particular structure over another, but in some cases alternative treatments may also be compatible with the facts. These facts are relevant to a number of issues, including the sonority hierarchy, the internal structure of syllables (especially the nucleus), the representation of long vowels, the representation of round consonants, the CV tier, the relationship of stress to syllabification, and the distinction between the syllable structure of inflected words and uninflected words.

"In the first several sections below I discuss primarily patterns which can be found in monomorphemic words. The syllable structure of such words, while more complex than many other languages, is still relatively restricted. Sect. 7 summarizes these facts. In Sect. 8 I take up inflected words. Unlike many other languages where inflected words generally have the same syllable structure as uninflected words, in Seri these derived words have radically different syllables. Affixation is responsible for all four-segment onsets and codas, and for almost all three-segment onsets described in previous studies. Various constraints and restrictions which are developed for uninflected words turn out to be irrelevant."

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