Proceedings of the Xth Conference, Helsinki 2008
Edited By Martti Vainio, Reijo Aulanko and Olli Aaltonen
21. The characteristics of stød in Livonian 217
THE CHARACTERISTICS OF STØD IN LIVONIAN Pire Teras Tuuli Tuisk 1 Introduction The current paper presents results of our study on Livonian stød. Livonian is the southernmost Finnic language, spoken in Latvia. Being a highly endangered language, Livonian is the mother tongue of fewer than 10 people. As a result of a revitalisation movement nowadays more ethnic Livonians speak it as a second language. The present paper deals with the Courland Livonian spoken on the Livonian Coast. The prosodic features of Livonian are as follows: 1) primary stress is fixed, falling on the first syllable of a word; 2) there is a phonological opposition of short and long phoneme duration in the primary stressed syllable; the second syllable vowel in words with a short first syllable is half-long, and with a long first syllable half-long or short (the syllable ratios are 0.5–0.7, 1.0–1.8, and 2.4– 3.2 respectively) (Lehiste et al., 2008); 3) there is a tone opposition in the primary stressed syllable. The quantity system of Livonian has similarities with that of Estonian (cf. Lehiste, 1960, 1997), while the tonal system is similar to that of Latvian. Like Latvian, Livonian uses stød as one of its prosodic features (cf. Markusa, 1991). Words pronounced with stød are often referred to as words with broken tone, and words without stød as words with plain or rising tone. Stød (which is usually marked with an apostrophe) can appear only in a long stressed syllable with...
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