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SIL Electronic Working Papers 2007-007

More Universals of Tone

Author  Cahill, Michael

This paper reviews some “tone universals” that were previously proposed, and proposes three additional cross-linguistic tonal tendencies: (a) floating tones migrate rightward, (b) words with all-Low tones are dispreferred, and (c) a HLH phonetic sequence is dispreferred. These are violated often enough so that the term "universal" is overly ambitious, but they occur across a wide areal and genetic variety of languages, so a complete typology of tone should include and account for these.

  More Universals of Tone
Published  2007
Language  Konni [kma]
Country  Ghana
Subjects  Optimality theory
Keywords  Tone; Optimality theory