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SFB 471: Variation and Evolution in the Lexicon

Project A–23:
Variation and morphophonological change
in West Germanic


Project A-23 is concerned with synchronic and diachronic aspects of West Germanic (morpho)phonological structures with particular reference to quantity contrast in Upper German dialects. We have two related objectives: the phonological system of quantity as reflected in the morphophonological alternations and the phonetic manifestation of this system as reflected in detailed phonetic cues interacting with the phonological intonational system. We intend to pursue these objectives with respect to (a) the historical morphophonological development and (b) phonetic and intonational analyses, both with special reference to the quantity contrasts.  Under (a) we will provide a detailed account of the morphophonological system of Old Alemannic based on Notker’s manuscripts, in comparison with the synchronic High Alemannic system. In (b) we determine the role of FØ in the phonemic distinction between singletons and geminates in different word and phrase positions and the perceptual consequences.

state of the art

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