Mûtsipsa'/Sound changes

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Original phoneme inventory

  • Stops /p, t, d, k, g, ʔ/
  • Affricates /ts dz/
  • Fricatives /s, ħ/
  • Nasals /m, n/
  • Approximants /w, j/
  • Vowels: /i, a, u/

Sound changes


ħu, ħa > hu, ha
ħi > xi

Tone-dependent lengthening or raising:

i u a > i: u: e / first vowel in HH word

Semi-vowel and diphthong shifts:

 a  i  u  aj  uj  aw  iw
wa wi wu waj wuj waw wiw
ja ji ju jaj juj jaw jiw


 a  i  u   e   û   o   y
 o  y uu  we  wû  wo  yy
 e ii  û   e   û  jo  iy

(The above is in Mûtsipsa' orthography, so û = /ɯ/, and a doubled vowel indicates lengthening)

The above also only shows what happens to semi-vowel combinations and diphthongs with the old vowels. What about those vowels that arose because of HH conditions (e.g. /e/ and /i:/)? Well:

 e  ii  uu  ej  uuj  ew  iiw
we wii wuu wej wuuj wew wiiw
je jii juu jej juuj jew jiiw


 e  ii  uu  ej   ûû   y  yy
we wii wuu  yj   ûû  yy  yy
je jii juu  ij   ûû  iy  iy

Plosive chain shift:

p t k ʔ > f s x h / V_V
d g > t k / V_V


m > w / V_V
m > Ø / _#

Loss or centralisation or shortening of final vowels:

i y u û a > Ø / _#
e o > a / _#
V: > V / _#

Vowel syncope:

V[+short] > Ø / #C₁_C₂V (where C₁ is less sonorous than C₂, e.g. kexa > kxa, sûjo > sjo)


d g > t k / adjacent to voiceless consonants
dz > ts

Hiatus resolution:

Ø > ʔ / V_V

Glottal cluster simplification:

ʔ > Ø / _C
ʔ > Ø / C_#


any exactly reduplicated syllables collapse together (e.g. tatani > tani, xixitswa > xitswa)

More glottal cluster simplification:

Ch > C / _# (only on roots, not suffixes)

See also