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Final Consonant Clusters in Majorcan Catalan Verbs: The Resolution of Sonority Sequence Principle Violations through Cluster Simplification
Mark Amengual and Cynthia P. Blanco
91-99 (complete paper or proceedings contents)


Majorcan Catalan (MC) lacks an overt inflectional morpheme encoding a person or number feature for first person singular present indicative verb forms, while other Catalan dialects include an explicit morpheme (e.g., /u/, /o/, /e/, or /i/). Therefore, many MC verbs end with the consonants of the verb root with no further vowel, and these consonant sequences violate the syllable structure restrictions imposed by the Sonority Sequence Principle (SSP). In the present study, MC speakers translated Spanish sentences into MC. The results indicate that both Spanish-dominant and Catalan-dominant speakers consistently reduce clusters that violate the SSP, with the rate of simplification at 62.4%. The rate of simplification is even higher when the cluster is followed by a word beginning with a consonant (76.7%). Many linguistic factors mitigate the degree to which speakers simplify clusters, such as the following phonological context and number of consonants in the cluster. Differing considerably from previously reported data, the present results reveal that Majorcan Catalan speakers resolve SSP violations through cluster simplification.

Published in

Selected Proceedings of the 4th Conference on Laboratory Approaches to Spanish Phonology
edited by Marta Ortega-Llebaria
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Printed edition: $205.00