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NASALIZATION: A TRADITIONAL CHARACTERISTIC IN THE NORTHWESTERN DIALECTS

Francis D. M. Dow
Journal of Chinese Linguistics
Vol. 2, No. 2 (MAY 1974), pp. 180-185
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/23752910
Page Count: 6
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
NASALIZATION: A TRADITIONAL CHARACTERISTIC IN THE NORTHWESTERN DIALECTS
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Abstract

Nasalization is one of the phonetic characteristics in northwestern Chinese dialects. As evidence shows, this phenomenon can be traced back to as early as the middle of the 7th century A.D. In other words, nasalization which is derived from finals ending /-n/ and /-ŋ/ is a traditional phonetic characteristic in the northwestern dialects rather than a 'historical change which took place in the modern period' as suggested by Luo Chang-pei (Luo 1933:167). Thus it is unreliable, without any backing from sources, to work out a formula for explaining the historical change of speech sound merely by referring to the language of the Qieyun as a 'mother language of nearly all modern dialects' or 'Changan dialect' as suggested by B. Karlgren (Karlgren 1923:16, 1964:3).

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