In phonetics, preaspiration (sometimes spelled pre-aspiration)Template:Sfnp is a period of voicelessness or aspiration preceding the closure of a voiceless obstruent,Template:Sfnp basically equivalent to an Template:IPA-like sound preceding the obstruent. In other words, when an obstruent is preaspirated, the glottis is opened for some time before the obstruent closure.Template:Sfnp To mark preaspiration using the International Phonetic Alphabet, the diacritic for regular aspiration, Template:Angbr IPA, can be placed before the preaspirated consonant. However, Template:HarvcoltxtTemplate:Page missing prefer to use a simple cluster notation, e.g. Template:Angbr IPA instead of Template:Angbr IPA.
Preaspiration is comparatively uncommon across languages of the world,Template:Sfnp and is claimed by some to not be phonemically contrastive in any language.Template:Sfnp Template:Harvcoltxt note that, at least in the case of Icelandic, preaspirated stops have a longer duration of aspiration than normally aspirated (post-aspirated) stops, comparable to clusters of Template:IPA+consonant in languages with such clusters. As a result, they view preaspiration as purely a distributional feature, indistinguishable phonetically and phonologically from clusters with Template:IPA, and prefer to notate preaspirated stops as clusters, e.g. Icelandic kappi Template:IPA "hero" rather than Template:IPA.
A distinction is often made between so-called normative and non-normative preaspiration: in a language with normative preaspiration of certain voiceless obstruents, the preaspiration is obligatory even though it is not a distinctive feature; in a language with non-normative preaspiration, the preaspiration can be phonetically structured for those who use it, but it is non-obligatory, and may not appear with all speakers.Template:SfnpTemplate:Sfnp Preaspirated consonants are typically in free variation with spirant-stop clusters, though they may also have a relationship (synchronically and diachronically) with long vowels or Template:IPA-stop clusters.Template:Sfnp
Preaspiration can take a number of different forms; while the most usual is glottal friction (an Template:IPA-like sound), the precise phonetic quality can be affected by the obstruent or the preceding vowel, becoming for example Template:IPA after close vowels;Template:Sfnp other potential realizations include Template:IPATemplate:Sfnp and even Template:IPA.Template:Sfnp
Preaspiration is very unstable both synchronically and diachronically and is often replaced by a fricative or by a lengthening of the preceding vowel.Template:Sfnp
Preaspiration is perhaps best known from North Germanic languages, most prominently in Icelandic and Faroese, but also some dialects of Norwegian and Swedish. It is also a prominent feature of Scottish Gaelic. The presence of preaspiration in Gaelic has been attributed to North Germanic influence.Template:Sfnp Within Northwestern Europe preaspiration is furthermore found in most Sami languages, except Inari Sami where it has been replaced by postaspiration.Template:Sfnp The historical relationship between preaspiration in Sami and North Germanic is disputed: there is general agreement of a connection, but not on whether it represents Sami influence in North Germanic,Template:Sfnp Template:Sfnp North Germanic influence in SamiTemplate:Sfnp or parallel substrate influence in both languages.Template:Sfnp
Elsewhere in the world, preaspiration occurs in Halh Mongolian and in several American Indian languages, including dialects of Cree, Ojibwe, Fox, Miami-Illinois, HopiTemplate:SfnpTemplate:SfnpTemplate:SfnpTemplate:Sfnp and Purepecha.
- klappa Template:IPA-fo, 'clap'
- hattur Template:IPA-fo, 'hat'
- takka Template:IPA-fo, 'thank'
- søkkja Template:IPA-fo, 'sink' (transitive)
- apa Template:IPA-fo, 'ape', but: vípa Template:IPA-fo, 'northern lapwing'
- eta Template:IPA-fo, 'eat', but: hiti Template:IPA-fo, 'heat'
- vøka Template:IPA-fo, 'wake', but: húka Template:IPA-fo, to 'squat'
- høkja Template:IPA-fo, 'crutch', but: vitja Template:IPA-fo, to 'visit'
- Template:IPA-xx - 'fish'
- Template:IPA-xx - 'a sore'
- Template:IPA-xx - 'small'
- Template:IPA-xx - 'stubble'
Preaspiration in the Sami languages occurs on word-medial voiceless stops and affricates of all places of articulation available: Template:IPA. In the Western Sami languages (Southern, Ume, Pite, Lule and Northern) as well as Skolt Sami, preaspiration affects both long and half-long consonants; in most Eastern Sami languages (Akkala, Kildin and Ter) only fully long consonants are preaspirated. This likely represents two waves of innovation: an early preaspiration of long consonants dating back to Proto-Sami, followed by a secondary preaspiration of half-long consonants that originated in the Western Sami area and spread eastwards to Skolt Sami.Template:Sfnp
In several Sami languages, preaspirated stops/affricates contrast with lax voiceless stops, either due to denasalization of earlier clusters (e.g. *nt > Template:IPA) or in connection to consonant gradation.
In Scottish Gaelic, however, due to the historical loss of voiced stops preaspiration is phonemic in medial and final positions after stressed vowels.Template:Sfnp
Its strength varies from area to area and can manifest itself as Template:IPA or Template:IPA or in areas with strong preaspiration as Template:IPA or Template:IPA. The occurrence of preaspiration follows a hierarchy of c > t > p; i.e. if a dialect has preaspiration with p, it will also have it in the other places of articulation. Preaspiration manifests itself as follows:
- Area 1 as Template:IPA and Template:IPA
- Area 2 as Template:IPA and Template:IPA
- Area 3 as Template:IPA and Template:IPA
- Area 4 as Template:IPA
- Area 5 as Template:IPA and Template:IPA (no preaspiration of t and p)
- Area 6 no preaspiration
There are numerous minimal pairs:
- glag Template:IPA-gd "clock" vs glac Template:IPA-gd "grab" (v.)
- ad Template:IPA-gd "hat" vs at Template:IPA-gd "boil" (n.)
- leag Template:IPA-gd "throw down" vs leac Template:IPA-gd "flagstone"
- aba Template:IPA-gd "abbot" vs apa Template:IPA-gd "ape" (n.)
Although distinguishing preaspirated consonants from clusters of /Template:IPAlink/ and a voiceless consonant can be difficult, the reverse does not hold: there are numerous languages such as Arabic or Finnish where such clusters are unanimously considered to constitute consonant clusters.
- Bandle, Oskar; Widmark, Gun (2002). The Nordic Languages: An International Handbook of the History of the North Germanic Languages. 2. ISBN 9783110171495.
- Borgstrøm, Carl (1940). The Dialects of the Outer Hebrides.
- Kusmenko, Jurij (2008). Der samische Einfluss auf die skandinavischen Sprachen. Beitrag zur nordgermanischen Sprachgeschichte. Berlin.
- Sammallahti, Pekka (1998). The Saami Languages: An Introduction. Davvi Girji.