Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Comparing tones among some Southwestern Tai languages

The numbers will be used to represent level of pitch. Chao's digits.
5 - highest
4 - high
3 - mid
2 - low
1 - lowest

51 - falling tone. Start out highest(5) then falls to lowest(1).
15 - rising tone. Start out lowest(1) then falls to highest(5).

Standard Thai
ขา [kʰaː24] 'leg'
ข่า [kʰaː21] 'galangal'
ข้า [kʰaː51] 'slave'
คา [kʰaː33] 'stuck'
ค่า [kʰaː51] 'value'
ค้า [kʰaː45] 'to trade'

 Vientiane Lao
[kʰaː14] 'leg'
[kʰaː33] 'galangal'
[kʰaː31] 'slave'
[kʰaː34] 'stuck'
[kʰaː33] 'value'
[kʰaː51] 'to trade'

Northern Thai -Chiang Mai (Gedney)
[kʰaː24] 'leg'
[kʰaː11] 'galangal'
[kʰaː53] 'slave'
[kaː44] 'stuck'
[kaː51] 'value'
[kaː454] 'to trade'


[kʰaː24] 'leg'
[kʰaː11] 'galangal'
[kʰaː32] 'slave'
[kaː55] 'stuck'
[kaː32] 'value'
[kaː51] 'to trade' (relatively shorter than other tones)

Tai Lue - Sipsongpanna (Gedney)
[kʰaː55] 'leg'
[kʰaː12] 'galangal'
[kʰaː11] 'slave'
[kaː21] 'stuck'
[kaː33] 'value'
[kaː31] 'to trade'

Tai Dam(Gedney)
[kʰaː22] 'leg'
[kʰaː45] 'galangal'
[kʰaː21] 'slave'
[kaː55] 'stuck'
[kaː44] 'value'
[kaː31] 'to trade'

Gedney, William J., and Thomas J. Hudak. William J. Gedney's Tai Dialect Studies: Glossaries, Texts, and Translations. Ann Arbor, MI: Center for South and Southeast Asian Studies, The University of Michigan, 1997. Print.

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