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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter March 10, 2010

On the Change of Word Stress in the History of German

  • Augustin Speyer
From the journal

Word stress in German is usually thought of as following the Germanic stress pattern (main stress on first stem syllable); quasi-monomorphemic words like Forélle or Holúnder suggest, however, that Modern German follows a Latinate stress pattern (last syllable extrametrical; stress on the penultima or the antepenultima, depending on weight of the second-to-last syllable). The change in stress pattern occurred in the 16th and 17th century, judging from evidence of metrical texts, due to a heavy influx of Latin and Romance loan words in this period, which followed the Latinate stress pattern and were taken as sample for the stressing of monomorphemic words longer than two syllables.

Published Online: 2010-03-10
Published in Print: 2009-November
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