Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Show Summary Details
More options …

Poznan Studies in Contemporary Linguistics

Editor-in-Chief: Dziubalska-Kolaczyk, Katarzyna


IMPACT FACTOR 2018: 0.347

CiteScore 2018: 0.56

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2018: 0.252
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2018: 0.520

Online
ISSN
1897-7499
See all formats and pricing
More options …
Volume 53, Issue 3

Issues

Vowel shortening in Persian: A phonological analysis

Aliyeh K.Z. Kambuziya / Amir Ghorbanpour / Nader Mahdipour
Published Online: 2017-10-19 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/psicl-2017-0014

Abstract

This study is a phonological analysis of the process of vowel shortening in Persian. The aim was to find out whether there are any rules governing the different cases of vowel shortening in simple and complex words of formal standard Persian, and to analyse the conditions under which the long vowels /a, i, u/ change into the corresponding short vowels /æ, e, o/. In doing so, data were gathered from a 75000-word contemporary dictionary of Persian, and all the instances undergoing vowel shortening were extracted. Analysing the data showed that the change of /a/ into [æ] is the most frequent type of vowel shortening in Persian. In addition, it turned out that vowel shortening rarely occurs inside simple words in the formal standard form of the language (only in 35 entries out of 519 words in total; i.e. 6.7%); while on the contrary, in complex words it happens quite frequently. Furthermore, regarding the phonemic environment in which vowels undergo shortening, it was found that vowel shortening is most frequent before the glottal consonant /h/, next frequent before nasals /n/ and /m/, and then before /r/. The process also occurs rather frequently in morpheme-final positions in affixation. Lastly, it turns out that another important factor in vowel shortening is the syllable structure of the word; as the super-heavy and ultra-heavy syllables of Persian tend to lose one mora and become lighter in certain positions in the word.

Keywords: Vowel shortening; vowel length; syllable weight; Persian

References

  • Anvari, H. 2006. Farhang-e Bozorg-e Sokhan [Comprehensive dictionary of Sokhan]. Tehran: Sokhan.Google Scholar

  • Chomsky, N. and M. Halle. 1968. The sound pattern of English. New York: Harper & Row.Google Scholar

  • Hayes, B. 1989. “Compensatory lengthening in moraic phonology”. Linguistic Inquiry 20. 253–307.Google Scholar

  • Kambuziya, A.K.Z. 2007. Vajshenasi: Rouykardha-ye Gha’ede-bonyad [Phonology: Rule-based approaches]. Tehran: Samt.Google Scholar

  • Kambuziya, A.K.Z. and B. Hadian. 2010. “Tabaghat-e tabiee dar vakeha-ye zaban-e farsi” [Natural classes in Persian vowels]. Persian Literature and Language Research 15. 117–144.Google Scholar

  • Lazard, G. 1957. Grammaire du Persan Contemporain. Paris: Klincksieck.Google Scholar

  • Miller, C. 2012. “Variation in Persian vowel systems”. Orientalia Suecana 61. 156–169.Google Scholar

  • Natel Khanlari, P. 1958. Vazn-e She’r-e Farsi [Metrics of Persian poetry]. (Reprinted in 1994.) Tehran: Toos Publications.Google Scholar

  • Navidi Baghi, S. 2013 Barresi-e Vajarayi-e Vazhegan-e Basit-e Chand Hejayi dar Zaban-e Farsi [A phonotactic study of Persian polysyllabic simple words]. (MA thesis, Tarbiat Modarres University, Tehran.)Google Scholar

  • Roca, I. and W. Johnson. 1999. A course in phonology. Oxford: Blackwell.Google Scholar

  • Sadeghi, A.A. 1978. Takvin-e zaban-e Farsi [The evolution of the Persian language]. Tehran: Azad University.Google Scholar

  • Sadeghi, A.A. 2001. “Tahavol-e pasvand-e hasel masdar az pahlavi be farsi” [The evolution of abstract suffix from Pahlavi to Persian]. Masa’el-e Tarikhi-e Zaban-e Farsi [Historical issues of Persian]. Tehran: Sokhan.Google Scholar

  • Samareh, Y. 1999. Avashenasi-e Zaban-e Farsi: Avaha va Sakht-e Avayi-e Heja [The phonetics of Persian: Sounds and phonetic structure of syllable]. (2nd ed.) Tehran: Iran University Pulishers.Google Scholar

  • Tabibzadeh, O. 2008. “Keshesh dar dastgah-e vake’i-e zaban-e farsi” [Length in the vowel system of Persian]. Presented at the Seventh Conference of Linguistics, Allameh Tabatabaei University, Tehran.Google Scholar

  • Toosarvandani, M.D. 2004. “Vowel length in modern Farsi”. JRAS 14(3). 241–251.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Watson, J.C.E. 1999. “The syllable and syllabification in modern spoken Arabic”. In: van der Hulst, H. and N.A. Ritter (eds.), The syllable: Views and facts. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter. 501–525.Google Scholar

About the article

Published Online: 2017-10-19

Published in Print: 2017-10-26


Citation Information: Poznan Studies in Contemporary Linguistics, Volume 53, Issue 3, Pages 373–397, ISSN (Online) 1897-7499, ISSN (Print) 0137-2459, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/psicl-2017-0014.

Export Citation

© 2017 Faculty of English, Adam Mickiewicz University, Poznań, Poland.Get Permission

Citing Articles

Here you can find all Crossref-listed publications in which this article is cited. If you would like to receive automatic email messages as soon as this article is cited in other publications, simply activate the “Citation Alert” on the top of this page.

[1]
Amir Ghorbanpour, Aliyeh K. Z. Kambuziya, Mohammad Dabir-Moghaddam, and Ferdows Agha-Golzadeh
Journal of Universal Language, 2019, Volume 20, Number 2, Page 95
[2]
Amir Ghorbanpour, Aliyeh K. Z. Kambuziya, Mohammad Dabir-Moghaddam, and Ferdows Agha-Golzadeh
Acta Linguistica Academica, 2019, Volume 66, Number 1, Page 69

Comments (0)

Please log in or register to comment.
Log in