January 22nd, 2008

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  • kasak

(no subject)

Hello, everyone!

I have a question for all those students of Brazilian Portuguese phonology out there! (Because I know there's millions of you.)

My Portuguese teacher (who is from Sao Paulo) tells me that the /r/ in each of these words is different.

1) rato, rua, carro, genro, correr
2) barato, caro, direita, garoto, marido
3) jogar, porta, perto, norte, certo
4) quatro, braço, fraco, bruto, fruta

In 1, I can definitely hear a [x] sound, though sometimes she'll over pronounce it to stress it and it'll be like a [ʁ]. In 2, it is a clear flap, [ɾ]. However, when she pronounces 3 and 4, they all are pronounced like [ɾ], yet she maintains that they are different. I have sharp enough ears to know an alveolar flap when I hear one! Are 3 and 4 normally pronounced differently in other parts of Brazil that maybe she isn't accustomed to pronouncining? Or is this something far more subtle going on?

Any advice would be appreciated.

(PS- Please, no Wikipedia or Google linking. If that had answered my question to begin with, I wouldn't be here. Thank you!)

Chinese phrase to mention fish and seafood allergies?

My bf and I ordered in some Chinese tonight and one of the things we ordered was a "minced meat with noodles" dish which I didn't realise at first contained some sort of fish sauce (I'm assuming oyster sauce). I wouldn't have thought of that, and I have a friend who is deathly allergic to fish. Now for us it's no big deal, but if I had her over I'd want to know if anything has a seafood based sauce like that.

Now she's had problems in the past telling Chinese-speaking order-takers at a Chinese restaurant "No fish or seafood. I'm allergic if I eat fish or seafood it will kill me." only to receive an order with EXTRA shrimp. :/

So is there an easy phrase in Chinese we could say just to reinforce the message? Pinyin or something like that preferred, since I can't read Chinese symbols.

x-posted to linguaphiles and translators
  • Current Mood
    curious curious

(no subject)

Hi everyone! 
Someone brought me this napkin, and we've been thinking hard ever since: WHAT LANGUAGE IS THIS? 
Thanks in advance, just  very-very curious :)      (for larger version please click on the image)

Art: Martine
  • eonii

(no subject)

Question. :]

In portuguese I always read that the o makes a sound either like that in "boot" or like that in "low" and that all the accents mean is where you put the stress.

But I often here nós pronounced like "nois" . . . Is there a rule that this is based on, or is it just a quirk?
  • tisoi


My brother is in the fourth grade and he asked me for some help with his phonology, I mean, spelling homework.

At first glance, I was thinking that it'd be cool if IPA were used instead of this nonstandard phonetic notation systme. But then again, I wonder if it would be feasible (would it?).

But also, I noticed that he could run into some problems.

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The problems have to do with his accent; he's caught-cot merged. So he was asking me where false goes while jaw, sauce, and dawn were in the second group. He said that the /ôr/ words do not sound like the /ô/ words.

I pointed out to him that his friends, being Pacific Northwesterners, may pronounce roof with the short "oo" (i.e., "rough") since many people, including him, say the long version. But since those sounds are under the same group, they wouldn't get points taken off.

For those of you English speakers, particularly in North America, what do you think could pose problems for fourth graders in your region? And how would "dairy" be pronounced in unmerged Mary-merry-marry accents?
  • wuglet

Question concerning Slavic language, possibly insult

Hello dear linguaphiles,

I have a question concerning a short sentence in a Slavic language, I guess it is Czech? But I don't know fur sure. It is Polish, thank you! :)

Context: I play this little time wasting game, Duels. Right now I had my very first tournament victory, and my opponent sent me a message which is... not very polite. I answered in a rather calm fashion, I think, and got a little snippet in Czech(?) Polish back.

Could you please tell me what he said?

In case it is offensive (and because it's a laaarge picture), I put the screenshot behind a cut.

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I hope I didn't make a mistake in my Finnish reply, I've had my last Finnish class two years ago... ;)

EDIT: Thank you very much, you made my day!
  • Current Mood
    amused amused
Osaka, fgsfds

(no subject)

I bring you another Russian vs. English clash!

If you know Russian, check out the comments here. I'm trying to hold back the tide of insanity there, but phonetics is not really my field of expertise, so feel free to correct me if I'm wrong.

For those of you who can't read Russian, here's a quick summary of what went on:
A user posts an entry wondering how children of English speakers learn to pronounce words and spell them. Apparently, it's not by reading and listening, since in English there isn't any correlation between what's written and how it's pronounced. Unlike, of course, Russian, where everything is written exactly as it is spoken.

I obviously object and end up in a discussion with a person, who ends up claiming that /ʌ/ and /o/ are allophones.
The author of the entry itself then comes claiming that it is impossible to separate English words into syllables.
A third commenter says the author is right about there being no connection between pronunciation and spelling because English has diphthongs and digraphs, while Russian doesn't. When I point out the use of ь and ъ in digraphs, he says that it's "completely different thing".
  • Current Mood

Ukrainian Help

Can anyone who speaks Ukrainian help me proofread this sentence? It should say, "I ♥ shoes." I am not sure if it's formal/informal or anything like that. I just need to know if it is correct.

Я обожаю ♥ взуття

I had to type that out from the PDF file, so I am not sure if I did it right.