name (kite_head) wrote in linguaphiles,
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kite_head
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Spanish: verbal morphology and phonology

1. What makes the nosotros form so special? For example, in the imperfect, it always has an accent. There are also the so-called "boot verbs" because the nosotros form is, well, different (i.e. it does not observe stem changes), and by excluding it, the other 5 forms form, well,a boot. How did this form evolve to be so unique?

2. On the preterite: I just noticed that verbs that follow the regular pattern in the preterite follow this pattern for 2nd person singular:

Take the 2nd person singular in the present (tu) and add -te. For example:

hablar: (present tense) tu hablas
preterite of hablar: tu hablaste

Can anyone elaborate on this?

3. Also, in terms of teaching verbs, how common is it to teach vosotros? I am working in a Spanish classroom that does not teach vosotros, but talking to others, it does sound like some high schools in my area do use it ( I can think of at least 2 people, 1 at my site): one of them is a Spaniard, the other I cannot quite explain why she would use it. So, to teach or not to teach vosotros?

4. I have observed the following two errors native/heritage speakers tend to make with verbs:
tu form (preterite) (using the same verb I used in #2): instead of hablaste, hablastes; basically just adding an"s" to the end.

and in the 3rd person plural form (ellos): dijieron instead of dijeron. My understanding/ guess on the ellos form is that because of how Spanish verbs evolved from Latin verbs, dijieron would be part of the evolution process and those speakers simply didn't do the next step in language change. Does that make sense? Am I anywhere near what is going on?

5. Finally, in English there are the words "salmon" and "almond." In the area that I live in (Central Valley of California) most native English speakers do not pronounce the "l" so it sounds more like "samon" and "amond." I haven't taken the time to study this, but I have noticed that there are segments of the population that do pronounce the "l" and casual observations indicate those that do are people that have exposure to Spanish, because in Spanish "salmon" does say the "l" as well as in "almiendra" (almond). Is that anywhere close? Is it worth investigating? If so, any tips on how to proceed?

I know that is a lot, and I am sorry if I phrased anything poorly, but when these questions formed in my head, this was the first place I thought to ask. So, thanks again.
Tags: latin, phonology, pronunciation, spanish, verb conjugation
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