Language name: JAPANESE
UPSID number: 2171
Alternate name(s):
Classification: Ural-Altaic, Japanese
This language has 20 segments
Its Frequency index is 0.479600887 (average percentage of segments; 0.1: many very rare segments; 0.39: average; 0.7: many common segments)
The language has these sounds: b k g m j w h i E a uu O p tD dD sD zD nD nU r[
Comment: Japanese is spoken primarily in Japan. All vowels may appear long, as may all obstruents - long vowels accent placement may be on either element. Shibatani (1990) reports final nasals as uvulars, varying with the nasalized counterpart of the preceding vowel. /t, d, s, z/ are replaced by palato-alveolar affricates or fricatives before /i, e/. /t, d/ are [ts, dz] before /u/. Some analyses regard these sibilant variants as phonemic because of a residue of problematic cases. Bloch (1950) and Horne (1963) both report that /t, d, n, s/ are dental before /a/; this variant is taken as underlying.
Source(s): Bloch, B. 1950. Studies in colloquial Japanese, IV: Phonemics. Language 26: 86-125.
Jorden, E.H. 1963. Beginning Japanese, Part I. Yale University Press, New Haven.
Martin, S.E. 1952. Morphophonemics of Standard Colloquial Japanese (Language Dissertation 47). Linguistic Society of America, Baltimore.
Shibatani, M. 1990. The languages of Japan. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.

Report a bug