Phonology exercises

Phonological Rules

Phonological rules are usually written in the following form:

A -> B / C __ D

In such rules, A is said to be the affected segment, B is the change, and C and D constitute the context or environment. CAD constittutes the structural description (SD) of the rule, and CBD constitutes the structural change (SC).

Task: State what the following rules do in plain English:

N.B. [-syl] = consonant, [+syl] = vowel

a. [+nas] -> / [+syl] __ #

b. [+syl ] -> [-syl] / __ [+syl]


c. -> [+syl ] / [+strident]+ __ [-sonorant]

          [+high]  [+coronal]      [+coronal]
          [-back ]

d. [-sonorant ] -> [-back] / __ [+syl ]

    [-continuant]                 [-back ]
    [-labial     ]                 [+high]

e. V -> [+stress] / __ C0 V C0 V C0 #

Help: Some conventional symbols:

the null set, e.g. -> B / C __ D "insert B between C and D."

                     A ->  / C __ D   "delete A between C and D."

  1. word boundary

+ morpheme boundary

C [-syllabic] segment (consonant)

V [+syllabic] segment (vowel)

V stressed vowel

C0 zero or more [-syllabic] segments

: lengthened vowel

o syllable (boundary)