Abstract

Wuvulu, a member of the Admiralty branch of the Oceanic subgroup of Austronesian languages, has been reported in earlier publications as having as many as four allophones of the velar stop /k/, all of which appeared to be in free variation. It is now clear that the allophony of /k/ involves both complementation and free variation. Surprisingly, the complementation of velar obstruent allophones is phonetically conditioned, but follows no obvious phonetic principle. Wuvulu thus presents on the level of the allophone a challenge to phonological theory similar to that presented by sound changes that do not appear to be linguistically motivated.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1527-9421
Print ISSN
0029-8115
Pages
pp. 275-293
Launched on MUSE
2009-01-24
Open Access
No
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