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724 LANGUAGE, VOLUME 62, NUMBER 3 (1986) The central part ofthe introduction deals with the phonetics and phonology of Heinzenberg Sutsilvan (7-14), the nominal and verbal morphology (14-19), and the syntax (20, including the loan translations from German: e.g. sweyntar mia idéya, Ger. nach meiner Meinung ). Here the reader will find detailed information on this variety of rumantsch, which should be used as a supplement to earlier information (e.g. Th. Gartner's Rhaeto-Romance grammar, or foundational work by A. Decurtins and H. Stimm on verbal morphology). The detailed phonetic and phonological description is meticulously applied to the recorded texts (for words with falling diphthongs, e.g. [mear] 'better ', p. 8, 1 have also noted a pronunciation with intermediate semivowel, [meyar]). My own impression is that S&E have improved existing notation systems for Rhaeto-Romance in a way that can provide a model for subsequent research and publications. The introduction concludes with discussion of the Sutsilvan orthography (the principles of which are analysed on pp. 21-2), a list of symbols and abbreviations, and a select bibliography . The recorded texts (24-48) follow, covering a wide variety of themes: local festivities, family chronicles, games, theater, dancing, the preparation of cheese, pear-bread and sauerkraut , and more personal stories, such as travel records and youthful memories. But the most interesting texts for me are those (nos. 19-22) on the use of rumantsch (ramöntsch in Sutsilvan ) vs. German. For each text, the reader is given a phonetic transcription (middle column), the normalized version in Sutsilvan orthography (on the left), and a German translation (on the right). Moreover , the difficulties within each text are explained in footnotes. This fascicle is a brilliant example ofthe combination ofdescriptive accuracy, dialectological fieldwork, and folklore study. Moreover, it is a precious document for sociolinguistic research: the numerous lexical borrowings from German, the fluctuations within the verb morphology (19), and the simplification of the phonological system (13-14) indicate a precarious situation of the Rhaeto-Romance dialects of the Hinterrhein . We should therefore be grateful to S&E for providing us with the recorded (and precisely described) speech of a dying Rhaeto-Romance community. [P. Swiggers, Belgian National Science Foundation.] On the semantics of tense and aspect in Bulgarian. By Juoko Lindstedt. (Slavica Helsingiensia, 4.) Helsinki: Dept. of Slavic Languages, University of Helsinki, 1985. Pp. 319. FM 74.00. The Bulgarian verb, which shares with the Macedonian the distinction of having the most complicated system of grammatical categories in all Slavdom, has served as the focus ofmany dissertations and monographs. Although L has made extensive use of the previous literature, he also cites examples which he found himself (and which he has not referenced as adequately as those from the previous literature), and he has done his own fieldwork. His bibliography of over 200 entries shows thorough familiarity with Bulgarian and Soviet (but not Polish) scholarship , a good knowledge of West European sources, more references to American work than in many European studies of Bulgarian, and more Scandinavian references than are usually encountered. An interesting feature is the occasional comparison of Bulgarian with Finnish. As L states (13), in his introductory chapter, where he reviews various theoretical models of tense and aspect, he has focused on three oppositions : perfective vs. imperfective, aorist vs. imperfect, and the so-called 'perfect' vs. the aorist and imperfect together. In the two chapters which follow on BuI. tense and aspect respectively , comprising two-thirds ofthe text, L develops his theories and explanations within the context of a very traditional approach to BuI. grammar, viz. the nine 'tenses': present (e.g. 3sgxodi), imperfect (xodeSe), aorist (xodi), perfect (xodil e), pluperfect (beSe xodil), future (Ste xodi), future perfect (Ste e xodil), past future (SteSe da xodi), and past future perfect (SteSe da e xodil). Coming up against the great bugbear ofSlavic verbal morphology—the status oftheperfective/ imperfective opposition—L tries to dodge it by going in two directions at once: "The grammaticality ofaspect is shown by the strong tendency to form aspectual pairs, irrespective of whether the means of formation is called inflection or word formation; hence aspect is at least a paradigmatic category, if not inflectional' (154). L tries a...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1535-0665
Print ISSN
0097-8507
Pages
pp. 724-725
Launched on MUSE
2015-04-01
Open Access
No
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