Abstract

Abstract:

The reconstruction of Proto-Malayo-Polynesian (PMP) *h as a syllable onset continuing Proto-Austronesian (PAn) *S has depended heavily, though not exclusively, on Central Philippine languages, where it is well supported. In coda position, however, the reconstruction of *h has been more difficult. Word-final *h was initially proposed solely on the basis of phonological alternations in Tagalog, and only later shown to be reflected as a coda by Itbayaten of the Batanes Islands, and less securely by Aklanon in the Bisayas. New evidence for PMP *-h continuing PAn *S is introduced here from Central Luzon languages, Bisayan languages, and Mamanwa of Mindanao. In addition, revised material on Aklanon now shows that it, too, preserves coda /h/. However, not all examples of -h in Philippine languages can be traced to PAn *S. Rather, a surprising number of these segments correspond to zero in most previous reconstructions. More problematically, the cognate sets that contain -h involve multiple sound correspondences, raising difficult questions about their origin.

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