Help:IPA/Alemannic German

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The charts below show the way in which the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) represents Swabian, Low Alemannic, High Alemannic and Highest Alemannic pronunciations in Wikipedia articles.

Notes:

  • Hardly any Alemannic dialect uses all of the sounds described in this guide.
  • Each example word is tagged with the name of the dialect from which it comes.
  • The majority of the example words are from the Zurich dialect.
  • Most Alemannic dialects are not written very often, and thus do not have official spellings. For the sake of consistency, this guide uses the Zurich German spelling convention proposed by Dieth & Schmid-Cadalbert (1986).[1]

See Bernese German phonology for a more thorough look at the sounds of one of the Alemannic dialects.

Consonants
IPA Examples Closest equivalent
Huube [ˈhuːb̥ə] 'bonnet' (ZH)[2] bare
Lade [ˈlɒd̥ə] 'store' (ZH)[2] dart
f offe [ˈofə] 'open' (VS) foot
offe [ˈofːə] 'open' (BE) staff function
ɡ̊ haage [ˈhɒːɡ̊ə] 'fence in' (ZH)[2] go
ɣ̊ mache [ˈmɒɣ̊ə] 'to make' (ZH)[2][3] Scottish loch
ʁ̥ mache [ˈmɒʁ̥ə] 'to make' (ZH)[2][3]
besser [ˈbesʁ̥] 'better' (BS)[4]
h Hand [hɒnd̥] 'hand' (ZH) hat
j Jaar [jɒːr] 'year' (ZH) you
k Egge [ˈekə] 'edge' (BS) scan
Egge [ˈɛkːə] 'edge' (BE) scan
Kind [kʰind̥] 'child' (BSG)[5] cone
kx hocke [ˈhokxə] 'sit' (ZH)[3] Broad cockney cake
hocke [ˈhoqχə] 'sit' (ZH)[3]
l maale [ˈmɒːlə] 'to paint' (ZH) louver
ller [ˈmylːər] 'miller' (ZH) real life
m zaame [ˈtsɒːmə] 'tame' (ZH) mood
Hammer [ˈhɒmːər] 'hammer' (BE) film-maker
n zaane [ˈtsɒːnə] 'to teethe' (ZH) noon
Sunne [ˈz̥ʊnːə] 'sun' (BE) cleanness
ŋ Zange [ˈtsɒŋə] 'pliers' (ZH) ring
ŋː Zange [ˈtsɑŋːə] 'pliers' (BE) ring, but longer
p huupe [ˈhuːpə] 'to hoot' (BS) span
öppe [ˈœpːə] 'around' (BE) span
Pack [pʰɒkx] 'parcel' (ZH)[5] pole
pf Soipfe [ˈz̥oi̯pfə] 'soap' (ZH) cupfull
r faare [ˈv̥ɒːrə] 'to drive' (ZH)[4] Italian però
cheerren [ˈxeːrːən] 'to sweep' (Haslital)[4] Italian burro
ɾ faare [ˈv̥ɒːɾə] 'to drive' (ZH)[4] American water
ʀ faare [ˈv̥ɒːʀə] 'to drive' (ZH)[4] No English equivalent
ʁ faare [ˈv̥ɒːʁə] 'to drive' (ZH)[4] roughly like go, but without completely blocking air flow on the g
ʕ ändard [ˈend̥aʕd̥] 'changes' (SWG)[6] No English equivalent
s hasse [ˈhɑsə] 'to hate' (VS) soon
hasse [ˈhɑsːə] 'to hate' (BE) class size
ʃ tüüsche [ˈtyːʃə] 'to exchange' (VS) ship
ʃː Äsche [ˈæʃːə] 'ash' (BE) cash shortage
t Latte [ˈlɑtə] 'lath' (BS) stand
Latte [ˈlɑtə] 'lath' (BE) stand
Thee [tʰeː] 'tea' (ZH)[5] too
ts butze [ˈb̥utsə] 'to clean' (ZH) cats
tsche [ˈtætʃə] 'to clap' (ZH) chip
Ofe [ˈov̥ə] 'oven' (ZH)[2] foot
ʋ Wand [ʋɒnd̥] 'wall' (ZH) between wine and vine
ʋː niww [niʋː] 'new' (Haslital) between wine and vine
w chalt [ɣ̊awt] 'cold' (BE)[7] wine
Balle [ˈb̥awːə] 'ball' (BE)[8] roughly like bowwow
x lache [ˈlɑxə] 'to laugh' (VS)[3] Scottish loch
lache [ˈlɑxːə] 'to laugh' (BE)[3] Scottish loch, but longer
χ lache [ˈlɑχə] 'to laugh' (VS)[3] Scottish loch
χː lache [ˈlɑχːə] 'to laugh' (BE)[3] Scottish loch, but longer
Hase [ˈhɒz̥ə] 'hares' (ZH)[2] soon
ʒ̊ nuusche [ˈnuːʒ̊ə] 'to rummage' (ZH)[2] ship
Vowels
IPA Examples Closest equivalent
a Affe [ˈafə] 'apes' (BE)[9] art
ɑ Mane [ˈmɑnə] 'men' (ZH)[9][10]
schlaaffe [ˈʒ̊laːfə] 'to sleep' (BE)[9] father
ɑː maane [ˈmɑːnə] 'to remind' (ZH)[9][10]
ɒ Mane [ˈmɒnə] 'men' (ZH)[9][10] RP hot
ɒː maane [ˈmɒːnə] 'to remind' (ZH)[9][10] RP nod
æ gäll [ɡ̊æl] 'isn't it?' (ZH) hat
æː gääl [ɡ̊æːl] 'yellow' (ZH) had
e Bett [ˈb̥et] 'bed' (ZH) Scottish late
deene [ˈd̥eːnə] 'stretch' (ZH) Scottish day
ɛ Hèr [hɛr] 'mister' (ZH)[11] bet
ɛː hèèr [hɛːr] 'from' (ZH)[11] bed
ə schwèche [ˈʒ̊ʋɛxə] 'to weaken' (ZH)[12] about
i sibe [ˈz̥ib̥ə] 'seven' (ZH) leaf
siibe [ˈz̥iːb̥ə] 'to sieve' (ZH) leave
ɪ Rìtter [ˈrɪtər] 'knight' (BE) kit
ɪː Rììs [rɪːz̥] 'giant' (BE) kid
o hole [ˈholə] 'to fetch' (ZH) Scottish oak
hool [hoːl] 'hollow' (ZH) Scottish stove
ɔ Òfe [ˈɔv̥ə] 'oven' (BE)[11] RP/Australian hot
ɔː Gòòfe [ˈɡ̊ɔːv̥ə] 'kids' (BE)[11] RP/Australian nod
ø Böge [ˈb̥øɡ̊ə] 'sheets of paper' (ZH) Somewhat like nurse
œ Blö̀ff [b̥lœf] 'bluff' (ZH)[11]
øː Böögge [ˈb̥øːkə] 'fools' (ZH) Somewhat like fur
œː tö̀ö̀rfe [ˈtœːrfə] 'to be allowed to' (ZH)[11]
u Bruch [b̥rux] 'break' (ZH) boot
Bruuch [b̥ruːɣ̊] 'custom' (ZH) food
ʉː Muus [mʉːs] 'mouse' (BSG)[13] Modern RP goose
ʊ Schùtt [ʒ̊ʊt] 'debris' (BE) foot
ʊː Brùùch [b̥rʊːɣ̊] 'break' (BE) good
y Füli [ˈv̥yli] 'pen' (ZH) Somewhat like cute
ʏ hǜtt [hʏt] 'today' (BE)
Füüli [ˈv̥yːli] 'laziness' (ZH) Somewhat like feud
ʏː Tǜǜre [ˈtʏːrə] 'door' (BE)
Diphthong offsets
IPA Examples English approximation
nia [nia̯] 'never' (SWG) roughly like ear
æ̯ niä [niæ̯] 'never' (UR)
ə̯ nie [niə̯] 'never' (ZH)
frei [v̥rei̯] 'free' (ZH) The y-like ending in day
Chüo [xyo̯] 'cow' (VS) The w-like ending in go
äu [æu̯] 'also' (ZH)
vlöüge [ˈv̥lœy̑ɡ̊ə] 'to fly' (Saanenland) Roughly like the w-like ending in go
Suprasegmentals
IPA Examples Explanation
ˈ deene [ˈd̥eːnə] 'stretch' (ZH) Primary stress, as in deer /ˈdɪər/
ˌ Hèrdöpfel [ˈhɛrˌd̥øpfəl] 'potato' (ZH)[14] Secondary stress, as in as in commandeer /ˌkɒmənˈdɪər/

Notes

  1. ^ Cited in Fleischer & Schmid (2006:251)
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h Some scholars choose to transcribe the lenis obstruents with the symbols ⟨p, t, k, x, s, ʃ⟩, rather than ⟨b̥, d̥, ɡ̊, ɣ̊, v̥, z̥, ʒ̊⟩. In that case, the fortis obstruents are transcribed ⟨pː, tː, kː, xː, sː, ʃː⟩ or ⟨pp, tt, kk, xx, ss, ʃʃ⟩, rather than ⟨p, t, k, x, s, ʃ⟩. Here, we choose to transcribe the lenis obstruents as ⟨b̥, d̥, ɡ̊, ɣ̊, v̥, z̥, ʒ̊⟩, whereas the fortis obstruents are transcribed ⟨p, t, k, x, s, ʃ⟩. Long fortis obstruents or geminates occur in most of Switzerland except for the extreme Northeast, Wallis, and the Grisons–St. Gall Rhine valley.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h The dorsal obstruents /kx, x, ɣ̊/ are realized as velar [kx, x, ɣ̊] or uvular [, χ, ʁ̥], depending on the dialect.
  4. ^ a b c d e f The /r/ phoneme can be pronounced as an alveolar trill [r], an alveolar tap [ɾ], a uvular trill [ʀ], a voiced uvular fricative [ʁ], a voiceless lenis uvular fricative [ʁ̥], or as a uvular approximant [ʁ̞] (for simplicity, we transcribe it the same as a voiced uvular fricative), depending on the dialect. Some dialects (e.g. Zurich German) use all six realizations (Fleischer & Schmid (2006:244)).
  5. ^ a b c The aspirated consonants [pʰ, tʰ, kʰ] occur in borrowings from Standard German (Fleischer & Schmid (2006:244)). In the dialects of Basel and Chur, an aspirated [kʰ] is also present in native words.
  6. ^ In Swabian German, /r/ is realized as a uvular approximant [ʁ̞] in syllable onset, but as a pharyngeal approximant [ʕ̞] in other positions (Markus Hiller. "Pharyngeals and "lax" vowel quality" (PDF). Mannheim: Institut für Deutsche Sprache. ). For simplicity, we transcribe these sounds as, respectively, [ʁ] and [ʕ].
  7. ^ In Bernese German, /l/ in the syllable coda is realized as [w].
  8. ^ In Bernese German, the geminate /lː/ is realized as [].
  9. ^ a b c d e f The open vowels /a, aː/ can be front unrounded [a, ], central unrounded [ä, äː] (although for simplicity, we transcribe these variants the same as the front [a, aː]), back unrounded [ɑ, ɑː] or back rounded [ɒ, ɒː], depending on the dialect.
  10. ^ a b c d Zurich German has a free variation between back unrounded [ɑ, ɑː] and back rounded [ɒ, ɒː] realizations (Fleischer & Schmid (2006:248)).
  11. ^ a b c d e f The mid vowels /ɛ, ɛː, œ, œː, ɔ, ɔː/ can be open-mid [ɛ, ɛː, œ, œː, ɔ, ɔː] or true-mid [ɛ̝, ɛ̝ː, œ̝, œ̝ː, ɔ̝, ɔ̝ː] (e.g. in Bernese German (Marti (1985:28)), depending on the dialect. For simplicity, we transcribe both open-mid and true-mid realizations simply as [ɛ, ɛː, œ, œː, ɔ, ɔː].
  12. ^ The schwa /ə/ occurs only in unstressed syllables.
  13. ^ In Basel German and in the dialect of Markgräflerland, /uː/ is fronted to [ʉː].
  14. ^ Less common variant: Hö̀rdöpfel [ˈhœrˌd̥øpfəl] (Fleischer & Schmid (2006:247)).

Bibliography

  • Dauwalder, Hans (1992), Wie mma s seid und cha schriiben. Eine haslideutsche Kurzgrammatik, Meiringen: Gemeinnütziger Verein 
  • Dieth, Eugen; Schmid-Cadalbert, Christian (1986), Schwyzertütschi Dialäktschrift. Dieth-Schreibung (2nd ed.), Aarau: Sauerländer 
  • Fleischer, Jürg; Schmid, Stephan (2006), "Zurich German" (PDF), Journal of the International Phonetic Association, 36 (2): 243–253, doi:10.1017/S0025100306002441 
  • Hotzenköcherle, Rudolf, ed. (1962–1997), Sprachatlas der deutschen Schweiz, Bern: Francke 
  • Werlen, Iwar (1977), Lautstrukturen des Dialekts von Brig im schweizerischen Kanton Wallis, Wiesbaden: Franz Steiner 
  • Marti, Werner (1985), Berndeutsch-Grammatik, Bern: Francke, ISBN 3-7720-1587-5 
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