Absence of Common Consonants

by Ian Maddieson http://wals.info/feature/18

7 Responses to “Absence of Common Consonants”

  1. Doug Marmion Says:

    Another language lacking velar consonants is Wutung (Sko; Sandaun, Papua New Guinea), a very close relative of the already-cited Dumo. This is mentioned in my PhD thesis on the language.

  2. Benjamin Goehring Says:

    “only one language, Dumu (Sko; Sandaun, Papua New Guinea), is currently known to have no velar consonants”
    -Tahitian has no velar consonants (Conversational Tahitian by D.T. Tryon, pg. 1).
    -Xavante has no velar consonants (The Amazonian Languages, Cambridge University Press 1999, pg. 178).
    -I’ve heard that Piraha can also be analyzed as having no velar consonants, almost as well as it can be analyzed as having no nasals.
    It’s also interesting to note that all the languages that have no velars (that I’ve heard of) have very phonemic glottals (both stop and “fricative”- though I can’t speak for Dumu).
    -I’ve heard that Kiribati, though it has no phonemic fricatives, has s as an allophone of t before i.
    -If we’re counting languages that have voiced stops as allophones of nasals as having no nasals (like Maxakali and Piraha), then we might as well throw I’saka into the mix (according to Wikipedia).

  3. Rebecca Ashling Says:

    Aleut most certainly has fricatives. I once had access to an Aleut textbook and I distinctly remember the presence of /{{IPA|ꭓ}}/ because of its distinctive grapheme ⟨x̂⟩.

  4. Kevin Walker Says:

    Typo – under 2. bilabials the German ligature ß has been used in place of Greek β for the voiced bilabial fricative.

  5. Gilbert Ramsay Says:

    I’m rather amazed that Modern Standard Arabic has been left out here as an extremely well known example of a language lacking both /p/ and /g/. While /g/ exists in modern Egyptian Arabic and Gulf Arabic, it’s also absent (or at least marginal) in widely spoken modern dialects of Arabic too, notably most non-Bedouin Levantine dialects.

  6. Gilbert Ramsay Says:

    Sorry – I’ve placed this comment on the wrong chapter – should be in “Gaps in Plosive Systems”

  7. Gilbert Ramsay Says:

    Sorry – I’ve placed this comment on the wrong chapter – should be in “Voicing and Gaps in Plosive Systems”

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