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Long-distance major place harmony

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  20 January 2020

Nick Danis*
Washington University in St Louis


In previous surveys of long-distance consonant harmony, the major place features [labial], [dorsal] and [coronal] are conspicuously absent from the set of possible harmonising features. Ngbaka Minagende displays major place harmony between labial-dorsal segments and simple labials and velars, thus filling this empirical gap. The presence of complex segments with multiple place is crucial to seeing this harmony pattern clearly. These patterns are best handled in the Agreement by Correspondence framework with an active CC-Ident[place] constraint. Other analyses either cannot capture the pattern at all or require fundamental changes elsewhere in phonological theory. The data are supported by a new digitisation and statistical analysis of a Ngbaka Minagende dictionary.

Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2020

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I would like to thank Akinbiyi Akinlabi, Will Bennett, Paul de Lacy, Natalie DelBusso, Brett Hyde, Adam Jardine, Jaye Padgett, Alan Prince and Bruce Tesar for their help and guidance at various points in this project. I would also like to thank audiences at Rutgers University and the 2016 Annual Meeting on Phonology at USC, where earlier versions of this work were presented. The manuscript improved greatly through comments from the associate editor and three anonymous reviewers, and I thank them as well. Others who have made contributions, both large and small, are acknowledged throughout, and I apologise for any names omitted. All mistakes are my own.



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