By Noonan, Michael
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Extra info for A Grammar of Lango
That) he stop' 'a long time ago' 'just a minute' Words exhibiting this elision of the final vowel (with the concommitant compression of the word's tonal contour into the remaining syllable) are restricted to singular imperatives, third singular subjunctives, and a few adverbs. 38 48 Tone Excluding compounds and borrowings, words in Lango have a maximum of five syllables, and even this length must be achieved through affixation 39 — there are no roots longer than three syllables. Trisyllabic roots are not common, and are almost always decomposible diachronically into compounds.
The initial consonant of a stressed syllable (Sec. 3). 5. 1 In roots and affixes Only non-high vowels can occur root initially. ell ello ammo ammo olio 5115 'to open, uncover' 'to spread, push aside' 'to make smn yawn' 'to handle gently' 'to bore smn' 'to make smn cough' A high front vowel appears root initially only in the preposition i 'in'; high front vowels do appear word initially as prefixes: i-cok 'potato', i-ηέηό 'you saw it'. High back vowels can be neither root nor word initial. All vowels may occur in suffixes, but no prefix contains /ο/, Μ, or /u/.
From the standpoint of downdrift (and the tone sandhi rules, too), the contour tones HL and LH are treated like ordinary sequences of H's and L's. Thus, in the sequence HL H, the second H is lower than the first: (4) [~Λ -] HL H The falling downstep Η Ή is likewise treated as a sequence of Η and Ή so that a H following H'H is said at the same pitch as the coda (the Ή) of the falling downstep: (5) Γ— -] H'H H Downstepped L's do not occur in Lango as H is the dominant tone and is never lost from the tonal contour in sandhi — though it may be displaced to the right.