Phonology of Silindion


The consonant inventory of Silindion is as follows:
(Those elements within slashes are phonemes, those elements within brackets are frequently occurring allophones. More study is needed to discover whether or not these are true phonemes)

+V -V +V -V +V -V +V -V +V -V +V -V +V -V
OBSTRUENT /b/ /p/ /d/ /t/ [c] /g/ /k/
NASAL /m/ /n/ [n~] [N]
LIQUID /l/ /r/
FRICATIVE /v/ /f/ /T/ /s'/ /s/ /h/
SEMIVOWEL /w/ /W/ /j/ //

There are some restraints on where these sounds can occur in a word. Also, there are many different alterations of sounds which occur due to morphophonological processes.

  1. Restraints.

    1. The following sounds may end a word:
      /d/, /m/, /n/, /l/, /r/, /s/, /s'/, /w/, /j/

      However, these are even more restricted than what the above might suggest.

      1. final /d/ is only found in three words:
        • id 'this, here' (emphasis) /id/
        • ud 'that, there' (emphasis) /ud/
        • id 'behold, see'
      2. final /m/ is only found in the suffix:
        • -lim 'ablative'
      3. final /w/ is only found in the suffix:
        • -u 'instrumental' when attached to vowels stems like:
          kénëu /kE:new/ 'with the shore' or núksïu /nu:ksiw/ 'with tears'
      4. final /j/ is only found in a handful of words.

    2. Every consonant except /b/ and /w/ may begin a word.
      However, /g/ and [N] are very rare. Probably the only frequently occurring words that these sounds appear in are the synonymous: /gaj/ or /Ngaj/ 'staff'

    3. Medially, between vowels, the following sounds are allowed:
      /d/, [c], /m/, /n/, [n~], /l/, /r/, /v/, /f/, /T/, /s'/, /h/, /W/, /j/, //

      • between vowels lengthened allomorphs of the following occur: /t/, /p/, /k/, /s/
        Thus: sitti 'me' /siti/ --› [si:t:i]
      • Whether the lengthened sound is written with a double consonant or not is merely due to morphology. This means that ‹sitti› is written with two ‹t›'s because it is two morphemes, ‹sit-› 'I' and ‹-ti› 'accusative'. However, another word, such as ‹seka› 'thing' uses only one consonant because it is only one morpheme.
      • Medially, there also exists a lengthened /l/, /m/ and /n/ (symbolized: [l:], [m:] and [n:]) which may or may not be another phoneme. More research is necessary.



Stress is on the penultimate syllable, unless indicated by the acute accent. This irregular stress is provoked by certain morphosyntactic forms. The forms which provoke this stress shift are: