Heidi Harley, Meg Harvey
Harley, Heidi and Meg Harvey. 2020. Hiaki ‘echo vowels’ are motivated by phonotactics, but not the way we thought. Proceedings of the 38th West Coast Conference on Formal Linguistics, University of British Columbia.
Publication year: 2020

Previous descriptions of echo vowels in Hiaki have appealed to phonotactic and metrical constraints on [ʔ.C] clusters that trigger the insertion of a copied (‘echo’) vowel (Dedrick and Casad: 28-29). However Hiaki has another robust method of breaking up illegal clusters, using an epenthetic [i]. Instead we propose that the [ʔ] seen in ‘echo’ V1ʔV1 sequences is not in fact a glottal consonant, but a glottal feature that is attached to certain vowels. Depending on its phonological environment, this feature surfaces as either a glottal onset (before a following vowel) or a preglottalized vowel (before a consonant-initial syllable). To support these claims, we a) present syllable-count data indicating that syllables that would be predicted to be disyllabic under an epenthesis analysis are in fact monosyllabic, b) consider how consonant initial morphemes can trigger echo vowels where they are not seen with vowel-initial allomorphs (ex: -u/-wi) and c) finally compare Hiaki and Mayo cognates in which Mayo word has an echo vowel and following consonant (/l/ or /r/) that the Hiaki word lacks.