Rendaku and individual segments

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This paper reviews suggestions involving particular individual phonemes, either as potential rendaku targets or as elements in the environment. Some of the proposed segmental effects are real, at least as statistical tendencies in the existing vocabulary, and experimental studies suggest that native speakers can and sometimes do internalize such micro-generalizations. On the other hand, although it is widely reported that a moraic nasal immediately preceding a potential rendaku site promotes rendaku, this putative tendency does not stand up to scrutiny. It has not, however, been tested experimentally. The final section of the paper looks at phenomena that preempt rendaku: moraic obstruent insertion and replacement of h with w.


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