Pitch accent tonal alignment in declarative sentences in the Spanish of the Basque Country

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Previous studies like Elordieta (2003) and Elordieta and Calleja (2005) suggested that the fact that speakers of Lekeitio Spanish produced systematic L+H pitch accents could be due to partial transfer from the H+L pitch accent of their native Basque dialect (transfer of H). Here, we analyse three new Basque Spanish populations: (i) L1 Basque speakers of a Basque dialect with rising accents (Goierri), (ii) monolingual Spanish speakers from Donostia (a city of intense Basque/Spanish language contact), and (iii) monolingual Spanish speakers from Bilbao (a Spanish-prominent city). Our results show consistent posttonic peaks in all three varieties, which we argue further strengthens the hypothesis that the early alignments of Lekeitio Spanish are due to transfer from the Basque spoken there.


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