Volume 47, Issue 1
  • ISSN 0731-3500
  • E-ISSN: 2214-5907
Buy:$35.00 + Taxes



Nuosu Yi, a Tibeto-Burman language, has a tone sandhi pattern, where a lexical [33] -tone is realized as [44]-tone on the surface. This tone sandhi pattern in Nuosu Yi is described as having a “weak phonological status (Gerner, 2013: 28)”. In this study, we confirm this observation and further show the role of phonological length in the tone sandhi patterns. A closer examination of the sandhi contexts, however, reveals an intricate interplay between phonology and morphology of various aspects of Nuosu Yi grammar. Tone sandhi is conditioned by word size and morphological processes. Monosyllabic words, but not multi-syllabic words, tend to undergo tone sandhi, and tone sandhi is sensitive to morphological operations such as compounding.


Article metrics loading...

Loading full text...

Full text loading...


  1. Baumbach, Ernst J. M.
    1987Analytical Tsonga grammar. Pretoria: University of South Africa.
    [Google Scholar]
  2. Bradley, David
    1979Proto-Loloish. London and Malmö: Curzon Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  3. 1990 The status of the 44 tone in Nosu. La Trobe University Working Papers in Linguistics31 (1990).125–137.
    [Google Scholar]
  4. Chao, Yuan-Ren
    1930 ə sistim əv ‘toun-letəz’. Le Maître Phonétique81. 24–27.
    [Google Scholar]
  5. Chen, Kang 陈康
    2010彝语方言研究Yiyu fangyan yanjiu [A study of Yi dialects]. Beijing: China Minzu University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  6. Chen, Kang 陈康 & Da Wu巫达
    1998彝语语法:诺苏话Yiyu yufa: Shengza fangyan [Grammar of Yi language: Based on the Shypnra dialect]. Beijing: China Minzu University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  7. Chen, Matthew Y.
    2000Tone sandhi: Patterns across Chinese dialects. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 10.1017/CBO9780511486364
    https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511486364 [Google Scholar]
  8. Chen, Shilin 陈士林, Shiming Bian 边 仕明 & Xiuqing Li 李秀清
    1985彝语简志 [A brief description of Yi language]. Beijing: The Ethnic Publishing House.
    [Google Scholar]
  9. Ding, Hongdi
    2023 Phonology of Adur Niesu in Liangshan, Sichuan. Languages8(3). 164. 10.3390/languages8030164
    https://doi.org/10.3390/languages8030164 [Google Scholar]
  10. Elordieta, Gorka
    1998 Intonation in a Pitch Accent variety of Basque. International Journal of Basque Linguistics and Philology321. 511–569.
    [Google Scholar]
  11. Gerner, Matthias
    2013A grammar of Nuosu. Berlin: de Gruyter Mouton. 10.1515/9783110308679
    https://doi.org/10.1515/9783110308679 [Google Scholar]
  12. Hu, Suhua 胡素华
    2002彝语结构助词研究 [Research on Yi structural particles]. Beijing: Nationalities Publishing House.
    [Google Scholar]
  13. 2005 凉山彝语被动义的表达方式Liangshan Yiyu beidongyi de biaoda fangshi [The expressions of passive meaning in Liangshan Yi]. 语言研究Yuyan yanjiu [Language research] 41. 117–121.
    [Google Scholar]
  14. Hu, Suhua
    2021 The split word orders APV and PAV of Nuosu Yi. Asian Languages and Linguistics2(1). 36–79. 10.1075/alal.20011.hu
    https://doi.org/10.1075/alal.20011.hu [Google Scholar]
  15. Kokado, Norio 小门典夫
    2003 凉山彝语的被动句Liangshan Yiyu de beidongju [Passive sentences in Liangshan Yi]. 语言研究Yuyan yanjiu [Language research] 41: 118–124.
    [Google Scholar]
  16. Lalhminghlui, Wendy and Priyankoo Sarmah
    2018 Production and perception of rising tone sandhi in Mizo. Proceedings of 6th International symposium on Tonal Aspects of Languages (TAL 2018): 114–118. 10.21437/TAL.2018‑23
    https://doi.org/10.21437/TAL.2018-23 [Google Scholar]
  17. Lama Ziwo 拉玛兹偓
    1991 试论彝语次高调产生的原因 [A preliminary study on the origin of Yi lower-high tone]. 民族语文Minzu Yuwen [Minority Languages of China] 51. 35–38.
    [Google Scholar]
  18. Lama, Ziwo
    2012 Subgrouping of Nisoic (Yi) languages: A study from the perspectives of shared innovation and phylogenetic estimation. Arlington: University of Texas at ArlingtonPhD thesis.
    [Google Scholar]
  19. Li, Min 李民
    1984 凉山彝语被动句和主动句Liangshan Yiyu beidongju he zhudongju (Passive sentences and active sentences in Liangshan Yi). 西南民族学院学报Xinan Minzuxueyuan Xuebao [Journal of Southwest Minzu University] 11. 71–79.
    [Google Scholar]
  20. Ma, Linying, Dennis Walters & Susan Walters
    (eds.) 2008Yi-Chinese-English glossary. Beijing: Nationalities Publishing House.
    [Google Scholar]
  21. Pu, Zhongliang 普忠良
    2008 彝语:云南四川贵州广西壮族自治区Yiyu: Yunnan, Sichuan, Guizhou, Guangxi Zhuangzuzizhiqu [Yi Language: Yunnan, Sichuan, Guizhou and Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region]. InInstitute of Linguistics, CASS; Institute of Ethnology and Anthropology, CASS; and Language Information Sciences Research Centre, City University of Hong Kong, (eds.) 中国语言地图集Zhongguo yuyan dituji [Language atlas of China], 2nd edn., v.21, C1–22. Beijing: The Commercial Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  22. Selkirk, Elisabeth
    1980The phrase phonology of English and French. London: Routledge.
    [Google Scholar]
  23. Shih, Chilin
    1986 The prosodic domain of tone sandhi in Chinese. San Diego: University of California, San Diego, PhD thesis.
    [Google Scholar]
  24. Sui, Yanyan
    2018 Affixation or compounding? Reduplication in Standard Chinese. InRita Finkbeiner & Ulrike Freywald (eds.), Exact repetition in grammar and discourse, 127–157. Berlin: De Gruyter Mouton. 10.1515/9783110592498‑006
    https://doi.org/10.1515/9783110592498-006 [Google Scholar]
  25. Yang, Renqin 杨仁琴
    2021 彝语义诺话声调及变调研究Yiyu Yinuohua shengdiao ji biandiao yanjiu [A study of Yinuo Yi tone and its tone sandhi]. Chengdu: Southwest Minzu UniversityMA thesis.
    [Google Scholar]
  26. Yip, Moira
    2002Tone. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 10.1017/CBO9781139164559
    https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9781139164559 [Google Scholar]
  27. Zerbian, Sabine
    2012 Morpho-phonological and morphological minimality in Tswana monosyllabic stems (Southern Bantu). InThomas Stolz, Nicole Nau & Cornelia Stroh (eds.), Monosyllables: From phonology to typology, 131–148. Berlin: de Gruyter. 10.1524/9783050060354.131
    https://doi.org/10.1524/9783050060354.131 [Google Scholar]
  28. Zhu, Wenxu 朱文旭 and Jing Zhang 张静
    2004 彝语被动句式研究Yiyu beidongjushi yanjiu [Passive constructions of Yi language]. 语言研究Yuyan yanjiu [Language research] 31. 119–126.
    [Google Scholar]

Data & Media loading...

  • Article Type: Research Article
Keyword(s): compounding; monosyllabicity; Nuosu Yi; phonology-morphology interface; tone sandhi
This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was successful
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error