Date: Mon, 7 Aug 1995 21:35:22 +0700
To: Multiple recipients of list <>
Subject: Re: LV Hayes: The 12 Animal Cycle & Pronounce "Siam"?
(re-editted to eliminate typos)

Sun, 6 Aug 1995 13:02:34 +0700, LV Hayes:

Vietnamese nga `horse' is thought by some to be borrowed from Tai, cf.
Proto-Tai *ngwue (Fang Kuei Li, A Handbook of Comparative Tai, pp. 239f.),
but this seems doubtful because *ngwue is 'cow, ox' in Tai, not `horse', and
found according to Li only in southern Tai.

Vietnamese a is the open-syllable allophone of closed-syllable (by open /closed I mean ending in vowel / ending in consonant) and derives from a: (or something like that). I think there is a cognate nga "horse" in Li (Hainan) but I'd have to look up old notes at home first to be sure.

There are three pairs of such allophones in Vietnamese:




. . . . . . . . . . .<cut>

Sun, 6 Aug 1995 13:06:48 +0700, LV Hayes:

Without your legend, Vietnamese specialists would, of course, be confused
by the citation, {C1}, because {B1} is correct within the
context of Vietnamese historical phonology.

{B1} is correct for Chang Kun/Herbert Purnell, and that is Fangkuei Li {C1}

Chang  Li  sign North South Central Proto
A1 A1   even even even *K...
A2 A2 ` falling falling falling *G...
C1 B1  ?  questive questive questive *K...h
C2 B2  ~  flexed questive heavy *G...h
B1 / D1 C1 / D1 ´ sharp sharp heavy *K...{? / kpt}
B2 / D2 C2 / D2 . heavy heavy heavy *G...{? / kpt}

The cause and dating of the a: >   shift still remains a controver-
sial issue. Ferlus agrees with you that it postdates the split of Viet-
Muong into Vietnamese and the Muong dialects and represents a simple case
of diphthongization, even if he is unable to explain why its conditioning
factor(s) cannot be identified. I suspect that in at least some cases, it
reflects vowel transfer in reduction of disyllabics, e.g. Proto-Viet-Muong
*?da:k > *?dak > Vietnamese nc, but *?da:k > Muong Khen ddác
`water'. Thus, Proto-Viet-Muong may have possessed only *?da:k or the al-
ternants, *?da:k, *?da:k and *?dak

Compare: North-South ngi, Central ngài "person" the latter occurs in North-South for "Mister" (interdialectal loan?) and doesn't Central have nác for North-South nc "water"? (I'm not sure, have to look up old notes at home).

> It certainly seems quite possible that Che:m La > Chenla. Now, it seems
further possible that Che:m Pa > Champa. Or was that the "barbarians" of
La and those of Pa? Alright, all you historians lurking out there: Just
what/who were the La and the Pa?

The following comes from memory, so please bear with me for possible errors in the vowel transcription and for leaving out the tones (I'll be more precise when I've had a chance to look up old notes): Some time ago, I'd also been speculating on possible common root in the names of Zhenla (Chenla) and what is known as Champa. but for the latter I had taken the name under which it figured in early Chinese records, i.e. Linyi. The original pronunciation was something like Limyap (vowels?). Could this have been from a root *lap with infix *m, and could Zhenla have derived from a *lap with prefixed *cen? My speculative highflight bogged down when I failed to find an adequate candidate for *lap in Cham. As for Champa, I don't think there's much of a chance that it was ever pronounced with e in the first syllable (it is of Sanskrit origin, and is attested in Old Cham epigraphy with predictable a for Sanskrit a).


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