Wenchang dialect

Wenchang dialect
Native to Southern China
Region Wenchang, Hainan
Language codes
ISO 639-3
Glottolog None
Linguasphere 79-AAA-kd > 79-AAA-kdb
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Wenchang dialect (simplified Chinese: 文昌话; traditional Chinese: 文昌話; pinyin: Wénchāng huà) is a dialect of Hainanese which is spoken in Wenchang, a county-level city in the northeast of Hainan, an island province in southern China. It is considered the prestige form of Hainanese, and is used by the provincial broadcasting media.

Phonology [ edit ]

The initials of the Wenchang dialect are:[1]

Bilabial Dental Palatal Velar Glottal
Stop / Affricate voiceless t k ʔ
voiced implosive ɓ ɗ
voiced b d g
Nasal m n ŋ
Fricative voiceless ɸ ɕ h
voiced (w) (j) ɦ
Lateral l

The semivowels [w] and [j] are in complementary distribution with [ɦ], and may be treated as allophones of the same phoneme.[2] The voiced stops /d/ and /g/ occur with only about ten words each.[3]

There are five vowels, /i/, /u/, /e/, /o/ and /a/.[4] The high vowels /i/ and /u/ may also occur as medials.[5]

The possible finals are:[6]

Vocalic codas Nasal codas Stop codas
a ai au am an ap at ak
ia iau iam ian iaŋ iap iat iak
ua uai uan uaŋ uat uak
e ei ek
o oi ou om op ok
io iom ioŋ iop iok
i iu
u ui un ut

There are also two syllabic nasals, /m̩/ and /ŋ̍/, which occur in a total of three words.[7]

Wenchang dialect has six tones on isolated syllabes:[8]

Middle Chinese tone
level (píng 平) rising (shàng 上) departing ( 去) entering ( 入)
upper (yīn 阴) 44 21ʔ 11 51ʔ
lower (yáng 阳) 33 42ʔ

References [ edit ]

  1. ^ Woon (1979a), pp. 66–70.
  2. ^ Woon (1979a), p. 70.
  3. ^ Woon (1979a), pp. 69, 70.
  4. ^ Woon (1979a), p. 73.
  5. ^ Woon (1979a), pp. 74–75.
  6. ^ Woon (1979a), pp. 71–75.
  7. ^ Woon (1979a), pp. 72, 75.
  8. ^ Woon (1979a), pp. 75–81.

Sources [ edit ]

  • Woon, Wee-Lee (1979a), "A synchronic phonology of Hainan dialect: Part I", Journal of Chinese Linguistics, 7 (1): 65–100, JSTOR 23753034.
  • Woon, Wee-Lee (1979b), "A synchronic phonology of Hainan dialect: Part II", Journal of Chinese Linguistics, 7 (2): 268–302, JSTOR 23752923.
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