Consonant pairs

LucMorningstar666

New Member
German
Hello everyone,

I have a question about consonant pairs. I have been told that there are 10 in polish. I understand the usage of b-p, d-t, g-k, w-f, z-s,ż-sz, ź-ś,dz-c but I'm not sure about dź-ć and dz-cz. For example, if a imperative is used, like idź, dź is still pronounced as dź and not as ć, isn't it? The rule, that the consonant changes to another one is only valid for infinitives/mianowniks or am I wrong? So In odpowiedź, the dź should change to ć. The consonant pair dz-cz is strange to me. Can someone give me an example? I also wonder if the pair dz-cz exists, when do I use dz-cz and when dz-c?

Thank you for helping me.
 
  • zaffy

    Senior Member
    Polish
    To the best of my knowledge, a voiced sound at the end of a word always gets devoiced if it is not followed by another voiced sound or a vowel.

    So, 'Idź!' will be devoiced to /ić/. But in "idź już", devocing will not take place .
    You meant dż-cz.
    Yes, the same process. The 'dż' in "brydż" will be devoiced. But in "Grać w brydża", the devoicing will be stopped by the vowel /a/.

    "Mózg" becomes "mósk", but not in "mózgu" as devoicing is stopped by /u/.
     
    Last edited:

    ornityna

    Member
    Polish
    At the end of words, voiced non-sonorants (b, v, d, z, g etc.) are devoiced:
    kod [kot] 'code', rób [rup] 'do' imper. itd.
    Moreover, if the next word begins with a voiced non-sonorant, the voiceless series is voiced:
    kot [kot] 'cat', but kot bogdana [kod bogdana] 'Bogdan's cat'.
    Therefore, there is no contrast between these pairs at the end of words.

    If you want to look at the sounds (i) c-dz [ts dz], (ii) ć-dź [tɕ dʑ], (iii) cz-dż [tʂ dʐ], you should look inside words/word-initially. Here are some examples:
    (i) cucę - cudze
    'bring to consciousness' - 'foreign'
    (ii) macie - Madzie
    'you have' - 'Magdalena' dim.pl.
    (iii) czczy - dżdży
    'idle' - 'rain'

    These sounds are also contrastive between each other, so you can find minimal pairs for any one pair of them (kace - kacze, tacka - taczka etc.).
     

    jasio

    Senior Member
    Desonorisation occurs also inside the words in consonant clusters, for example in "śliwka" [v]->[f]. In these contexts even sonorants are devoiced, although normally they are considered to not have their devoiced counterparts. But, for example, in "krwawy" [krfavɨ] my vocal cords begin to vibrate as late as in "a".

    Moreover, if the next word begins with a voiced non-sonorant, the voiceless series is voiced:
    Isn't it a dialectal feature?
     
    Last edited:

    ornityna

    Member
    Polish
    Isn't it a dialectal feature?
    Yes. What I wrote is for Standard Polish. In the south (e.g., Cracow), the same rule of voice assimilation works not only for non-sonorants, but also for sonorants (including vowels). E.g.:
    SP: kot Adama [kot adama] 'Adam's cat'
    Cracow: kot Adama [kod adama]
     

    ornityna

    Member
    Polish
    Need to disagree. :) Born and raised here in Cracow and no one says /kod adama/. Nor can I imagine hearing that.
    I can think of two explanations to this: either, for some reason, this dialect has died out in your area or you fell victim to phonetic illusion.
    Phonetic illusion happens when speakers think they hear something that is not there or they do not hear something that is there. For example, most Poles would swear there is a difference in the pronunciation of kod 'code' vs. kot 'cat'. However, these words are phonetically identical: [kɔt].
    Here you have an article with some data about Cracow voicing (Section 4):
    http://repozytorium.amu.edu.pl:8080/bitstream/10593/7474/1/PSiCL_44_3_Michalski.pdf
     

    jasio

    Senior Member
    I have lived in Zakopane for 20 years..., and honestly what's that (''rz'' or "ż") got to do with kot (d) Adama ..!? :confused::p
    Actually, nothing. I was just curious, because some consonants (including the said "rz" and "ż" along with their voiceless counterparts) evolved in a different way in the dialect which has eventually become a basis of the standard pronunciation, and in the local dialect in Podhale.

    Sorry for off-topc.
     

    Ben Jamin

    Senior Member
    Polish
    I can think of two explanations to this: either, for some reason, this dialect has died out in your area or you fell victim to phonetic illusion.
    Phonetic illusion happens when speakers think they hear something that is not there or they do not hear something that is there. For example, most Poles would swear there is a difference in the pronunciation of kod 'code' vs. kot 'cat'. However, these words are phonetically identical: [kɔt].
    Here you have an article with some data about Cracow voicing (Section 4):
    http://repozytorium.amu.edu.pl:8080/bitstream/10593/7474/1/PSiCL_44_3_Michalski.pdf
    I have heard many people pronouncing kod as /kod/, not /kot/ beacuse they wanted to emphasize the meaning of the word.

    Besides, thanks for your comment on the opinions of the type "never heard that". They are of a very dubious value.
     

    LucMorningstar666

    New Member
    German
    To the best of my knowledge, a voiced sound at the end of a word always gets devoiced if it is not followed by another voiced sound or a vowel.

    So, 'Idź!' will be devoiced to /ić/. But in "idź już", devocing will not take place .

    You meant dż-cz.
    Yes, the same process. The 'dż' in "brydż" will be devoiced. But in "Grać w brydża", the devoicing will be stopped by the vowel /a/.

    "Mózg" becomes "mósk", but not in "mózgu" as devoicing is stopped by /u/.
    Ok, so that means that imperatives with ć like zapłać! are just spelled differently although many imperatives have dź at the end but still are pronounced in the same way.
     

    LucMorningstar666

    New Member
    German
    At the end of words, voiced non-sonorants (b, v, d, z, g etc.) are devoiced:
    kod [kot] 'code', rób [rup] 'do' imper. itd.
    Moreover, if the next word begins with a voiced non-sonorant, the voiceless series is voiced:
    kot [kot] 'cat', but kot bogdana [kod bogdana] 'Bogdan's cat'.
    Therefore, there is no contrast between these pairs at the end of words.

    If you want to look at the sounds (i) c-dz [ts dz], (ii) ć-dź [tɕ dʑ], (iii) cz-dż [tʂ dʐ], you should look inside words/word-initially. Here are some examples:
    (i) cucę - cudze
    'bring to consciousness' - 'foreign'
    (ii) macie - Madzie
    'you have' - 'Magdalena' dim.pl.
    (iii) czczy - dżdży
    'idle' - 'rain'

    These sounds are also contrastive between each other, so you can find minimal pairs for any one pair of them (kace - kacze, tacka - taczka etc.).
    Ok, so that means that imperatives with ć like zapłać! are just spelled differently although many imperatives have dź at the end but still are pronounced in the same way. That has always confused me.
     

    Panceltic

    Senior Member
    Slovenščina
    Ok, so that means that imperatives with ć like zapłać! are just spelled differently although many imperatives have dź at the end but still are pronounced in the same way. That has always confused me.

    Yes, although I wouldn’t say ‘they are spelled differently’.

    A better way to think about is ‘they are pronounced the same’.

    Because the underlying sounds are different, they are just all devoiced in coda position.
     

    Ben Jamin

    Senior Member
    Polish
    Yes, although I wouldn’t say ‘they are spelled differently’.

    A better way to think about is ‘they are pronounced the same’.

    Because the underlying sounds are different, they are just all devoiced in coda position.
    The "underlying sounds" are parts of the verb stem, for example "siedź" from "siedzi" and "płać" from "płaci". The spelling with dź is etymologic, but all voiced consonants are devoiced at the end of the word.
     
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