Norwegian: Do nouns change tone in the definite singular form?

2wrbk

Member
Polski
Hello. I would expect compound nouns like Bergenshalvøyen, Trondheimsfjorden and Trønderbanen to be pronounced [ˈbærɡn̩sˌhɑlːœʏən] (with tone 1 as in bønder), [²trɔn(h)æɪmsˌfjuːɳ̍] (with tone 2 as in bønner) and [ˈtrœnːdərˌbɑːnən] (again with tone 1 as in bønder). This analysis would very likely be accurate if the forms were Bergenshalvøy, Trondheimsfjord and Trønderbane. But they aren't. So, my question is: does the definite singular marker -en change the tone of nouns? If so, what are the rules and how consistently are they applied? Because in compound nouns, the rule is that the compound uses the same toneme as its first member if it's polysyllabic.

My question is about Standard East Norwegian.
 
  • Svenke

    Senior Member
    Norwegian
    No, tonemes are not changed by the definiteness suffix in the singular. The tonemes are as you have indicated in your transcriptions.
     

    2wrbk

    Member
    Polski
    Thanks. Does this mean that Lerkendal is pronounced [ˈlærkəndɑːl], with tone 1? I assume that lerken in that compound is a definite singular form of lerk, though that may be a mistake.

    Also, what about monosyllabic nouns? Are these invariably assigned tone 1 in the definite singular form? EDIT: I'm answering the second question myself - they are, both common and neuter. Check Allison Wetterlin's Tonal Accents in Norwegian, p. 57.
     
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    Svenke

    Senior Member
    Norwegian
    I don't know the etymology of Lerkendal, but it is pronounced with toneme 1.
    Compounds don't normally have definite inflection on the first part (but there are exceptions, especially in place names).
    There are some compounds where the first part has the suffix -(e)n, presumably a loan from German. Examples are rosenkål and Rosenborg. :)
     

    2wrbk

    Member
    Polski
    Thanks.

    I don't know the etymology of Lerkendal, but it is pronounced with toneme 1.
    Compounds don't normally have definite inflection on the first part (but there are exceptions, especially in place names).
    There are some compounds where the first part has the suffix -(e)n, presumably a loan from German. Examples are rosenkål and Rosenborg. :)
    Would you say that that -(e)n in compounds with monosyllabic first members induces accent 1, like -s in dåpshandling but unlike a bare -e in sansebedrag (which induces accent 2)? Or is tone 1 assigned because they're all loans (or is it perhaps not assigned consistently but haphazardly).

    Berulfsen in his Norsk uttaleordbok (p. 270) states that compounds with rosen as the first member take either accent 1 (as rosenkål and rosenpotet) or any of the two accents (like rosenkrans). The place name Rosendal also takes tone 1, so I would assume that Rosenborg behaves in the same way (so that's another IPA that Wikipedia gets wrong).

    Hello
    Just a surmise by a person that does not know Norwegian:
    can it be the same as German Lerchental (valley of the larks)?
    That's exactly what I thought, though I wasn't sure of the etymology.
     
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    raumar

    Senior Member
    Norwegian
    The place name Rosendal also takes tone 1, so I would assume that Rosenborg behaves in the same way
    That's right.

    Or is tone 1 assigned because they're all loan
    I don't know, but the suffix -(e)n isn't standard Norwegian, so I doubt that you can find any rule for it in Norwegian. This suffix is probably loaned from German, as Svenke says, and it is mainly used in aristocratic-sounding names (Rosendal is a barony). Having said that, I can't think of any such words with accent 2.

    By the way, you can't necessarily assume that ordinary words and names have the same accent. For example, the word "bakken" (definite singular form of "bakke") has accent 2, but the surname "Bakken" has accent 1 in my eastern dialect (but may have accent 2 in other regions).

    can it be the same as German Lerchental (valley of the larks)?
    Actually, the name comes from an estate named Lerchendal, owned by Rear Admiral Christian Lerche (from a Danish aristocratic family), who had named the estate after himself.
    Lerchendal gård – Wikipedia

    Bergenshalvøyen
    This looks weird in Eastern Norwegian, where most people would say and write "-øya". "-øyen" is rarely used outside of Bergen.
     

    2wrbk

    Member
    Polski
    Thanks.

    I don't know, but the suffix -(e)n isn't standard Norwegian, so I doubt that you can find any rule for it in Norwegian. This suffix is probably loaned from German, as Svenke says, and it is mainly used in aristocratic-sounding names (Rosendal is a barony). Having said that, I can't think of any such words with accent 2.
    To me, the rule seems to be that these words get accent 1 because they're loanwords. Allison Wetterlin argues that accent 1 is the lexical one and that most lexically specified words are loans. In other words, accent 2 is the unmarked one. See e.g. p. 120 onwards in the book I've cited above.

    Perhaps linguists should start using different terms, given the results of her research.

    By the way, you can't necessarily assume that ordinary words and names have the same accent. For example, the word "bakken" (definite singular form of "bakke") has accent 2, but the surname "Bakken" has accent 1 in my eastern dialect (but may have accent 2 in other regions).
    I'm trying to remember that. In that specific case, I wouldn't necessarily assume that they have the same toneme as I'm not sure of the etymology of the latter word. The first bakken is very easy as it's bakke and a -n which doesn't change the original toneme.

    This looks weird in Eastern Norwegian, where most people would say and write "-øya". "-øyen" is rarely used outside of Bergen.
    True. My mistake.
     
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