THE SUBSTRATUM OF ANNOBONESE CREOLE

THE SUBSTRATUM OF ANNOBONESE CREOLE LUIS FERRAZ The substratum theory, while regarded as antiquated and oversimplified by some modern historical linguists, seems to be necessary to explain the influence of certain West African languages on the Creole Portuguese of Annobon. Features which match West African languages but no known variety of Portuguese include vowel harmony, the breaking or deletion of consonant clusters, the canonical syllable structure, palatalization of consonants, replacement of/r/ by /!/, absence of the passive transformation, the nature of negation, the copula, several aspects of word order, and several types of lexical item including ideophones. Some linguists have rejected or still completely reject the concept of the existence of substratum influences. Thus, Bloomfield wrote in 1935: There is no sense in the mystical version of the substratum theory, which attributes changes, say, in modern Germanic languages, to a "Celtic substratum" - that is, to the fact that many centuries ago, some adult Celtic-speakers acquired German speech. However, when the members of a language community acquire a new language, either as a pidgin or as a mother tongue, whether Creole or not, it is to be expected that their speech patterns will color their interpretation of the acquired language. In the Iberian http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Linguistics - An Interdisciplinary Journal of the Language Sciences de Gruyter

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Publisher
de Gruyter
Copyright
Copyright © 2009 Walter de Gruyter
ISSN
0024-3949
eISSN
1613-396X
DOI
10.1515/ling.1976.14.173.37
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

LUIS FERRAZ The substratum theory, while regarded as antiquated and oversimplified by some modern historical linguists, seems to be necessary to explain the influence of certain West African languages on the Creole Portuguese of Annobon. Features which match West African languages but no known variety of Portuguese include vowel harmony, the breaking or deletion of consonant clusters, the canonical syllable structure, palatalization of consonants, replacement of/r/ by /!/, absence of the passive transformation, the nature of negation, the copula, several aspects of word order, and several types of lexical item including ideophones. Some linguists have rejected or still completely reject the concept of the existence of substratum influences. Thus, Bloomfield wrote in 1935: There is no sense in the mystical version of the substratum theory, which attributes changes, say, in modern Germanic languages, to a "Celtic substratum" - that is, to the fact that many centuries ago, some adult Celtic-speakers acquired German speech. However, when the members of a language community acquire a new language, either as a pidgin or as a mother tongue, whether Creole or not, it is to be expected that their speech patterns will color their interpretation of the acquired language. In the Iberian

Journal

Linguistics - An Interdisciplinary Journal of the Language Sciencesde Gruyter

Published: Jan 1, 1976

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