A Stratal OT Account of Word Stress in the Mehri of Bit Thuwar [chapter]

Janet C. E. Watson, Abdullah Musallam al-Mahri
2018 Re-engaging Comparative Semitic and Arabic Studies  
In this paper, we provide a synchronic account of word stress in the Modern South Arabian language, Mehri, as spoken by members of the Bit Thuwar tribe. The data is taken from the first author's own fieldwork working in Central Dhofar with members of the Bit Thuwar sub-tribes-Bit Iqh r in Rabkut and parts of the mountains that receive the monsoon rains, and Bit mawsh in Dhahbun-with reference, where appropriate, to Johnstone (1987). 3 This paper is a significant expansion and a partial revision
more » ... a partial revision of the short discussion on word stress in Watson (2012: 34-35). We begin with a brief background to Mehri within Modern South Arabian. We then discuss word stress patterns in Mehri, following Hayes' (1995) metrical stress theory; here we show that Mehri is a 1 We thank the Leverhulme Trust for project grant: RPG-2012RPG- -599 (2013RPG- -2016, during which time the research for this paper was produced. We also thank Saeed al-Mahri and Ali al-Mahri for comments during the writing of the paper, and Musallam Hazmay al-Mahri for providing some of the data. 2 The abbreviations used in this paper are: dim diminutive; f. feminine; fpl feminine plural; fs feminine singular; ind indicative; m. masculine; mpl masculine plural; ms masculine singular; pl. plural; s. singular; subj subjunctive. 3 Contra descriptions of an 'Omani Mehri' made by Bendjaballah (2017) , Bendjaballah & Ségéral (2014 , 2017 , Rubin (2010 Rubin ( , 2018 and others, the Mahrah themselves do not distinguish varieties of Mehri on national grounds, but rather identify language varieties according to tribal affiliation and geographical location.
doi:10.2307/j.ctvcm4fp0.8 fatcat:7j7paz47obg2dn4t23465qcdvy