2013 Amsterdamer Beiträge zur älteren Germanistik  
It is well-known how hard it is to account for the diachronic development of the Germanic vowel endings. How can we, for instance, explain the phonetic gap between Protn. swestar and its ON. offshoot systir 'sister'? Is this case analogous to that of Protn. (fara)uisa, corresponding to ON. vísi 'the wise one'? What kind of Protn. unstressed final -a(-) is likely to develop into an ON. unstressed final -i(-) and what is the Protogermanic starting point? In this brief paper I will account for
more » ... ill account for such languagehistorical problems in a new way, positing that in certain phonological environments Protgerm. */ē 1 / in final syllables gave rise to Protn. */ā/, which later underwent shortening to */a/ and then weakening to */ə/, before the Viking age. Afterwards, in most of the Old Scandinavian dialects of the viking age, this vowel fell into the range of the phoneme /i/ or /e/ in final syllable, as it still does in classical ON. after the viking age.
doi:10.1163/9789401209205_004 fatcat:yolxjzuvqbarjgs6u63vo2xo4q