Vowel Harmony Loss in West Rumelian Turkish

Andrew Dombrowski


This paper provides a quantitative analysis of the breakdown of vowel harmony in the West Rumelian Turkish dialect spoken in Ohrid, Macedonia, in which harmony no longer exists as a productive process. Disharmony and variable allomorphy are shown to characterize all levels of the lexicon to a degree that cannot be explained as the cumulative result of known sound changes and the introduction of disharmonic loanwords. However, it is also shown that statistically significant vowel harmony is observable in the lexicon on the level of bisyllabic sequences. On the basis of this evidence, it is argued that vowel harmony breakdown in Ohrid Turkish is the result of grammatical interference from Macedonian and Albanian.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.3765/exabs.v0i0.531