Vowel Harmony in Trabzon Turkish

Nese Demir


Little is known about patterns of vowel harmony change in language contact situations. Trabzon Turkish (TT), which is spoken in the North East of Turkey and has a language contact history with (Pontic) Greek, Armenian, and Laz, provides such a context. This study investigates vowel harmony in TT and compares it with Standard Turkish (ST). Based on a quantitative analysis derived from a corpus of written texts in TT, this study shows how TT exhibits partial vowel harmony. TT displays a reduced amount of vowel harmony compared to ST, which suggest that TT might have experienced decay. Additional findings of this study indicate that vowels are influenced by following adjacent consonants, some suffixes have fixed forms with non-alternating vowels, but linear harmony decay across the word is not observed.


partial vowel harmony; non-standard Turkish; language contact

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.3765/ptu.v5i1.4772

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