Serbian-Albanian language contacts and two types of phonological systems in the Balkan languages
Српско-албански језички додири и два типа фонолошких система у балканским језицима
AuthorsStanišić, Vanja S.
Article (Published version)
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Phonological systems of the Balkan languages do not correspond to the Balkan language union borders, which can be explained by the difference between "intensive" (morphosyntactic) and "extensive" (phonological) language unions. In this case, we are dealing with the entrance of the Balkan languages into a wide transitional zone, stretching along the borders of East and Central Europe, and with the coinciding of their phonological systems with the system of Slavic languages known as vowel and consonant types. The same classification into two phonological systems exists in the Balkans too, and between them there are also two transitional borderlines. As known, the mediopalatal order of the "Macedonian" type [k', g', n', ľ] (q, gj, nj, l) has been generalized in both the standard Albanian language and most of the Albanian dialects. Albanian [k', g', n', ľ] are, just like their Macedonian counterparts, semi-emancipated palatal correlates of basic [k, g, n, l], as proved by examples of their... positional dephonologization and dialectal hardening /n'/ > /n/ [n%], when followed by front vowels. Both semi-soft [n%] and typically Albanian lateral opposition [ł-ŀ] confirm a palatal correlation of these phonemes existing also in the neighboring Serbian dialects. Albanian has undoubtedly affected the rise of these features, be it through an unilateral influence or merely through supporting different phonological development in these old-shtokavian dialects. On the other hand, the same could be said for the affrication of palatovelars [k', g'] > [č, ʒ(], which except in south-west region between Ishmi and Shkumbin, Elbasan and Tirana is present in all other branches of the Ghegian dialect. Wide distribution of this phenomenon excludes the possibility of one-sided Serbian influence while its character – reduction of palatovelars [k', g'] (q, gj) and affricates [č, ʒ(] (ç, xh) to one semi-soft affricate pair – has a typological and structural parallel in the Timok region [č, ʒ(] (ч-џ) and reveals a transitional character of this phenomenon, which is undoubtedly related to the phonological system governing the Serbian language. It is well known that, the simplification of palatal pairs was a reciprocal process and it spread to the neighboring Serbian dialects. This simplification is a strong indicator of transitional character of this zone which stretches between semi-emancipated palatal order [k', g'], governing the greater part of the Albanian language territory, and the emancipated palatal order [ć, ʒ(] (ћ, ђ), characterizing the Serbian phonological system.
Fonološki sistemi balkanskih jezika ne podudaraju se s granicama balkanskog jezičkog saveza, što se može objasniti razlikom između "intenzivnih" (morfosintaksičkih) i "ekstenzivnih" (fonoloških) jezičkih saveza. U ovom slučaju reč je o ulaženju balkanskih jezika u široku zonu prelaznosti koja prolazi granicom istočne i srednje Evrope i uklapanju njihovih fonoloških sistema u podelu slovenskih jezika na jezike vokalskog i konsonantskog tipa.