Phonemic status of Bangla nasal vowels: A corpus study

Keywords: Nasal vowels, Phonemic status, Bangla/Bengali, Text corpus


This study investigated the phonemic status of the nasal vowels in Bangla (aka Bengali). It has been claimed for decades that all the seven monophthongal oral vowels in Bangla have phonemically contrastive nasal counterparts; however, an in-depth investigation of the status of nasality for all the vowels is lacking in the current literature. With a phoneme dictionary build from a text corpus of 8 (eight) million word-tokens and about 275 thousand word-types, this study investigated whether all the oral vowels have phonemically contrastive nasal vowels. Findings revealed that only five of the seven monophthongal vowels form phonemically contrastive relationships with their nasal counterparts; nasality in /æ/ and /ɔ/ are not contrastive phonemically.


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How to Cite
ISLAM, M. J. (2018). Phonemic status of Bangla nasal vowels: A corpus study. Acta Linguistica Asiatica, 8(2), 51-62.
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