Abstract

The word final phonology of Lardil was brought to the attention of linguists by Ken Hale in the 1960s and since then certain properties of the data have led it to occupy a privileged position, in a canon of data sets against which new theoretical proposals are frequently tested. Several seminal arguments for new and high-profile phonological theories are now based at least in part upon analyses of Hale’s data set. After reviewing what is of such interest in Lardil, a body of data is assembled which alters our understanding of the empirical facts and theoretical implications of Lardil phonology. Hale’s process of Laminalization is reanalyzed as Apicalization; constrained lexical exceptions are found with respect to Apocope, Apicalization and Truncation; and a process of Raising is identified. A discussion of the systematicity of these new data, and of their demonstrable antiquity leads to the conclusion that future formal analyses of the language must account not only for already well-known properties of the data, but for the existence of multiple, active patterns that apply selectively throughout the lexicon.

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