Broad and Slender

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Broad and Slender in Phonology

Broad consonants either have no secondary articulation or are slightly velarized. Roughly speaking, slender consonants are palatalized, although this breaks down with the labials.

Broad and Slender in Orthography

In the Gaelic orthography, being broad is indicated by the consonant being adjacent to one of the broad orthographic vowels <a, o, u> . Slender consonants are always adjacent to either <i> or <e> .

The Spelling Rule

Broad with Broad, Slender with Slender Caol ri Caol 's Leathann ri Leathann Exceptions:

  • -sa
  • -se
  • esan

Attenuation (Slenderization)

Common morphological process. -Mark plural and Genitive of some Masculine nouns -Mark vocative singular of Masculine nouns. -Involved as part of other kinds of morphological suffixation.

  • insert an i before a broad final consonants
  • change a digraph vowel, e.g. ea --> i

See Also

External Links


Fisher, Muriel (2004) Scottish Gaelic: Level 1. Each-Mara Publications.