Intonation: Theory, Models, and Applications

Athens, Greece
September 18-20, 1997


Association, Alignment, and Meaning: The Tonal Sequence HL and Focus in European Portuguese

Sonia Frota

University of Lisbon, FLUL - Department of Linguistics, Cidade Universitaria, Lisboa, Portugal

This study investigates the defining features of two different nuclei in . Portuguese declarative intonation: the neutral HL and the focus HL. Confirming previous analyses, evidence is provided for the organisation of the H and L targets in bitonal accents, and not in sequences of monotonal accent and edge tone. The two bitonal nuclei are further shown to differ with respect to the alignment of the tonal targets with the segmental string, the stability of H and L alignment, and the (independence of one target alignment relative to the other. By providing evidence for a H+L*/H*+L contrast, the results contribute to the definition of the phonetic exponents of association and to the characterisation of leading and trailing tones. Further, they strengthen the argument for pitch accent structure, and for the tonal target view of intonation primes.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Frota, Sonia (1997): "Association, alignment, and meaning: the tonal sequence HL and focus in european portuguese", In INT-1997, 127-130.