International Symposium on Tonal Aspects of Languages
With Emphasis on Tone Languages

Beijing, China
March 28-31, 2004

The Effect of Intonation on the Citation Tones in Cantonese

Wai-Sum Lee

Department of Linguistics, The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong

The paper investigates the F0 contours of the nine citation tones [55, 33, 22, 21, 25, 23, 5, 3, 2] in Hong Kong Cantonese that occur on the test syllables in the sentence-final position in the declarative and question sentences. Results show that (i) the citation tones in the declarative context are noticeably different from the same tones in the question context; (ii) the differences between the same citation tones in the declarative context and question context are in F0 level and F0 contour; (iii) in all the cases, the F0 contours of [33, 22, 21, 25, 23, 3, 2] on the sentence-final test syllables in the question context are rising, and for the F0 contours of [55, 5], there is a slight upward deflection and a pronounced increase in F0 level; and (iv) the differences in F0 contour and F0 level between the tones in the declarative context are reduced in the question context in some cases and in other cases they have disappeared due to neutralization.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Lee, Wai-Sum (2004): "The effect of intonation on the citation tones in Cantonese", In TAL-2004, 107-110.