A Phonemic Feature Tree for English (2)

I've made some adjustments to my tree of features for describing the phonemes of English.

               obs
              +   -
           whis   nas
          +   -   +  -
         /  occ  lab cons
        /  +   - + - +   -
       / vel   | m n pal  \
   glot +  -   |    +  -   \
  +   - g lab  | dark lab   \
  h occ   + -  | +  - + -   low
   +  -   b d  | r  y w l  +   -
 vel  dent     |         pro   high
+  -  +   -    dent     +  -   +  -
k lab lab dark +   -    a dark i pro
  + - + - +  - lab dark   +  -  +  -
  p t f T S  s + - +  -   o  A  e dark
               v D Z  z           +  -
                                  u  U

It's still just 14 features, though a couple of them have changed.

  1. cons = consonantal, tense
  2. dark = retracted tongue, half-round
  3. dent = dental
  4. glot = glottal
  5. high = high tongue, close
  6. lab = labial
  7. low = low tongue, open
  8. nas = nasal
  9. obs = obstruent
  10. occ = occlusive, stop, plosive
  11. pal = palatal
  12. pro = protracted tongue, front
  13. vel = velar
  14. whis = whispered, voiceless

The following list shows which feature values require additional feature values to be supplied before a phoneme can be identified. The tree above is simply a graphical representation of these dependencies, though it must be noted that something must require a value for [obs(truent)] in order to get the ball rolling.

  • +cons > pal?
  • -cons > low?
  • +dent > lab?
  • -dent > pal?
  • -glot > occ?
  • -high > pro?
  • +low > pro?
  • -low > high?
  • +nas > lab?
  • -nas > cons?
  • +obs > mute?
  • -obs > nas?
  • +occ > vel?
  • -occ > dent?
  • +pal > dark?
  • -pal > lab?
  • -pro > dark?
  • -vel > lab?
  • +whis > glot?
  • -whis > occ?

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