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zompist bboard • View topic - Phonoaesthetics

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 Post subject: Phonoaesthetics
PostPosted: Fri Jan 04, 2013 3:07 pm 
Niš
Niš

Joined: Mon Jul 09, 2012 9:21 pm
Posts: 12
As many of you know, it is often said that "cellar door" is said to be the most beautiful phrase in English without regard to spelling or meaning. First of all, what makes {sɛ.lə.dɔː] or [sɛ.lɚ.dɔː] euphonic or phonetically aesthetic? Secondly, how could we, as conlangers, use this to our advantage to keep our conlangs sounding beautiful?


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 Post subject: Re: Phonoaesthetics
PostPosted: Fri Jan 04, 2013 3:16 pm 
Avisaru
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I haven't got much to say about this except for: A conlang never ends up sounding how you intended it to.

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 Post subject: Re: Phonoaesthetics
PostPosted: Fri Jan 04, 2013 3:26 pm 
Smeric
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Last edited by Aurora Rossa on Fri Jan 04, 2013 4:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Phonoaesthetics
PostPosted: Fri Jan 04, 2013 3:57 pm 
Lebom
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 Post subject: Re: Phonoaesthetics
PostPosted: Fri Jan 04, 2013 4:02 pm 
Niš
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 Post subject: Re: Phonoaesthetics
PostPosted: Fri Jan 04, 2013 4:25 pm 
Avisaru
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Last edited by 2+3 clusivity on Fri Jan 04, 2013 4:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Phonoaesthetics
PostPosted: Fri Jan 04, 2013 4:28 pm 
Avisaru
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My own aesthetic sense is quite different from that of Tolkien's, so it's certainly not universal even if common to prefer soft phones.

Phones I quite like: (x-sampa)
k m v z x E

Phones I dislike:
b p w u 2 h

I'm not sure what the pattern here is, if there is any. I do tend to really like voiced fricatives of any sort though.


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 Post subject: Re: Phonoaesthetics
PostPosted: Fri Jan 04, 2013 4:32 pm 
Niš
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 Post subject: Re: Phonoaesthetics
PostPosted: Fri Jan 04, 2013 4:39 pm 
Avisaru
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My "criteria" are just pointing out that asthetics are subjective.

My ideal, for what it is worth would be:

p, t, c, k
b, d, j
ʃ, h
ʒ
r
l

i, ĭ, ĩ, u, ŭ, ũ
e ẽ, ă, o, õ
ɛ, ɛ̃, ɔ, ɔ̃
a, ã


I'm really not sure whether "cellar door" is that beautiful objectively considering that english speakers alone have such ranging variations.


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 Post subject: Re: Phonoaesthetics
PostPosted: Fri Jan 04, 2013 4:42 pm 
Niš
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Agreed


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 Post subject: Re: Phonoaesthetics
PostPosted: Fri Jan 04, 2013 4:49 pm 
Avisaru
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Joined: Tue Jul 25, 2006 10:12 pm
Posts: 402
I reject the premise of the question.


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 Post subject: Re: Phonoaesthetics
PostPosted: Fri Jan 04, 2013 5:26 pm 
Niš
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 Post subject: Re: Phonoaesthetics
PostPosted: Fri Jan 04, 2013 5:43 pm 
Avisaru
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my own "cellar door" would probably be something like "Krakatoa".


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 Post subject: Re: Phonoaesthetics
PostPosted: Fri Jan 04, 2013 11:38 pm 
Lebom
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 Post subject: Re: Phonoaesthetics
PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2013 2:41 am 
Lebom
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 Post subject: Re: Phonoaesthetics
PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2013 3:05 am 
Sanci
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Location: Elezai
I find /v/ and ejectives to the sexiest sounds to dip into my pallet. but labials are just icky and gross.


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 Post subject: Re: Phonoaesthetics
PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2013 3:24 am 
Lebom
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Joined: Sun Apr 15, 2012 4:27 pm
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For me, the most "beautiful" sounds are /ɤ/ and /æ/, and nasalized laterals (I particularly love the retroflex one as it sounds so resonant).

The last one I haven't seen in any conlangs, while the former two are generally rare (in both conlangs and natlangs - I have included both in Proto-Ginösic).

I personally think Tolkien's Elvish languages sound too much like Latin. Especially Quenya.


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 Post subject: Re: Phonoaesthetics
PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2013 6:41 am 
Sanno
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But the river tripped on her by and by, lapping
as though her heart was brook: Why, why, why! Weh, O weh
I'se so silly to be flowing but I no canna stay!


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 Post subject: Re: Phonoaesthetics
PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2013 7:00 am 
Sanno
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But the river tripped on her by and by, lapping
as though her heart was brook: Why, why, why! Weh, O weh
I'se so silly to be flowing but I no canna stay!


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 Post subject: Re: Phonoaesthetics
PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2013 7:08 am 
Lebom
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Meh, then I'm wrong. Not that I find any of Tolkien's languages particularly harsh. Too polysyllabic, not enough consonant clusters.

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"It is quite certain, in particular, that I have always been insane." ~ Aleister Crowley

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 Post subject: Re: Phonoaesthetics
PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2013 3:41 pm 
Lebom
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I personally find the way Russian and German sound very appealing, what with the complex clusters of consonants, the way everything fits together; like a complex piece of music performed with great skill. On the other hand, Māori, with its relatively simple and elegant phonology and phonotactics, is beautiful to me in its own way; a tune that's not technically difficult or complex, but simply beautiful. There is not a single standard of beauty, even in one person.

As for individual phones, ts/dz and pf/bv have always appealed to me, but tʃ/dʒ, not as much. f/v, ɸ/β, and of course x are cool; ʁ I don't mind; h is okay (but recently, I discovered word-final h, and that's... pretty cool). Though it might be my English bias, θ/ð have always sounded nice to me. Dentals (t̪/d̪, n̪, l̪) have really grown on me.

However, I think that a phonology is more than the sum of its phones; it's the way it's put together that makes it sound the way it does. So I include sounds that are "ugly" to me sometimes, because when I look at the phonology as a whole, it sounds right.


Last edited by Buran on Sat Jan 05, 2013 8:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Phonoaesthetics
PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2013 5:36 pm 
Smeric
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 Post subject: Re: Phonoaesthetics
PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2013 10:11 pm 
Avisaru
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satisfaction-DEF.SG-LOC live.PERFECTIVE-1P.INCL but work-DEF.SG-PRIV satisfaction-DEF.PL.NOM weakeness-DEF.PL-DAT only lead-FUT-3P


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 Post subject: Re: Phonoaesthetics
PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2013 10:28 pm 
Smeric
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 Post subject: Re: Phonoaesthetics
PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2013 11:09 pm 
Lebom
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Joined: Sun Apr 15, 2012 4:27 pm
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This seems kind of strange, considering that it's Zompist BBoard.

And yes, I love the /b/ in the third person singular present forms of Estonian verbs (like kirjutab "writes" or tuleb "comes"). It just sounds so exotic, probably since I am used to third-person forms ending in some sort of coronal or just a vowel, as in Indo-European and Dravidian languages.


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