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https://www.duolingo.com/LICA98

i at the end of the word

LICA98
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so I heard that if a word ends in consonant+i the i is not pronounced and palatalizes the previous letter, but why does that not happen in words like fi or și?

1 year ago

9 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/potestasity
potestasity
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That is not always true, there are words that end in a consonant+i where the i does not indicate palatalization. One large class of examples that comes to mind are verbs like "a dormi", "a greși", "a găsi" etc.

In the case you described, the explanation is simple: the palatalization doesn't count as a vowel so, because every syllable needs a vowel, you can be certain that words like fi and și have a vocalic /i/.

There's also pairs of homographs that only differ in the last "i" (left is vowel, right palatalization):
a dormi (to sleep) - tu dormi (you sleep)
deși (although) - deși (thick/dense - masculine plural)
a mări (to enlarge) - mări (seas)
etc.

A long time ago, Romanian distinguished between these words with an extra letter "ĭ":
a dormi - tu dormĭ

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SamuelCristea

Wow! That so interesting. I never knew that Romanian used have an extra letter to distinguish that sound, but what happened to it? Why is it not used anymore?

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/potestasity
potestasity
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In 1904 there was an orthographic reform that removed a bunch of letters, in order to simplify the alphabet. I have no idea why people thought it was a good idea to introduce this ambiguity: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Romanian_alphabet#Obsolete_letters

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/StuartM.

I am not a native speaker but allow me to comment. Romanian infinitives also have the final "i" distinctly pronounced. I would think that "fi" and "și" are such short words that you have to pronounce the vowel. "fffff" or "șșșșș" would sound pretty funny, wouldn't they? I think it is a cool feature of Romanian when the almost silent "i" at the end of the second person plural becomes pronounced before a direct object pronoun. "Scuzaţi" (scuzahts) becomes "scuzaţi-mă" (scuzahtsee-muh). There are just so many cool features of the Romanian language that are almost unique to it. The definite article is attached at the end of the noun!!!! That is so great! I speak German and it is just nuts to have to think of a vocabulary word, but first decide on its gender and case before saying the right definite article and finally the damn word you wanted to get out of your mouth in the first place! Romanian has the order right in my opinion: first the noun, then the definite article.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/LICA98
LICA98
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well that's not that unique, for example Swedish also has it (def article at the end)

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/StuartM.

Yes, yes, I said "almost unique." Besides Scandinavian languages, some Balkan languages have this feature. But if one has been mainly exposed to learning Latin languages, one would be surprised by this "suffix" article position, until, that is, one remembers that Latin itself followed this pattern with its elaborate declension of nouns.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/LICA98
LICA98
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not "almost unique" then if so many languages have it...

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/StuartM.

How many of those languages represented by the icons after your user ID have a suffix article position and what percent of the total icons are they?

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/LICA98
LICA98
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4/26 (around 15%)

1 year ago