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ALPHABET OF NATURE.

THE

ALPHABET OF NATURE;

OR,

CONTRIBUTIONS TOWARDS A MORE ACCURATE ANALYSIS

AND SYMBOLIZATION OF SPOKEN SOUNDS; WITH SOME ACCOUNT OF THE PRINCIPAL PHONETICAL

ALPHABETS HITHERTO PROPOSED.

BY

ALEXANDER JOHN ELLIS, B.A.,

FELLOW OF THE CAMBRIDGE PHILOSOPHICAL SOCIETY, AND FORMERLY

SCHOLAR OF TRINITY COLLEGE, CAMBRIDGE ;

HONORARY MEMBER OF THE PHONOGRAPHIC CORRESPONDING SOCIETY.

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE PHONOTYPIC JOURNAL,

JUNE, 1844-JUNE, 1845.

LONDON:
S. BAGSTER AND SONS, 15, PATERNOSTER ROW.

BATH:
ISAAC PITMAN, PHONOGRAPHIC INSTITUTION, 5, NELSON PLACE.

1845.

BATH: PRINTED BY JOHN AND JAMES KEENE, KINGSMEAD-STREET.

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CONTENTS

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PART I. ANALYSIS OF SPOKEN SOUNDS.

CHAPTER 1. ON SOUND IN GENERAL

Sound a sensation, 1. Caused by undulations, 2. Sir J. Herschell's explanation

of undulations, 28. “Sound travels,” 9. Its velocity, 10, Musical Sounds,

11-15. Classification of instruments according to the mode in which vibration

is produced, 15. Sir J. Herschell's description of the organs of voice, 16–18.

Place of Phonetics among the sciences, 19.

CHAPTER 2. ON ARTICULATE SPEECH IN GENERAL

pp. 19–22

Phenomenon of articulation, 19, 20. Voice and its modifications, 21. Three

kinds of action of the organs, and two modes in which each takes effect, 21.

Etymology, 22.

CHAPTER 3. ON THE VOWELS IN GENERAL

Three Phenician vowels, 22. Character and letter, 23. Vowels form a scale, and

are distinguished by contrast, 23, 24. Their number infinite, 24. Analysis of

sound is an analysis of particular individual sensation, 25. Use of speaking ma-

chines, 25, 26. Professor Wheatstone's definition of a vowel, 26. Professor

Willis's paper

on the vowel sounds," 27–35. Professor Wheatstone on the

identity of vowel qualities and multiple resonance, 36–39.

CHAPTER 4. ON THE CONSONANTS IN GENERAL

Consonants properly an ajustment of the parts of the mouth, 39. Consonant charac-

ters anciently included the voice, 40. Plan adopted in modern alphabets, 41.

Can a consonant sound by itself ? 41. Whispered and spoken consonants, 42.

Dr. Orpen's opinion of syllables without vowels, 42,43. Difficulties attending

the analysis of spoken sounds, 44.

CHAPTER 5. ON THE VOWELS IN DETAIL .

pp. 44–73

Section 1. On the Long Vowels, 44-53. The seven vowels, i, ē, a, 7, , o, ū,

45. Why so arranged, 45. Distributed into three classes, 46. Mr. Cull's opi-

nion, 46. Dr. Orpen's account of the mechanism by which these vowels are pro-

duced, 46–48. Intermediate vowels, 48. î, 48. e, à,49. , ę, ů, 50. Vowel

circle, 50. Linear arrangement, 51. Table of Long Vowels, 51,52. General

vowel notation, 53.

Section 2. On the Short Vowels, 53-60. How distinguished from the long, 54.

Table of Short Vowels, 54,55. Different from unaccented long vowels, 55. On

the correspondence between long and short vowels, 56. Opinion of grammarians

as to the relation between long and short vowels, 57. Distinguishing character-

istics of the full vowels, 58. What is the sound in the last syllables of able,

schism, burden, ochre ? 59-60.

Section 3. On the Stopped Vowels, 61–71. There are as many different varie-

ties of every vowel as there are consonants, and vice versâ, 61. Analysis of stop-

ped vowels, 61,62. They can not be pronounced without the aid of a consonant,

63. How related to full vowels, 63,64. Combined Table of Long, Short, and

Stopped Vowels, 64. Consideration of each stopped vowel singly, 65–67.

Grammatical correspondence of long and stopped vowels in English, 67. Does a

stopped vowel occur before r ? 68. Relation between short and stopped vowels,

69. The same symbol may represent long and short vowels, but not short and

stopped, 70. Dr. Rapp's notation, 71. Quantity of stopped vowels, 71.

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