Word of the Day

Thursday, December 11, 2008

ablaut

\ABH-lout\ , noun;
1.
the systematic substitution of one root vowel sound for another in different inflectional forms or derivatives of a word, as in ring, rang, rung
Quotes:
Any discussion of the grammar and phonology of Proto-Indo-European (PIE) would be incomplete without reference to Ablaut (German for 'vowel gradation').
-- Douglas Simms, University of Texas at Austin
Origin:
by 1849, from German Ablaut, literally, "off-sound," from ab "off" + Laut "sound, tone," from Old High German hlut. It was popularized by Jacob Grimm.
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