Lexical diffusion of sound change in Korean and Sino-Korean
Edited by Sang-Oak Lee, Hyung-Soo Kim and Ik-sang Eom
李相亿 金烱秀 严翼相 主编
Although many studies have been done on the subject of lexical diffusion in a number of different languages since the introduction of the theory by William S-Y. Wang in the late nineteen sixties, there was no in-depth analysis of lexical diffusion specifically dealing with Korean. Although the theory has been well known in Korean historical linguistics circles, and many Korean historical phonologists have accepted it in spirit and referred to it in their articles and books, the theory has never been proven to be viable in a hard analysis. This monograph is an attempt to fill that gap that has long existed in Korean historical linguistics.
The work presented here was made possible through the Korea Research Foundation’s grant for ‘Joint Research with Distinguished Scholars’. Professors Sang-Oak Lee (Principal Investigator), Hyung-Soo Kim(Co-researcher), and Ik-sang Eom(Co-researcher) each has done the research individually in consultation with Professor William S-Y. Wang under the project title of ‘The Lexical Diffusion of Sound Change in Korean and Sino-Korean’. Although the three researchers operated independently with their own research topics, they all had the aim of applying Wang’s theory of lexical diffusion to the analysis of sound change in Korean.
Sang-Oak Lee’s article, ‘An Analysis of Lexical Diffusion in Korean’ has looked into the types of changes that have occurred in 158 adverbial forms from the 15th century, which is the time when the Korean Alphabet was invented, to the late 19th century. The adverbials had been singled out for his research because this category is free of inflection, which ensures lack of any paradigmatic influences such as leveling and analogy. The work had to deal with 408 Korean historical texts spanning around 450 years, a daunting task by itself. The article shows some of these rules in tabular forms. Among these, vowel shortening most clearly has shown the gradual spread of a phonological rule by lexical diffusion. Lee in conclusion has proposed positing the variant form (marked as V) at an intermediate stage in lexical diffusion.
Hyung-Soo Kim’s article, ‘The Lexical and Phonological Diffusion of Umlaut in Korean Dialects’ has analyzed how the phonological process of umlaut has spread itself among Korean dialects, using the ten-volume dialect dictionary, ‘Hankwuk Pangen Caryocip’, as the data source. Kim has calculated the degree of umlaut among 9 South Korean dialects with regard to the five [+back] vowels that are fronted by i or y in the following syllable and has found that in addition to the random spread predicted by the principle of lexical diffusion, there is also systematic orderly spread of umlaut among the target vowels. Kim interprets this result as an example of phonological diffusion first proposed by Matthew Chen. The analysis of Korean umlaut shows that this phonological diffusion can occur not only through extension of the rule’s environment as Chen and Wang envisioned but also as a result of incorporating a larger group of phonological elements under the rule’s domain.
While the first two articles deal with sound changes in indigenous Korean, the third article by Ik-sang Eom deals with palatalization of Sino-Korean, Korean pronunciation of Chinese characters. Palatalization of Middle Chinese retroflex stop and alveolar stop initials in Sino-Korean (*t-, *t- > c-) has been known as one of the most peculiar changes in Sino-Korean initials because these initials underwent different changes in Chinese. Through a thorough observation of the mechanism of Sino-Korean palatalization from the fifteenth century to the twentieth century, Eom concludes that Sino-Korean palatalization was an internal change within Korean and diffused across the Sino-Korean lexicon in a gradual manner for centuries. The results thus support the lexical diffusion model of sound change.
It is hoped that this monograph will not only contribute to a further understanding of the theory of lexical diffusion but the three articles in their own way will provide an opportunity to re-examine it in light of their new findings in Korean. If nothing else, we believe that the works are valuable in showing the ways of processing enormous amount of Korean and Sino-Korean data on the computer. We thank Professor Wang for recommending the work to be published in the Journal of Chinese Linguistics monograph series as well as the Korea Research Foundation for all the support given to the project.
September 20, 2003
To sum up the result of this quantitative investigation to the Neogrammarian controversy in a study of lexical diffusion in Korean, we could point out two findings. The first is that as we will see in section 2, lexical items change not to a single reflex but often to a group of diverse reflexes. Language change often include stages of variants of different quantity appearing gradually and unifying into one final form. Such would be what we would like to describe in lexical diffusion. The second is that as we can see in examples in section 2, the orthography in many cases are hyper-corrections imitating earlier forms, which therefore is often removed from actual pronunciation. This is especially common in section 3 where we have seen that the orthography in the variants that have been classified as being counter to the rule is so detached from the actual pronunciation that it is difficult to capture the main current of the change. But such phenomena should not be regarded as being in conflict with the theory of change by lexical diffusion. The reason is that the theory of lexical diffusion was proposed to mend the contradiction in the Neogrammarian thesis that change occurs abruptly without exception. Data with such counter-examples are therefore more appropriate for testing the theory.
Subject Keywords 主题词
Lexical Diffusion 词汇扩散 Korean 朝鲜语（韩国语）Adverb 副词 Variant 变体 Quantitative Linguistics 计量语言学 Hypercorrection 矫枉过正
Hyung-Soo Kim 金烱秀
In this research, I analyze how umlaut has diffused itself across Korean dialects, using the ten-volume Hankwuk Pangen Caryocip (A Corpus Dictionary of Korean dialects) as the database. Following the theory of lexical diffusion developed over the years in Wang (1969), Chen (1977), Chen and Wang (1975), and Wang and Lien (1993), I first show that application of umlaut in Korean dialects is not regular in the Neogrammarian sense, admitting many exceptions. I then turn to the five [+back] vowels that are fronted by i or y in the following syllable. These target vowels show great dialectal variation in their degree of umlaut, which I have tabulated to see if we can find some measure of regularity. It turns out that this variation in application of umlaut is not random: the vowel a consistently shows the highest rate across dialects, while the vowel u generally shows a low rate of application. This result is then interpreted under the purview of the so-called phonological diffusion proposed by Chen (1977), who, viewing phonological change as a rule schema that gradually expands its scope by extending its environment, has called for future research into the phenomenon. The application of umlaut in Korean shows that this phonological diffusion occurs through extension not only of the rule’s environment but also of its elements.
本论文根据《韩国方言资料集》，分析并讨论前高元音逆同化(umlaut)以何种形式扩散到韩国方言当中的语音现象。通过研究，本论文得岀以新语法学派的理论为基础，前高元音逆同化现象在韩国方言当中为不规则的语流音变。而且位于前舌高元音 /i/ 或 /y/ 前的五个后舌元音，其语流音变在韩国语的各种方言当中产生不同形式的变化。还有在韩国语的各种方言当中 /a/ 元音的变化最多，而 /u/ 元音的变化最小。本研究结果进一步证实了Chen (1977) 的语流音变因语音条件的多样化所产生的变体也随之增加的观点。韩国方言里的前高元音逆同化现象不仅体现了词汇扩散理论，而且体现岀随着语言变化条件的多样化而产生的词汇扩散现象。
Subject Keywords 主题词
Lexical Diffusion 词汇扩散 Phonological Diffusion 音韵扩散 Korean Dialect 韩国方言 Umlaut 元音变化
This article examines Korean pronunciation of Chinese characters with Middle Chinese retroflex stop (Zhi) and alveolar stop (Duan) initials from the fifteenth century through the twentieth century. The palatalization of Middle Chinese retroflex stop initials was noticeable in Sino-Korean as early as 1448 although it had become more apparent by 1720. This change seems to have been completed, at the latest, by 1751. Middle Chinese alveolar stop initials also underwent palatalization in Sino-Korean from 1751. The active change, however, took place from the late nineteenth century and was completed by the beginning of the twentieth century. Through a close observation of the mechanism of Sino-Korean palatalization, this study demonstrates that Sino-Korean palatalization was an internal change within Korean and diffused across the Sino-Korean lexicon in a gradual manner for centuries. Accordingly, this article concludes that Sino-Korean palatalization complies with the scenario of sound change that the Lexical Diffusionists propose.
Subject Keywords 主题词
Lexical Diffusion 词汇扩散 Sino-Korean 韩国汉字音 Palatalization 颚化 Sound Change 音变 Middle Chinese 中古汉语 Neogrammarian Hypothesis 新语法学派假设