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Rasmus Rask Puzzle IV
A New Hope

by Lila Rosa Grau

This is the fourth Rasmus Rask puzzle, devoted to the original Mr. Charming Scandinavian Linguist. The puzzle is similar to a crossword puzzle, in that there is a grid for filling in words and phrases, and clues for the ACROSS and DOWN directions. However, all the squares in a Rasmus Rask puzzle are filled with letters, and the answers to the clues may (but are not required to) overlap. Clues for a particular row or column are given together, in the order they appear in the grid. No indication of the amount of overlap between clues is given. Letters spelling out RASMUS RASK along the diagonal are given to provide a framework for filling in the answers.

Complete the puzzle and send your solutions to the editors of SpecGram by August 15th, 2012 and you could win a SpecGram magnet of your choice. The correct solution and winners, if any, will be announced in the upcoming September issue.

ACROSS
0   • Studied in prosody, along with stress and pitch
• Almost as good as a good theory
 
1 • How grad students feel in year seven
• Ottoman translators, usu. of Gk origin
 
2 • /vɑːz/, /veɪs/, and /veɪz/
• Obscene comedian Bruce
 
3 • Prefix often related to the mind
• A fancy-schmancy name for a conference
 
4 • A society for computer nerds who like to pretend they do linguistics
• May be dependent, independent, relative, subordinate, or small
• One of ‘gold’, ‘I pray’, ‘I speak’, ‘of the air’, or ‘worry’ in one or more of Basque, Catalan, Esperanto, Galician, Ido, Italian, Latin, Lithuanian, Spanish, and Swedish
 
5 • Descendant of Old English wealcan
• Famous Chinese General of Chicken
• Any of /a, ɶ, ä, ɑ, ɒ/
 
6 • A fireless tan of the infamous rood geverend
 
7 • Ancient Greek covered walkways (plural)
• Distinct from a gazelle, but named after the Zulu word for one
 
8 • A chiefly Southern US term for ‘swear’
• A form of massage that sounds like swearing
 
9 • Relating to the primitive form of a word
• Laryngealization
 
0 R 1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9 
1      A                                                        
2         S                                                 
3                M                                          
4                       U                                   
5                              S                            
6                                     R                     
7                                            A              
8                                                   S       
9                                                          K

DOWN
0   • How the French solicit replies to an invitation
• A dog’s dogs
• The academic abbrev. for Singlish
 
1   • Linguist Mary who studied Natchez and Creek
• Btwn. Lt. & Maj. in the USMC
• Steve Martin’s phavorite pharaoh
 
2   • Appropriate unit for measuring the thickness of the printed OED
• A phon. unit; this abbrev. is the first of itself in its own name
• Both Scottish and dusty
 
3   • A Dutch umlaut?
• Wernicke’s term for a nonverbal auditory hallucination
 
4   • A rhyme and synonym for clasp
• To place, set, or lay
• Primary biomedical and health research agency in the US
• Informal formulaic phatic
 
5   • Metric abbrev. for the metric equivalent of the millipaperclip
• Related to an irreducible unit of linguistic signaling
 
6   • A common form of a common verb, or some female ungulates
• An uncommon name for the ⊕ ('XOR') operator
• What you expect, given the course you are on
 
7 • An abbreviated prenatal test
• Religion or baseball, to the masses
 
8 • The holy grail of the academic linguist
• The teaching of “American” to foreigners
• Publishers of that rag, Language
 
9 • At least one
• A dialect of Mohegan-Pequot

A sample solution1 to last month’s IPAlindromes I puzzle and the winners are provided below.

1. Let’s tell!    Phonemic only. (Phonetic transcription would have different allophones of the two /t/ phonemes, the one in ‘tell’ being aspirated.)
2. Meet a team.    Phonemic only. (Aspiration, again.)
3. Rocks scar.    Phonetic for dialects that preserve post-vocalic /r/; phonemic for theories that have an underlying devoiced plural suffix.
4. Rock a car.    Phonemic only.
5. Do I? Popeye wooed.    Neither. (Aspiration messes up the phonetic IPAlindrome, and phonemically, there’s no glide between the vowels in “do I.”)
6. Sheila’s mom’s a leash.    Both.
7. I gulp Tut’s plug-eye.    Phonemic only.
8. I pee some mussy pie.    Both. (Both instances of /p/ would be aspirated, so the palindrome works both phonemically and phonetically in that regard. Some differences in vowel nasality might occur, but since some speakers nasalize all vowels within cat-throwing distance of a nasal consonant, we can probably stretch the point.)
9. Might zip; is time.    Phonemic only.
10. We kissed egg, get sick, ew!    Phonetically, differences in aspiration mess up the palindrome; phonemically, it depends on the underlying past-tense suffix.
11. Shall I sign a nice eyelash?    Both. (Again, assuming some latitude with nasalization.)
12. Cheapskate takes peach.    Phonemic only.
13. Test node nine; don’t set.    Phonemic only.
14. See, pony, we know peace.    Both.
15. Own knife? Fine, no.    Both.
16. Carry tea rack.    Both.
17. Leave steak, Kate’s veal.    Phonemic only.
18. “Now we bowl, Luke!”“Cool, Obiwan!”    Neither, alas! Phonemically, there is a sequence of two /l/ sounds in “bowl, Luke” that is not present in “Cool, Obiwan.” And the diphthong in “now” is not present in “Obiwan.” Phonetically, there is a difference in aspiration of /k/. So close! If you imagine that Obiwan is teaching Luke to play the violin, replacing bowl with bow (/bo/) yields a phonemic IPAlindrome.

The winners, as chosen by the IPAlindrome Evaluation Panel, are listed below. First and second place winners will receive SpecGram magnets of their choosing. Congrats to all!

1.Eric Chen
2.Cathy Bow
3.Adam Hesterberg
Jonathan Schlossberg (tie)
5.Fer O’Neil


1 Solutions are dialect-dependent and in some cases somewhat theory-dependent as well.

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SpecGram Vol CLXV, No 2 Contents