Patterns of consonant deletion in the word-internal onset position: Evidence from spontaneous Seoul Korean speech

Kim, Jungsun;Yun, Weonhee;Kang, Ducksoo

  • Received : 2016.02.11
  • Accepted : 2016.03.14
  • Published : 2016.03.31


This study examined the deletion of onset consonant in the word-internal structure in spontaneous Seoul Korean speech. It used the dataset of speakers in their 20s extracted from the Korean Corpus of Spontaneous Speech (Yun et al., 2015). The proportion of deletion of word-internal onset consonants was analyzed using the linear mixed-effects regression model. The factors that promoted the deletion of onsets were primarily the types of consonants and their phonetic contexts. The results showed that onset deletion was more likely to occur for a lenis velar stop [k] than the other consonants, and in the phonetic contexts, when the preceding vowel was a low central vowel [a]. Moreover, some speakers tended to more frequently delete onset consonants (e.g., [k] and [n]) than other speakers, which reflected individual differences. This study implies that word-internal onsets undergo a process of gradient reduction within individuals' articulatory strategies.


deletion;reduction;word-internal onset consonant;spontaneous Seoul Korean speech


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Supported by : National Research Foundation of Korea