Lexeme and speech syllables in English and Hindi. A case for syllable structure

Dinesh Ramoo*, Cristina Romani, Andrew Olson

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Published conference outputChapter


Syllables are universal structures in articulation, but current speech production models disagree on whether syllables play a role only during the organization of phonemes during production or whether they play a more central role. Arguments against having syllables structure within the mental lexicon are resyllabification (phonemes moving from their lexical syllabic position to another syllable during connected speech, and the storage costs of having such information in the lexicon. This study used speech corpus analysis to quantify the resyllabification rates of English and Hindi as well as the storage costs of 3 prominent speech production models. The results show that English has a higher resyllabification rate than Italian or Hindi and that models that only use post-lexical syllabification actually have larger storage costs compared to models that store syllabic information. This indicates that having syllable structures within the mental lexicon might be a plausible scenario.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationTrends in South Asian Linguistics
EditorsGhanshyam Sharma, John J. Lowe
PublisherWalter De Gruyter
Number of pages48
ISBN (Electronic)9783110753066
ISBN (Print)9783110752939
Publication statusPublished - 8 Nov 2021

Publication series

NameTrends in Linguistics. Studies and Monographs [TiLSM]
PublisherDe Gruyter Mouton


  • South Asian Linguistics
  • Syntax
  • Semantics
  • Phonology


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