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Tsing Hua Journal of Chinese Studies
ISSN 0577-9170; DOI 10.6503/THJCS


David Strand, Rickshaw Beijing: City People and Politics in the 1920s

Vol. 20 No. 1   6/1990    


David Strand, Rickshaw Beijing: City People and Politics in the 1920s


Jan W. Huebner


Book Review







Key words


 This is a study if the sound change that occurred in Jian’ou, a northern Min dialect. It is based on a rime book titled Jianzhou Bayin (A.D. 1795) supplemented in the rime book shows complicated developments of finals. The complexity in final systems can be attributed to the accretion of phonological strains over centuries of dialect contact as well as system-internal developments. In this paper I propose a new methodology to arrive at a unified account. Min dialects have long been known to preserve the relic forms of Old Chinese. Instead of relying solely on the Middle Chinese (i.e. Qieyun) system I use phonetic compounds (i.e. xiesheng) and the Old Chinese system as major frames of reference in tracing the evolution of finals in Jian’ou. An attempt is also made to date various stages of the development in the light of previous studies of the evolution of rime patterns. This new approach has turned up many interesting results: a revelation a revelation of Min-unique traits of finals, the great vowel shift in the colloquial layer, an insight into the interaction between internal development and contact-induced change, and lexical diffusion as exhibited in the on-going change of competing finals. 



Author: Jan W. Huebner
Genre: Article
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