A COMPARATIVE PHONOLOGY STUDY OF NORTHERN-THAI IN KO KHA, LAMPANG AND TAI-LUE’S CHIANG KHAM, PAYAO
The objective of the research was to comparatively study the phonological structure of a Northern Thai dialect in Ko Kha district, Lampang province and Tai Lue in Chiang Kham district, Phayao province. The instrument used for collecting data was to interview research samples about 2,000 words from each language. The collected data was analyzed to find out consonant phonemes and vowel phonemes by using minimal pairs as well as tonemes by using Gedney's tone box, and that set of the data was used to make a comparison between the phonology of the two languages.
The comparative study shows that the Northern Thai dialect in Kho Kha district, Lampang province had 21 consonant phonemes and the consonant phonemes were single phonemes. Similarly, Thai Lue in Chiang Kham district, Phayao province had 20 consonant phonemes and the consonant phonemes were single phonemes. However, there were differences between them. The Northern Thai dialect did not have /ñ/ and had 6 consonant clusters while Thai Lue had 2 consonant clusters. In term of vowel phonemes, The Northern Thai dialect had 21 vowel phonemes and 18 of them were single vowel sounds and 3 of them were diphthongs. On the other hand, Thai Lue had 18 vowel phonemes and all of them were single vowel sounds. The two languages had 6 tonemes and the same tonal split and combination. There were only slight differences in each toneme in term of phonetics.
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