Foot isochrony in Estonian
Proceedings of the XIVth International Congress of Phonetic Sciences
1063 - 1066
Proceedings from the XIIth Swedish Phonetics Conference
97 - 100
Words occurring in the conversational speech of five Estonians were compared to data from list reading. The results show that the duration of Estonian disyllabic feet varies relatively little with the three degrees of quantity (short, long and overlong). This is due to the duration distribution between the syllables: the first syllable increases with the degree of quantity and the second decreases. However, the amount of isochrony is dependent on the speaking style: in conversational speech, foot duration varies more with the degree of quantity than in list reading. Moreover, in list reading the difference in foot duration between short and long quantity is greater than between long and overlong. In conversational speech this is true only for words where the bearer of the quantity contrast is a vowel and the F0 contour can constitute an additional cue to overlong quantity. In words where the bearer of the quantity contrast is a consonant, the difference in foot duration is largest between long and overlong quantity.