Late Middle Japanese - Phonology - Syllable Structure

Syllable Structure

Traditionally syllables were of (C)V structure. As such, there was no need to distinguish between syllables and morae. However, Chinese loanwords introduced a new type of sound that could end in -m, -n, or -t. This structure is (C)V(C) and is a syllable. The mora is based on the traditional (C)V structure.

During this period, syllable final -m and -n were initially distinguished; however, by the end of the Early period, both had merged into /N/.

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