pausal environments

Paul Zellmer zellmer at
Mon Aug 23 19:14:45 EDT 1999

So, Vince, when and where does all this get published?  It looks like
something that I'd like to look at in my spare time (as if I had any!)


----- Original Message -----
From: Vincent DeCaen <decaen at>
To: Biblical Hebrew <b-hebrew at>
Sent: Tuesday, August 24, 1999 1:17 AM
Subject: pausal environments

> henry,
> following up on work by revell in the 1980s on pause, by goerwitz 1993
> phd, and dresher Language 1994, we were able to assemble a hypothesis
> of a bottom-up, prosodic projection of pausal environments from
> syntactic edges. this has been tested and confirmed.
> the important point is that most words do not have more than one
> prosodic form, relatively rare in fact to have two let alone three.
> but to the extent pausal forms show up where predicted, we can also
> say where they ought to appear if they could: these are "pausal
> environments".
> it was further predicted that a mismatch between bottom-up pause and
> top-down cantillation would follow from the variation in length of
> verse. it was further predicted that the pausal environments would
> fall on certain accents as a function of average length of verse.
> it was predicted that the relation of our pausal environment to the
> accents should be identical to your statistical findings: as it turns
> out, couldn't ask for a better match!! i think this is the sort of
> confirmation that we needed, and apparently have.
> cheers
> V
> -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=
> Dr Vincent DeCaen     <decaen at>
> c/o Near and Middle Eastern Civilizations, 4 Bancroft Ave., 2d floor
> University of Toronto, Toronto ON, CANADA, M5S 1A1
> Hebrew Syntax Encoding Initiative,
> -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=
> The mind takes to a new idea the way the body takes to microbe:
> It rejects it.  --P.D. Medawar
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