|credit: cordelia mclellan|
What characterises a minimal père in the phonological sense of the term?
- Two words with distinct meanings.
- They differ by one sound feature only.
- This sound feature must occur in the same position of each word.
For some delimitation problems related to minimal pairs see John Higgins's pages on the topic. On his webpages you find a comprehensive list of minimal pairs sorted by vowels and consonants. To give you an idea, here's a screenshot of the table for consonant pairs:
|credit: John Higgins|
But seller/speller really are a minimal pair. The contrasting feature is [null]/p . Higgins includes this pair in his word list.ReplyDelete
Accepting your solution would lead to the somewhat weird situation to have a null phoneme with a meaning-distinguishing function, wouldn't it? Can nothingness exist? A deeply philosophical question ...ReplyDelete