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Re: Nqwebasaurus, an African ornithomimosaur

W dniu 2012-06-16 09:34, Ilja Nieuwland pisze:

I surely hope so. But if it isn't, a few examples: Estonian (you know,
Estonia, full of multi-story buildings) has twenty-six diphtongs,
Hungarian (Hungary, country full of fully clothed people) uses a vocal
harmony system that will scare the crap out of you, and anyone looking
for linguistic simplicity in Chinese is up for a hard search indeed.

Conservative Standard French has 15 or so vowel phonemes.
Received Pronunciation has even more. Admittedly, Americans have fewer vowels and taller buildings than the English, but the Scots vowel system is even smaller, and that's in a country with few skyscrapers and people who are not always fully clad under their kilts.

At the other extreme, some of the smallest and simplest sound systems (10-11 phonemes, including vowels and consonants) are found in regions such as the Amazon Jungle and Papua New Guinea. There is no simple correlation between technological advance/degree of urbanisation and the size of the phoneme inventory.