Culminative Function

Culminative Function

 

the function carried out by those characteristics (features) of sounds in speech that permit the listener to apprehend the number of words, or syntagmas, in a sentence. The unit containing the element of sound that performs the culminative function is called the culmination, for example, the culmination of a syntagma. The culminative function in German, for example, is performed by the primary stress. Stress, pitch, and other prosodic elements usually carry out the culminative function.

REFERENCE

Trubetskoi, N. S. Osnovy fonologii. Moscow, 1960. (Translated from German.)
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