Het verschil tussen de lange en korte hoge vocalen in het Fries en de invloed hiervan op de realisering van de Nederlandse hoge vocalen door Friestaligen
This paper investigates differences in duration in the realization of the Dutch high vowels /i,y,u/ by Frisian and Dutch speakers. Whereas the Frisian vowel system exhibits a phonemic length contrast in high vowels, /i,y,u/ versus /i:,y:,u:/, Dutch high vowels are phonetically short. We show that the duration differences between Frisian high vowels influences the realization of the Dutch /i,y,u/ by Frisian speakers: the mean duration of Dutch high vowels is smaller if realized by Dutch speakers than by Frisian speakers.
We investigated two age groups of Frisian speakers: Younger Frisian speakers tend to realize their Frisian as well as their Dutch high vowels shorter than older Frisian speakers. This does not mean that the length contrast is disappearing in Frisian, because the younger speakers also diminish the duration of their short high vowels. In other words, the relative difference in duration between Frisian long and short high vowels more or less remains the same, probably due to the functional length difference in the Frisian vowel system, which is absent in the Dutch system. Therefore, we claim that the abstract phonological system influences the realization of vowels.