Date: Sun, 26 Mar 1995 21:38:37 -0500 From: "William H. Smith" Subject: Re: see or say Responses to my query concerning the shift in tense front vowels have noted that it was consistent with Labov's principle of vowel shifts. Actually, I had started to include a reference to Labove in my posting, but decided not to in deference to my own ignorance, since I have not yet read his work and am familiar with it only through references to it at conferences. As I understand it, in vowel shifts, peripheral (tense) vowels tend to rise and interior (lax) vowels tend to lower. If ash is interior, then the southern shift /e/ > [Ey] > [aey] is consistent with that principle. However, /i/ > [Iy] > [ey] represents a move back to the periphery. Either I misunderstand Labov, or my ears are off (either/both of which are likely) or this change is an exception to Labov's principle. I had hoped to get an answer to which of these is correct without embarassing myself too much, but no such luck. Bill smith Piedmont College wh5mith[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]