Contraction
(919 words)

Abstract

Contraction is the coalescence of two adjacent vowels into a long vowel or a diphthong.

Contraction is the coalescence of two adjacent vowels into a long vowel or a diphthong. It is one of the possible strategies for eliminating hiatus (Diphthongization; Synizesis). In Ancient Greek contractions ensued from loss of intervocalic /s/, /j/ and /w/. The term ‘contraction’ refers to coalescence of vowels word-internally. For the same phenomenon in word junctures, see Crasis.

Similar vowels coalesce into the corresponding l…

Cite this page
Alcorac Alonso Déniz, “Contraction”, in: Encyclopedia of Ancient Greek Language and Linguistics, Managing Editors Online Edition: First Last. Consulted online on 20 November 2017 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2214-448X_eagll_SIM_00000437>
First published online: 2013



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