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Classification of scales




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scales can be classified as follows:

1) According to the arrangement of unstressed syllables within stress-tone groups can be:

· ˈStepping(serious, calm, reserved, unemotional);

e.g. Our ˈclasses beˈgin at ˈthree o’ ֻclock.

· ↘Sliding(excited, surprised);

e.g. Our ↘classes be↘gin at ↘three o’ ֻclock.

· ↗scandent( ironically, sarcastic);

e.g. Our ↗classes be↗gin at ↗three o’ ֻclock.

 

2) According to the direction of he pitch movements the scales can be classified as:

· Descending;

e.g. He ˈpromised to ˌ be in ֻ time.

· Ascending;

 

e.g. He ˌ promised to ˈbe in ‘time.

· Level;

e.g. He ˌˌ promised to ˌˌ be in ֻ time.

 

Scales in detail

1) Stepping scale

If the stressed syllables move down by steps and the unstressed syllables are pronounced on the same level as the preceding step, the head is called stepping. It is typical of emotionally neutral speech and is widely used in TV and radio broadcasting, teaching purposes, business communication, etc.

e.g. He inˈtends to ˈgo there ֻ next.

He ˈhasn't reˈgretted his deˈcision to ˈfollow this ca ֻreer.

1). Regular Descending Stepping Scaleis characterized by gradually descending sequence of stressed and unstressed syllables starting from the first stressed syllable situated at the highest pitch level. Unstressed syllables are situated on the pitch level of the preceding stressed syllable.

e.g. ˈHow do you pro ˈnounce this ֻ word? ‖

The Upbroken Descending Stepping Scale is characterized by a sudden break of a descending sequence of syllables by means of saying stressed syllable at a higher pitch level than the preceding one. After that the descend of pitch level gradually continues.

This sudden break of the scale is called Special. Rise which is marked in such a way () and occurs in the following cases:

a) to avoid the monotony of a long syntagm;

b) to combine two short syntagms into a longer one.

e.g. He ˈleaves to morrow ֻ morning. ‖



c) to distinguish semantically important words:

e.g. ˅Alice ξ is a nice little ֻ girl. ‖

Such words as "every", "very", "much", "many" and all the numerals are always pronounced with Special Rise.

Note:There exists also the so-called DownBroken Scale or Scale with a Drop. A sudden fall of the pitch level occurs on the second stressed syllable, which is pronounced with a very low tone. After a drop the high of the tone is gradually ascending before High Fall.

e.g. He ˈmay ↓go to the ֻtechnical ˌcollege. ‖

2). Ascending Stepping Scale

Ascending head is opposite of descending ones: the first stressed syllable is low in pitch, each following stressed syllable being higher than the preceding one; thus, stressed syllables form an ascending sequence. If the voice moves up by steps and the unstressed syllables continue the rise the head is called rising. It is used in emotionally coloured speech to convey personal concern or involvement, disgruntled protest, unpleasant surprise, impatience.

e.g. ˌ What in the ˈ world makes you ‘think so?



Stressed and unstressed syllables are situated in the ascending sequence, each of the stressed syllables at the higher level than the preceding one, while the unstressed syllables occupy the position of the preceding stressed syllable. This type of scale conveys an astonishment, interest, protest.

e.g. I could ˌhardly beˈlieve my ‘eyes. ‖

I ˌonly ˈknow I ‘loved you ˌonce. ‖


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