Primary and Secondary Levels of Urdu Lexical Stress


  • Qurrat-ul-Ain Department of Applied Linguistics, Govt. College University, Faisalabad
  • Muhammad Asim Mehmood Department of Applied Linguistics, Govt. College University, Faisalabad
  • Sarmad Hussain Center for Language Engineering (CLE), UET, Lahore


primary stress, secondary stress, lexical stress, multi-syllabic words


The present study aims to investigate primary and secondary levels of Urdu lexical stress in multi-syllabic Urdu words. Previous researches (Hussain, 1997, 2005) on Urdu lexical stress reveal that Urdu has single stress per word. Hussain’s (2005) work records some evidence for secondary stress in multisyllabic words of Urdu. The present study utilizes vowel duration cue for lexical stress detection to furnish preliminary foundation of primary and secondary stress in Urdu multi-syllabic words. For this purpose, one extreme position, low-back vowel /a:/ has been selected. This vowel has been embedded in different bi-syllabic and tri-syllabic Urdu words. The recordings have been collected from 7 Urdu speakers and three contexts have been focused; primary stress, secondary stress and no stress. The speech has been recorded using PRAAT software on mono-channel in an anechoic room. The results show that tri-syllabic words of Urdu have multiple stresses.







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