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    levels, shown by dots in a descending scale: [ ˥ ] high tone, [ ˦ ], [ ˧ ], [ ˨ ]
1st, 2nd and 3rd mid tones, [ ˩ ] low tone.

    1. High Tone. An essential high tone is not always on the highest
possible level in connected speech. When it occurs after a low tone, it
is usually lower than a previous high tone in the same sentence. This
may be shown graphically thus [ ˥ ˩ ˦ ] . After another low tone, a further
lowering takes place [ ˥ ˩ ˦ ˩ ˧ ], and so on. These lowered variants of the
“high” tone are not indicated in this book as they are brought about
by assimilation to the preceding low tone, and therefore have no
semantic or grammatical function of their own which would make it
essential to distinguish them from other high tones. They will accordingly
be represented thus [ ˥ ˩ ˥ ˩ ˥ ˩ ].

    2. Low Tone. A low tone is frequently raised before a high tone and
between high tones. This may be shown graphically thus [ ˨ ˥ ], and
combined with the phenomenon of the “lowered” high tone explained
in the previous paragraph, thus [ ˧ ˥ ˨ ˦ ˩ ˧ ]. Such variants are also the
result of assimilation and will therefore not be shown here.

    The simplification of tone marking brought about in this way leaves
the signs for the mid tones free to mark only those tonal phenomena
that have definite grammatical or syntactic functions.

    In a final position, and in very slow speech also in the middle of a
sentence, the low tone is generally not level but falling. The fall starts
below the level of the preceding tone, i.e. after a high tone, it starts at
a mid-level; after a mid tone, at a lower mid tone. There are, how-
ever, certain cases in which the low tone is level, and occasionly the
only distinction between two grammatical forms is made by the occur-
rence of either the falling or the level variant of a low tone. The rules
for the appearance of these variants could, however, clearly be ascertained
with one informant only (S. Obayuwana), and at a time when a general
notation of the phenomenon in this book was no longer possible (but
v. the notes under the headings sikã [ ˩ ˥ ], xa 1 [ / ] and 1 [˥]). It
seems to be most frequent in the case of second or third members of
verbal combinations occurring after a high tone: then, the falling low
tone is used in the ipf. and the level variant in the pf. The author
intends to deal with this question more fully in a grammar of this
language which he hopes to publish at some later period.

    3. Mid Tones. Three levels of mid tones occur: [ ˦ ˧ ˨ ]; the 1st
following on a high tone, the 2nd following on the 1st mid, and the
3rd on the 2nd mid tone. High tones following any of these mid tones
are assimilated to them. The interval between high and mid and
between two mid tones is not sufficiently wide to produce the impression
of a high-low interval: it may vary between one and three tones. In
a very few cases it has been necessary to mark mid tone after a low