a1 University of Pennsylvania
This article investigates the constraints on variable deletion of short vowels in word-final unstressed syllables found in the variety of Latvian spoken in Riga. The affected vowels are almost always inflectional endings. Results from a variable rule analysis of 8 native speakers from Riga indicate that internal phonological and prosodic factors (especially distance from the main word stress) act as the strongest constraints on vowel deletion, along with the educational level of the speaker. The functional constraint of the recoverability of the deleted vowel is not significant.