imir (to play) should become *imirím (I play). However, the addition of the -ím causes syncope and the second-last syllable vowel i is lost so imirim becomes imrím.
In some nouns
inis (island) should become *inise in the genitive case. However, instead of *Baile na hInise, road signs say, Baile na hInse (the town of the island). Once again, there is the loss of the second i.
If the present root form in Irish is the result of diachronic syncope, there is a resistance to synchronic syncope for inflection.
As a poetic device
Sounds may be removed from the interior of a word as a rhetorical or poetic device: for embellishment or for the sake of the meter.
Latin commōverat > poetic commōrat ("he had moved")
English hastening > poetic hast'ning
English heaven > poetic heav'n
English over > poetic o'er
English ever > poetic e'er, often confused with ere ("before")
Various sorts of colloquial reductions might be called "syncope" or "compression".
Forms such as "didn't" that are written with an apostrophe are, however, generally called contractions:
English Australian > colloquial Strine, pronounced /straɪn/
English did not > didn't, pronounced /ˈdɪdənt/
English I would have > I'd've, pronounced /ˈaɪdəv/
English going to > colloquial gonna (generally only when unstressed and when expressing intention rather than direction), pronounced /ɡənə/ or, before a vowel, /ɡənu/
In historical phonology, the term "syncope" is often limited to the loss of an unstressed vowel, in effect collapsing the syllable that contained it: trisyllabic Latin calidus (stress on first syllable) develops as bisyllabic caldo in several Romance languages.
Loss of any sound
Old English hlāfweard > hlāford > Middle English loverd > Modern English lord, pronounced /lɔːrd/
Proto-Germanic *himinōz > Old Norse himnar "heavens"
A syncope rule has been identified in Tonkawa, an extinct American Indian language in which the second vowel of a word was deleted unless it was adjacent to a consonant cluster or a final consonant.
Crowley, Terry (1997). An Introduction to Historical Linguistics (3rd ed.). New York: Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-558378-7.
by the Rev.
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