Close-mid back unrounded vowel
|Close-mid back unrounded vowel|
The close-mid back unrounded vowel, or high-mid back unrounded vowel, is a type of vowel sound, used in some spoken languages. Its symbol in the International Phonetic Alphabet is 〈ɤ〉, called "ram's horns". It is distinct from the symbol for the voiced velar fricative, 〈ɣ〉, which has a descender.
The IPA prefers terms "close" and "open" for vowels, and the name of the article follows this. However, a large number of linguists, perhaps a majority, prefer the terms "high" and "low".
Before the 1989 IPA Convention, the symbol for the close-mid back unrounded vowel was 〈〉, sometimes called "baby gamma", which has a flat top. The symbol was revised to be 〈〉, "ram's horns", with a rounded top, in order to differentiate it from the Latin gamma 〈ɣ〉. Unicode provides only U+0264 ɤ latin small letter rams horn (HTML:
ɤ), but in some fonts this character may appear as a "baby gamma" instead.
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|Paired vowels are: unrounded • rounded|
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- Its vowel height is close-mid, also known as high-mid, which means the tongue is positioned halfway between a close vowel (a high vowel) and a mid vowel.
- Its vowel backness is back, which means the tongue is positioned as far back as possible in the mouth without creating a constriction that would be classified as a consonant. Note that unrounded back vowels tend to be centralized, which means that they're in fact near-back.
- It is unrounded, which means that the lips are not rounded.
|Chinese||Mandarin||喝 hē||[xɤ˥] (help·info)||'to drink'||See Mandarin phonology|
|Taiwanese Hokkien||蚵 ô||[ɤ˧]||'oyster'||Mostly southern Taiwanese speech.|
|Irish||Uladh||[ɤlˠu]||'Ulster'||See Irish phonology|
|Korean||Gyeongsang dialect||거기 geogi||[ˈkɤ̘ɡɪ]||'there'||See Korean phonology|
|Scottish Gaelic||doirbh||[d̪̊ɤrʲɤv]||'difficult'||See Scottish Gaelic phonology|