Denti-alveolar consonant

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Tongue shape

In linguistics, a denti-alveolar consonant (or dento-alveolar) is a consonant that is articulated with a flat tongue against the alveolar ridge and upper teeth, such as /t/ and /d/ in languages such as Spanish and French. That is, a denti-alveolar consonant is one that is alveolar and laminal.

Although denti-alveolar consonants are often labeled as "dental", because only the forward contact with the teeth is visible, it is the rear-most point of contact of the tongue that is most relevant, for this is what defines the maximum acoustic space of resonance and will give a consonant its characteristic sound.[1]

In the case of French, the rear-most contact is alveolar or sometimes slightly pre-alveolar. Spanish /t/ and /d/ are laminal denti-alveolar,[2] whereas /l/ and /n/ are alveolar (though they assimilate to a following /t/ or /d/). Similarly, Italian /t/, /d/, /t͡s/, /d͡z/ are denti-alveolar, while /l/ and /n/ are alveolar.[3]

The dental clicks are also laminal denti-alveolar.

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Ladefoged, Peter; Maddieson, Ian (1996). The Sounds of the World's Languages. Oxford: Blackwell. ISBN 0-631-19814-8. 
  2. ^ Martínez-Celdrán et al. (2003:257)
  3. ^ Rogers & d'Arcangeli (2004:117)

References[edit]

  • Martínez-Celdrán, Eugenio; Fernández-Planas, Ana Ma.; Carrera-Sabaté, Josefina (2003), "Castilian Spanish", Journal of the International Phonetic Association 33 (2): 255–259, doi:10.1017/S0025100303001373 
  • Rogers, Derek; d'Arcangeli, Luciana (2004), "Italian", Journal of the International Phonetic Association 34 (1): 117–121, doi:10.1017/S0025100304001628