Near-open vowel

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A near-open vowel is a type of vowel sound used in some spoken languages. The defining characteristic of a near-open vowel is that the tongue is positioned similarly to an open vowel, but slightly more constricted. Near-open vowels are sometimes described as lax variants of the fully open vowels[citation needed]. The near-open vowels for which separate symbols exist in the International Phonetic Alphabet are: