Open-mid back unrounded vowel

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Open-mid back unrounded vowel
ʌ
IPA number 314
Encoding
Entity (decimal) ʌ
Unicode (hex) U+028C
X-SAMPA V
Kirshenbaum V
Sound

The open-mid back unrounded vowel, or low-mid back unrounded vowel, is a type of vowel sound, used in some spoken languages. The symbol in the International Phonetic Alphabet that represents this sound is ʌ, graphically a rotated lowercase vee (called a turned V, though it was created as a small-capital without the crossbar), and both the symbol and the sound are commonly referred to as either a wedge, a caret, or a hat. In transcriptions for some languages (including several dialects of English), this symbol is also used for the near-open central vowel.

The IPA prefers the terms "close" and "open" for vowels, and the name of the article follows this. However, a large number of linguists[who?], perhaps a majority, prefer the terms "high" and "low".

Features[edit]

IPA vowel chart
Front Near-​front Central Near-​back Back
Close
Blank vowel trapezoid.svg
iy
ɨʉ
ɯu
ɪʏ
eø
ɘɵ
ɤo
ɛœ
ɜɞ
ʌɔ
aɶ
ɑɒ
Near-close
Close-mid
Mid
Open-mid
Near-open
Open
Paired vowels are: unrounded • rounded
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IPA help • IPA key • chart • Loudspeaker.svg chart with audio • view

Occurrence[edit]

Language Word IPA Meaning Notes
English Inland Northern American[1] gut About this sound [ɡʌt]  'gut' Less fronted than other dialects, but for some Scottish speakers it may be almost as front as [ɜ].[2] See English phonology and Northern cities vowel shift
Newfoundland[3]
Older Received Pronunciation
Philadelphia[4]
Scottish[5]
Cardiff[6] thought [θʌ̈ːt] 'thought' Centralized; for some speakers it may be rounded and closer. See English phonology
General South African[7] lot [lʌ̈t] 'lot' Centralized. It's a common realization of /ɒ/ for younger speakers in Cape Town and Natal. It corresponds to a weakly rounded [ɒ̈] in all other South African dialects.
Irish Ulster dialect ola [ʌlˠə] 'oil' See Irish phonology
Korean[8] byeol [pjʌl] 'star' See Korean phonology
Vietnamese ân [ʌn] 'grace' Also transcribed as central [ə]. See Vietnamese phonology

Before World War II, the /ʌ/ of Received Pronunciation was phonetically close to a back vowel [ʌ]; this sound has since shifted forward towards [ɐ] (a near-open central vowel). Daniel Jones reports his speech (southern British), as having an advanced back vowel [ʌ̘] between his central /ə/ and back /ɔ/; however, he also reports that other southern speakers had a lower and even more advanced vowel approaching cardinal [a].[9] In American English varieties, e.g., the West and Midwest, and the urban South, the typical phonetic realization of the phoneme /ʌ/ is a central vowel that can be transcribed as [ɜ] (open-mid central).[10][11] Truly backed variants of /ʌ/ that are phonetically [ʌ] can occur in Inland Northern American English, Newfoundland English, Philadelphia English, some African-American Englishes, and (old-fashioned) white Southern English in coastal plain and Piedmont areas.[12][13] Despite this, the letter ʌ is still commonly used to indicate this phoneme, even in the more common varieties with central variants [ɐ] or [ɜ]. This may be due to both tradition as well as the fact that some other dialects retain the older pronunciation.[14]

References[edit]

  1. ^ W. Labov, S. Ash and C. Boberg (1997), A national map of the regional dialects of American English, Department of Linguistics, University of Pennsylvania, retrieved May 27, 2013 
  2. ^ Lodge (2009:167)
  3. ^ Thomas (2001:27–28, 61–63)
  4. ^ Thomas (2001:27–28, 73–74)
  5. ^ Scobbie, Gordeeva & Matthews (2006:7)
  6. ^ Coupland (1990:95)
  7. ^ Lass (2002:115)
  8. ^ Lee (1999)
  9. ^ Jones (1972:86–88)
  10. ^ Gordon (2004b:340)
  11. ^ Tillery & Bailey (2004:333)
  12. ^ Thomas (2001:27–28, 112–115, 121, 134, 174)
  13. ^ Gordon (2004a:294–296)
  14. ^ Roca & Johnson (1999:135)

Bibliography[edit]

  • Coupland, Nikolas (1990), English in Wales: Diversity, Conflict, and Change, ISBN 1-85359-032-0 
  • Gordon, Matthew (2004a), "New York, Philadelphia and other Northern Cities", in Kortmann, Bernd, A Handbook of Varieties of English: Volume 1: Phonology, Walter de Gruyter, pp. 294–296, ISBN 3-11-017532-0 
  • Gordon, Matthew (2004b), "The West and Midwest: phonology", in Kortmann, Bernd, A Handbook of Varieties of English: Volume 1: Phonology, Walter de Gruyter, p. 340, ISBN 3-11-017532-0 
  • Jones, Daniel (1972), An outline of English phonetics (9th ed.), Cambridge: W. Heffer & Sons Ltd. 
  • Lass, Roger (2002), "South African English", in Mesthrie, Rajend, Language in South Africa, Cambridge University Press, ISBN 9780521791052 
  • Lee, Hyun Bok (1999), "Korean", Handbook of the International Phonetic Association, Cambridge University Press, pp. 120–122, ISBN 0-521-63751-1 
  • Lodge, Ken (2009), A Critical Introduction to Phonetics, pp. 166–167, ISBN 978-0-8264-8873-2 
  • Roca, Iggy; Johnson, Wyn (1999), Course in Phonology, Blackwell Publishing 
  • Scobbie, James M; Gordeeva, Olga B.; Matthews, Benjamin (2006), Acquisition of Scottish English Phonology: an overview, Edinburgh: QMU Speech Science Research Centre Working Papers 
  • Thomas, Erik R. (2001), "An acoustic analysis of vowel variation in New World English", Publication of the American Dialect Society (Duke University Press for the American Dialect Society) 85, ISSN 0002-8207 
  • Tillery, Jan; Bailey, Guy (2004), "The urban South: phonology", in Kortmann, Bernd, A Handbook of Varieties of English: Volume 1: Phonology, Walter de Gruyter, p. 333, ISBN 3-11-017532-0