The open-mid central unrounded vowel, or low-mid central 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 ⟨ɜ⟩. Note that the IPA symbol is not the digit ⟨3⟩, but a reversed epsilon. The value of this letter was only specified in 1993; before that, it was transcribed ⟨ɛ̈⟩.
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", and these are the only terms found in introductory textbooks on phonetics such as those by Peter Ladefoged.
||Sulcalized (the tongue is grooved like in [ɹ]). 'Upper Crust RP' speakers pronounce a more open vowel [ɐː], but for most other speakers it's actually mid ([ɜ̝ː]). This vowel corresponds to rhotacized [ɝ] in rhotic dialects.
||Somewhat fronted, corresponds to [ɛ~e̞] in other British dialects.
||The most common realization of the vowel transcribed as ⟨ʌ⟩ in American English.
|Most of Texas
||Some speakers. Corresponds to [ə] (or a further back vowel) in other Welsh dialects.
- Ladefoged, Peter (1993), A course in phonetics (3rd ed.), Fort Worth: Harcourt College Publishers
- Lodge, Ken (2009), A Critical Introduction to Phonetics
- Roach, Peter (2004), "British English: Received Pronunciation", Journal of the International Phonetic Association 34 (2): 239–245, doi:10.1017/S0025100304001768
- Thomas, Erik R. (2001), An acoustic analysis of vowel variation in New World English, Publication of the American Dialect Society 85, Duke University Press for the American Dialect Society, ISSN 0002-8207
- Wells, John C. (1982), Accents of English, 2: The British Isles, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.