Palatal lateral flap
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|Palatal lateral flap|
The palatal lateral flap is a rare type of consonantal sound, used in some spoken languages. There is no symbol in the International Phonetic Alphabet that represents this sound. However, the symbol for a palatal lateral approximant may be used with a breve as an ad hoc symbol, placed under the letter to avoid the ascender, ⟨ʎ̯ ⟩.
Features of the alveolar lateral flap:
- Its manner of articulation is flap, which means it is produced with a single contraction of the muscles so that one articulator (usually the tongue) is thrown against another.
- Its place of articulation is palatal, which means it is articulated with the middle or back part of the tongue raised to the hard palate.
- Its phonation is voiced, which means the vocal cords vibrate during the articulation. However, in some languages, such as Swiss German, it can just mean that this consonant is pronounced shorter and weaker than its voiceless counterpart, while its voicedness or lack thereof is not relevant. In such cases it's more accurate to call such sounds lenis or lax.
- It is an oral consonant, which means air is allowed to escape through the mouth only.
- It is a lateral consonant, which means it is produced by directing the airstream over the sides of the tongue, rather than down the middle.
- The airstream mechanism is pulmonic, which means it is articulated by pushing air solely with the lungs and diaphragm, as in most sounds.
The Iwaidja and Ilgar languages of Australia have a palatal lateral flap as well as alveolar and retroflex lateral flaps. However, the palatal flap has not been shown to be phonemic; it may instead be an underlying sequence /ɺj/. An example from Ilgar is the personal name [miʎ̯arɡu].
- This subscript placement is recommended by the typographers at SIL International.
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