Voiced dental fricative
|Voiced dental fricative|
|Voiced dental approximant|
The voiced dental fricative is a type of consonantal sound, used in some spoken languages. It is familiar to English speakers as the th sound in father. The symbol in the International Phonetic Alphabet that represents this sound is eth, or [ð]. This was taken from the Old English letter eth, which could stand for either a voiced or unvoiced interdental non-sibilant fricative. This symbol is also sometimes used to represent the dental approximant, a similar sound not known to contrast with a dental non-sibilant fricative in any language, though that is more clearly written with the lowering diacritic, ⟨ð̞⟩. The dental non-sibilant fricatives are often called "interdental" because they are often produced with the tongue between the upper and lower teeth, and not just against the back of the upper teeth, as they are with other dental consonants.
This sound, and its unvoiced counterpart, are rare phonemes. The great majority of European and Asian languages, such as German, French, Persian, Japanese, and Chinese, lack this sound. Native speakers of those languages in which the sound is not present often have difficulty enunciating or distinguishing it, and replace it with a voiced alveolar sibilant [z], a voiced dental stop or voiced alveolar stop [d], or a voiced labiodental fricative [v]; known respectively as th-alveolarization, th-stopping, and th-fronting. As for Europe, there seems to be a great arc where this sound (and or the unvoiced variant) is present. Most of mainland Europe lacks the sound; however, some "periphery" languages as Gascon, Welsh, English, Elfdalian, Northern Sami, Mari, Greek, Albanian, Sardinian, some dialects of Basque and most speakers of Spanish have this sound in their consonant inventories, as phonemes or allophones.
Features of the voiced dental non-sibilant fricative:
- Its manner of articulation is fricative, which means it is produced by constricting air flow through a narrow channel at the place of articulation, causing turbulence. It does not have the grooved tongue and directed airflow, or the high frequencies, of a sibilant.
- Its place of articulation is dental, which means it is articulated with the tongue at either the upper or lower teeth, or both. (Most stops and liquids described as dental are actually denti-alveolar.)
- 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 central consonant, which means it is produced by directing the airstream along the center of the tongue, rather than to the sides.
- The airstream mechanism is pulmonic, which means it is articulated by pushing air solely with the lungs and diaphragm, as in most sounds.
In the following transcriptions, the undertack diacritic may be used to indicate an approximant [ð̞].
|Arabic||Standard||ذهب||[ˈðahab]||'gold'||See Arabic phonology|
|Assyrian Neo-Aramaic||wada||[waːð̞a]||'to do' or 'to make'||Common in the Tyari, Barwari and Chaldean Neo-Aramaic dialects.
Corresponds to [d] in other varieties.
|Basque||adar||[að̞ar]||'horn'||Allophone of /d/|
|Berber||Kabyle||ḏuḇ||[ðuβ]||'to be exhausted'|
|Catalan||fada||[ˈfað̞ə]||'fairy'||Allophone of /d/. See Catalan phonology|
|English||this||[ðɪs]||'this'||See English phonology|
|German||Austrian||leider||[ˈlaɛ̯ða]||'unfortunately'||Intervocalic allophone of /d/ in casual speech. See German phonology|
|Greek||δάφνη dáfni||[ˈðafni]||'laurel'||See Modern Greek phonology|
|Hebrew||Iraqi||אדוני||[ʔaðoˈnaj] (help·info)||'my lord'||Commonly pronounced [d]. See Modern Hebrew phonology|
|Norwegian||Trøndersk||i||[ð̩˕ʲː]||'in'||Present in the dialect of Meldal; it's a syllabic palatalized frictionless approximant. It corresponds to /iː/ in Standard Eastern Norwegian. See Norwegian phonology|
|Occitan||Gascon||que divi||[ke ˈð̞iwi]||'what I should'||Allophone of /d/. See Occitan phonology|
|Portuguese||European||nada||[ˈn̪äðɐ]||'nothing'||Northern and central dialects. Allophone of /d/, mainly after an oral vowel. See Portuguese phonology|
|compadre||[kũˈpaðɾi]||'compadre', 'buddy'||Allophone of postvocalic /d/ in consonant clusters with /ɾ/, in relaxed speech|
|Sardinian||nidu||[ˈnið̞u]||'nest'||Allophone of /d/|
|Spanish||Most dialects||dedo||[ˈd̪e̞ð̞o̞]||'finger'||Allophone of /d/. See Spanish phonology|
|Peninsular||jazmín||[xäðˈmĩn]||'Jasmine'||Allophone of /θ/ before voiced consonants, often in free variation with /θ/|
|Swedish||Central Standard||bada||[ˈbɑːð̞ä]||'to take a bath'||Allophone of /d/ in casual speech. See Swedish phonology|
|Some dialects||i||[ð̩˕ʲː]||'in'||A syllabic palatalized frictionless approximant. It corresponds to /iː/ in Central Standard Swedish. See Swedish phonology|
|Syriac||Western Neo-Aramaic||ܐܚܕ||[aħːeð]||'to take'|
|Tamil||ஒன்பது||[onbʌðɯ]||'nine'||See Tamil phonology|
|Welsh||bardd||[barð]||'bard'||See Welsh phonology|
|Zapotec||Tilquiapan||[example needed]||Allophone of /d/|
- Voiced alveolar non-sibilant fricative
- Sibilant consonant#Possible combinations
- Index of phonetics articles
- Olson et al. (2010:210)
- Thelwall & Sa'Adeddin (1990:37)
- Hualde (1991:99–100)
- Carbonell & Llisterri (1992:55)
- Sylvia Moosmüller (2007). "Vowels in Standard Austrian German: An Acoustic-Phonetic and Phonological Analysis". p. 6. Retrieved March 9, 2013.
- Olson et al. (2010:206–207)
- Vanvik (1979:14)
- Cruz-Ferreira (1995:92)
- Mateus & d'Andrade (2000:11)
- Martínez-Celdrán, Fernández-Planas & Carrera-Sabaté (2003:255)
- Cotton & Sharp (1988:19)
- Engstrand (2004:167)
- Merrill (2008:109)
- Grønnum (2003:121)
- Basbøll (2005:59 and 63)
- Basbøll, Hans (2005), The Phonology of Danish, ISBN 0-19-824268-9
- Carbonell, Joan F.; Llisterri, Joaquim (1992), Catalan, Journal of the International Phonetic Association 22 (1–2): 53–56, doi:10.1017/S0025100300004618
- Cruz-Ferreira, Madalena (1995), European Portuguese, Journal of the International Phonetic Association 25 (2): 90–94, doi:10.1017/S0025100300005223
- Engstrand, Olle (2004), Fonetikens grunder (in Swedish), Lund: Studenlitteratur, ISBN 91-44-04238-8
- Grønnum, Nina (2003), Why are the Danes so hard to understand?
- Hualde, José Ignacio (1991), Basque phonology, New York: Routledge, ISBN 978-0-415-05655-7
- 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
- Cotton, Eleanor Greet; Sharp, John (1988), Spanish in the Americas, Georgetown University Press, ISBN 978-0-87840-094-2
- Mateus, Maria Helena; d'Andrade, Ernesto (2000), The Phonology of Portuguese, Oxford University Press, ISBN 0-19-823581-X
- Merrill, Elizabeth (2008), Tilquiapan Zapotec, Journal of the International Phonetic Association 38 (1): 107–114, doi:10.1017/S0025100308003344
- Olson, Kenneth; Mielke, Jeff; Sanicas-Daguman, Josephine; Pebley, Carol Jean; Paterson, Hugh J., III (2010), The phonetic status of the (inter)dental approximant, Journal of the International Phonetic Association 40 (2): 199–215, doi:10.1017/S0025100309990296
- Thelwall, Robin; Sa'Adeddin, M. Akram (1990), Arabic, Journal of the International Phonetic Association 20 (2): 37–41, doi:10.1017/S0025100300004266
- Vanvik, Arne (1979), Norsk fonetik, Oslo: Universitetet i Oslo, ISBN 82-990584-0-6