Voiced pharyngeal fricative
|Voiced pharyngeal fricative|
|Voiced pharyngeal approximant|
The voiced pharyngeal approximant or fricative is a type of consonantal sound, used in some spoken languages. The symbol in the International Phonetic Alphabet that represents this sound is [ʕ], and the equivalent X-SAMPA symbol is ?\. Epiglottals and epiglotto-pharyngeals are often mistakenly taken to be pharyngeal.
Although traditionally placed in the fricative row of the IPA chart, [ʕ] is usually an approximant. The IPA symbol itself is ambiguous, but no language is known to make a phonemic distinction between fricatives and approximants at this place of articulation. The approximant is sometimes specified as [ʕ̞] or as [ɑ̯].
Features of the voiced pharyngeal approximant fricative:
- Its manner of articulation varies between approximant and fricative, which means it is produced by narrowing the vocal tract at the place of articulation, but generally not enough to produce much turbulence in the airstream. Languages do not distinguish voiced fricatives from approximants produced in the throat.
- Its place of articulation is pharyngeal, which means it is articulated with the tongue root against the back of the throat (the pharynx).
- Its phonation is voiced, which means the vocal cords vibrate during the articulation. However, in some languages (like 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.
- Because the sound is not produced with airflow over the tongue, the central–lateral dichotomy does not apply.
- The airstream mechanism is pulmonic, which means it is articulated by pushing air solely with the lungs and diaphragm, as in most sounds.
Pharyngeal consonants are not widespread. Sometimes, a pharyngeal approximant develops from a uvular approximant, as with the rhotic of Danish when it precedes [ɑ]. Many languages that have been described as having pharyngeal fricatives or approximants turn out on closer inspection to have epiglottal consonants instead. For example, the candidate /ʕ/ sound in Arabic and standard Hebrew (not modern Hebrew – Israelis of eastern European background generally pronounce this as a glottal stop) has been variously described as a voiced epiglottal fricative, an epiglottal approximant, or a pharyngealized glottal stop.
|Arabic||Egyptian||عمود||[ʕæˈmuːd]||'column'||See Egyptian Arabic phonology|
|Berber||Kabyle||ɛemmi||[ʕəmːi]||'my (paternal) uncle'||Written as <â> in most other Berber languages.|
|Chechen||Ӏан / jan||[ʕan] (help·info)||'winter'|
|Danish||ravn||[ʕ̞ɑʊ̯ˀn]||'raven'||An approximant. Allophone of /ʁ/ before /ɑ/.|
|Dutch||Limburg||rad||[ʕ̞ɑt]||'wheel'||An approximant. Realization of /r/ varies considerably among dialects. See Dutch phonology|
|Hebrew||Iraqi||עברית||[ʕibˈriːθ]||'Hebrew language'||See Modern Hebrew phonology|
|Kurdish||‘ewr||[ʕɑwr]||'cloud'||Both Sorani and Kurmanji dialects have this sound.|
|Marshallese||enana||[ɛ̯ɛnæ͡ɑʕnæ͡ɑʕ]||'it is bad'||See Marshallese phonology|
|Occitan||southern Auvergnat||pala||[ˈpaʕa]||'shovel'||See Occitan phonology|
|Portuguese||Fluminense||armando||[ɐʕˈmɜ̃du]||'arming', 'setting', 'framing'||In free variation with [ɣ], [ʁ] and [ɦ], before voiced consonants. Does not occur in onset position. See Portuguese phonology|
|Somali||caadi||[ʕaːdi] (help·info)||'normal'||See Somali phonology|
|Syriac||Turoyo||ܐܰܪܥܳܐ||[arʕo]||'earth (planet)'||ʕ is often not pronounced in Eastern Syriac varieties.|
|Ukrainian||гора||[ʕoˈrɑ]||'mountain'||May be transcribed /ɦ/. See Ukrainian phonology|
- Bonafont, Door Rosa (2006), Guia de conversa universitaria amazic-catala/Tamazight-Takatalant amalal usiwel asdawan, University of Barcelona
- Collins, Beverley; Mees, Inger M. (2003), The Phonetics of English and Dutch, Fifth Revised Edition, ISBN 9004103406
- Danyenko, Andrii; Vakulenko, Serhii (1995), Ukrainian, Lincom Europa, ISBN 9783929075083
- Ladefoged, Peter; Maddieson, Ian (1996), The Sounds of the World's Languages, Oxford: Blackwell, ISBN 0-631-19815-6
- Thelwall, Robin (1990), "Arabic", Journal of the International Phonetic Association 20 (2): 37–41, doi:10.1017/S0025100300004266