Voiceless palatal fricative

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Voiceless palatal fricative[edit]

Voiceless palatal fricative
ç
IPA number 138
Encoding
Entity (decimal) ç
Unicode (hex) U+00E7
X-SAMPA C
Kirshenbaum C
Braille ⠖ (braille pattern dots-235) ⠉ (braille pattern dots-14)
Sound

The voiceless palatal fricative is a type of consonantal sound used in some spoken languages. The symbol in the International Phonetic Alphabet that represents this sound is ç. The symbol ç is the letter c with a cedilla, as used to spell French and Portuguese words such as façade and ação. However, the sound represented by the letter ç in French, Portuguese and English orthography is not a voiceless palatal fricative but /s/, the voiceless alveolar fricative.

Palatal fricatives are relatively rare phonemes, and only 5% of the world's languages have /ç/ as a phoneme.[1] The sound occurs, however, as an allophone of /x/ in German, or, in other languages, of /h/ in the vicinity of front vowels, such as the non-silent 'h' of huge as in most dialects of English.

Features[edit]

Features of the voiceless palatal 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.
  • 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 voiceless, which means it is produced without vibrations of the vocal cords. In some languages the vocal cords are actively separated, so it is always voiceless; in others the cords are lax, so that it may take on the voicing of adjacent sounds.
  • 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.

Occurrence[edit]

Language Word IPA Meaning Notes
Azerbaijani[2] Some dialects çörək [tʃœˈɾæç] 'bread' Allophone of /c/
Berber Kabyle il [çil] 'to measure'
English[3][4] hue About this sound [çuː]  'hue' Allophone of /hj/. See English phonology
Finnish vihko [ˈʋiçko̞] 'notebook' Allophone of /h/. See Finnish phonology
German nicht About this sound [nɪçt]  'not' Allophone of /x/. See German phonology
Haida xíl [çɪ́l] 'leaf'
Hungarian[5] kapj [ˈkɒpç] 'get' (imperative) Allophone of /j/ between a voiceless obstruent and a word boundary. See Hungarian phonology
Icelandic hérna [çjɛrtna] 'here' See Icelandic phonology
Irish a Sheáin [ə çaːnʲ] 'John' (voc.) See Irish phonology
Japanese[6] hito [çi̥to̞] 'person' Allophone of /h/ before /i/ and /j/. See Japanese phonology
Korean him [çim] 'strength' Allophone of /h/ word-initially before /i/ and /j/. See Korean phonology
Norwegian kjekk [çek] 'handsome' See Norwegian phonology
Pashto Ghilzai and Wardak dialects[7] پښه [pça] 'foot'
Scottish Gaelic[8] eich [eç] 'horses'
Spanish Chilean[9] mujer [muˈçe̞r] 'woman' Allophone of /x/ before front vowels. See Spanish phonology
Walloon texhe [tɛç] 'to knit'
Xârâcùù[10] sègè[citation needed] [çɛɡɛ] 'stone'

Voiceless pre-velar fricative[edit]

Voiceless pre-velar fricative
ç̄

The voiceless pre-velar fricative or voiceless post-palatal fricative is a fricative consonant occurring in Belgian Dutch, where it is written as ch, or less often g.

Features[edit]

Features of the voiceless pre-velar 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.
  • Its place of articulation is pre-velar, which means it is articulated with the back of the tongue raised between the hard and the soft palate.
  • Its phonation is voiceless, which means it is produced without vibrations of the vocal cords. In some languages the vocal cords are actively separated, so it is always voiceless; in others the cords are lax, so that it may take on the voicing of adjacent sounds.
  • 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.

Occurrence[edit]

Language Word IPA Meaning Notes
Dutch Southern echt [ɛx̟t̪] 'real' Not all dialects. See Hard and soft G in Dutch and Dutch phonology
English Scouse[11] cloak [kl̥ɛʉ̯x̟] 'cloak' Allophone of /k/; may be fronted or backer instead, depending on the preceeding vowel. See English phonology
Greek[12] ψυχή About this sound [ps̠iˈç̄i]  'soul' See Modern Greek phonology
Limburgish Weert dialect[13] ich [ë̞ç̄] 'I' Allophone of /x/ before and after front vowels.[13]
Uzbek[14] [example needed] Lightly fricated.[14] Occurs word-initially and pre-consonantally, otherwise it's post-velar.[14]


See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

References[edit]

  • Arvaniti, Amalia (2007), Greek Phonetics: The State of the Art, Journal of Greek Linguistics 8: 97–208, doi:10.1075/jgl.8.08arv 
  • Damirchizadeh, A (1972), Modern Azerbaijani Language: Phonetics, Orthoepy and Orthography, Maarif Publ 
  • Heijmans, Linda; Gussenhoven, Carlos (1998), The Dutch dialect of Weert, Journal of the International Phonetic Association 28: 107–112, doi:10.1017/S0025100300006307 
  • Henderson, Michael M. T. (1983), Four Varieties of Pashto, Journal of the American Oriental Society (American Oriental Society) 103 (3): 595–597, JSTOR 602038 
  • Ladefoged, Peter; Maddieson, Ian (1996), The sounds of the World's Languages, Oxford: Blackwell, ISBN 0-631-19815-6 
  • Oftedal, M. (1956), The Gaelic of Leurbost, Oslo: Norsk Tidskrift for Sprogvidenskap 
  • Okada, Hideo (1991), Japanese, Journal of the International Phonetic Association 21 (2): 94–97, doi:10.1017/S002510030000445X 
  • Roach, Peter (2009), English Phonetics and Phonology: A Practical Course 1 (4th ed.), Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, ISBN 978-0-521-71740-3 
  • Siptár, Péter; Törkenczy, Miklós (2007), The Phonology of Hungarian, The Phonology of the World's Languages, Oxford University Press 
  • Sjoberg, Andrée F. (1963), Uzbek Structural Grammar 
  • Tryon, Darrell T. (1995), Comparative Austronesian Dictionary, Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter, ISBN 3-11-012729-6 
  • Watson, Kevin (2007), Liverpool English, Journal of the International Phonetic Association 37 (3): 351–360, doi:10.1017/s0025100307003180