Close-mid central unrounded vowel

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Close-mid central unrounded vowel
IPA number 397
Entity (decimal) ɘ
Unicode (hex) U+0258
Kirshenbaum @<umd>
Braille ⠲ (braille pattern dots-256) ⠑ (braille pattern dots-15)

The close-mid central unrounded vowel, or high-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 ⟨ɘ⟩. This is a mirrored letter e, and should not be confused with the schwaə⟩, which is a turned e. It was added to the IPA in 1993; before that, this vowel was transcribed ⟨ë⟩ (Latin small letter e with umlaut, not Cyrillic small letter yo). Certain older sources[1] transcribe this vowel ⟨ɤ̈⟩.

The ⟨ɘ⟩ letter may be used with a lowering diacriticɘ̞⟩, to denote the mid central unrounded vowel.

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".


IPA vowel chart
Front Near-​front Central Near-​back Back
Blank vowel trapezoid.svg
i • y
ɨ • ʉ
ɯ • u
ɪ • ʏ
ɪ̈ • ʊ̈
ɯ̽ • ʊ
e • ø
ɘ • ɵ
ɤ • o
 • ø̞
ə • ɵ̞
ɤ̞ • 
ɛ • œ
ɜ • ɞ
ʌ • ɔ
æ • 
ɐ • ɞ̞
a • ɶ
ä • ɒ̈
ɑ • ɒ
Paired vowels are: unrounded • rounded
This table contains phonetic symbols, which may not display correctly in some browsers. [Help]

IPA help • IPA key • chart • Loudspeaker.svg chart with audio • view


Language Word IPA Meaning Notes
English Australian[2][3] bird [bɘːd] 'bird' Typically transcribed in IPA with ⟨ɜː⟩. See Australian English phonology
Southern Michigan[4] [bɘ˞ːd] Rhotacized.
Cardiff[5] foot [fɘt] 'foot' Less often rounded [ɵ];[6] corresponds to [ʊ] in other dialects. See English phonology
New Zealand[7] bit [bɘt] 'bit' Corresponds to /ɪ/ in other dialects. See English phonology
Southern American[8] nut [nɘt] 'nut' Some dialects.[8] Corresponds to /ʌ/ in other dialects. See English phonology
German Standard[9] bitte About this sound [ˈbɪtɘ]  'please' Also described as mid [ə].[10][11] See Standard German phonology
Irish Munster[12] sáile [ˈsˠɰaːlʲɘ] 'salt water' Usually transcribed in IPA with [ɪ̽]. It is an allophone of /ə/ next to non-palatal slender consonants.[12] See Irish phonology
Jebero[13] [ˈiʃɘk] 'bat'
Kaingang[14] [ˈᵐbɘ] 'tail' Varies between central [ɘ] and back [ɤ].[15]
Kazakh тіл [tɘl] 'language'
Kensiu[16] [ɟɘ˞h] 'to trim' Rhotacized; may be transcribed in IPA with ⟨ɚ⟩.[16]
Korean [ɘː.ɾɯn] 'senior' See Korean phonology.
Lizu[17] [Fkɘ] 'eagle' Allophone of /ə/ after velar stops.[17]
Mapudungun[18] elün [ë̝ˈlɘn] 'to leave (something)'
Mongolian[19] үсэр [usɘɾɘ̆] 'jump'
Mono[20] dœ [dɘ] 'be (equative)' May be transcribed in IPA with ⟨ə⟩.[20]
Norman acataer [akatɘ] 'to buy' May be [u ~ o ~ e] depending on the region. In Jèrriais it's spelled aï and pronounced [aɪ].
Northern Qiang Mawo dialect [ɘ ʑu] 'a pile'
Northern Tiwa Taos dialect [ˌpʼɒ̀ˑxɘ̄ˈɬɑ̄ːnæ] 'star' Allophone of /ɤ/. See Taos phonology
Paicî  ?? [kɘ̄ɾɘ̄] 'spider'
Polish[21] tymczasowy About this sound [t̪ɘ̟mt͡ʂäˈs̪ɔvɘ̟]  'temporary' Somewhat fronted;[21] typically transcribed in IPA with ⟨ɨ⟩. See Polish phonology
Romanian Moldavian dialects[22] casă [ˈkäsɘ] 'house' Corresponds to [ə] in standard Romanian. See Romanian phonology
Russian Some speakers[23] солнце About this sound [ˈs̪o̞n̪t̪͡s̪ɘ]  'sun' Unstressed allophone of /ɨ/ after /t͡s/; other speakers realize it as near-close [ɨ̞].[23] See Russian phonology
Sama Sibutu[24] [miˈwɘːʔ] 'lost' Allophone of /ɨ/ in word-final stressed syllables before /ʔ/; can be transcribed in IPA with ⟨ə⟩.[24]
Shiwiar[25] [example needed]
Skolt Sami vuõˊlǧǧem [vʲuɘlɟ͡ʝːɛm] 'I left'
Vietnamese[26] v [vɘ˨˩ˀ] 'wife' Typically transcribed in IPA with ⟨ɤ⟩. See Vietnamese phonology
Xumi Upper[27] [LPmɘ̃dɐ] 'upstairs' Nasalized; occurs only in this word.[27] It is realized as mid [ə̃] in Lower Xumi.[28]
Zapotec Tilquiapan[29] ne [nɘ] 'and' Most common realization of /e/.[29]