Near-close near-front unrounded vowel

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Near-close near-front unrounded vowel
IPA number 319
Entity (decimal) ɪ
Unicode (hex) U+026A
Kirshenbaum I
Braille ⠌ (braille pattern dots-34)

The near-close near-front unrounded vowel, or near-high near-front 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 ɪ, i.e. a small capital letter i.

Handbook of the International Phonetic Association defines [ɪ] as a mid-centralized (lowered and centralized) close front unrounded vowel,[1] therefore, an alternative transcription of this vowel is (a symbol equivalent to a more complex ï̞). However, some languages, such as Australian English,[2] Danish[3][4] and Swedish[5] have the near-close front unrounded vowel, which differs from its near-front counterpart in that it is a lowered, but not centralized close front unrounded vowel, transcribed in the IPA as , ɪ̟ or (this article uses ɪ̟).

The IPA prefers the terms "close" and "open" for classifying vowels. Some linguists use the terms "high" and "low," respectively, instead of "close" and "open."[citation needed]


IPA vowel chart
Front Near-​front Central Near-​back Back
Blank vowel trapezoid.svg
Paired vowels are: unrounded • rounded
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Language Word IPA Meaning Notes
Assyrian Neo-Aramaic sitwa [sɪtwɐ] 'winter' Used mostly in the Tyari dialects. [ə] is used predominantly in other dialects.
Chinese Wu /ih [iɪʔ˥] 'one'
Yue /bing1 [pɪŋ˥] 'ice' See Cantonese phonology
Czech Bohemian[6] byli [ˈbɪlɪ] 'they were' Also described as close-mid front [e];[7] corresponds to close front [i] in Moravian Czech.[7] See Czech phonology
Danish Standard[3][4] hel [ˈhɪ̟ːˀl] 'whole' Fully front.[3][4] Most often, it is transcribed e(ː) - the way it is pronounced in the conservative variety.[8] See Danish phonology
Dutch Orsmaal-Gussenhoven dialect[9] blik [blɪ̟k] 'plate' Somewhat fronted.[9] See Orsmaal-Gussenhoven dialect phonology
Rotterdam[10] bit [bɪ̟t] 'bit' Somewhat fronted;[10] corresponds to [ɘ̟] in standard Dutch.[11][12] See Dutch phonology
The Hague[10]
English Most dialects bit About this sound [bɪt]  'bit' See English phonology
Australian[2] [bɪ̟t] Fully front.[2] See Australian English phonology
New Zealand bed [bɪd] 'bed' Some speakers. For others it's more open [e], or even [ɛ], in case of South African English.
South African
French Quebec petite [pət͡sɪt] 'small' Allophone of /i/ in closed syllables. See Quebec French phonology
German Southern Bernese [ˈɣ̊lɪːd̥] 'cloth' Corresponds to [ɛi̯] in the city of Bern. See Bernese German phonology
Standard[13][14] bitte About this sound [ˈbɪtʰə]  'please' May be somewhat lowered.[13] See German phonology
Hindustani [example needed] See Hindustani phonology
Irish duine [dˠɪnʲə] 'person' See Irish phonology
Kaingang[15] [ɸɪˈɾi] 'rattlesnake' Atonic allophone of /i/ and /e/.[16]
Limburgish Hamont dialect[17] noorderweend [ˈnoːʀdəʀβ̞ɪːnt] 'north wind' Standard Dutch-influenced pronunciation;[17] may be realized as []. See Hamont dialect phonology
Hasselt dialect[18] mìs [mɪs] 'wrong'
Weert dialect[19] zeen [zɪːn] 'to be' Allophone of /eə/ before nasals.[19]
Lithuanian viltis [vʲɪlʲˈtʲɪs] 'hope'
Luxembourgish[20] Been [bɪ̟ːn] 'leg' Fully front;[20] typically transcribed in IPA as . Also described as close-mid [].[21] See Luxembourgish phonology
Mongolian[22] ? [xɪɾɘ̆] 'hillside'
Norwegian litt [lɪt] 'a little' May be fully front. See Norwegian phonology
Plautdietsch winta [ˈvɪntə] 'winter'
Portuguese Brazilian[23] cine [ˈsinɪ] 'cine' Reduction and neutralization of unstressed /e/ (can be epenthetic), /ɛ/ and /i/. Can be unvoiced. See Portuguese phonology
Punjabi ਨਿੰਬੂ [nɪmbu] 'lemon'
Romanian Banat dialect[24] râu [rɪw] 'river' Corresponds to [ɨ] in standard Romanian. See Romanian phonology
Russian[25] дерево About this sound [ˈdʲerʲɪvə]  'tree' Occurs only in unstressed syllables. See Russian phonology
Scottish Gaelic thig [hɪk] 'come' See Scottish Gaelic phonology
Sema[26] pi [pì̞] 'to say' Fully front;[26] also described as close [i].[27]
Shiwiar[28] [example needed] Allophone of /i/.[28]
Sicilian arrìriri [aˈrɪɾiɾi] 'smile'
Slovak[29][30][31] rýchly [ˈrɪːxlɪ] 'fast' Backness varies between front and near-front.[29] See Slovak phonology
Spanish Eastern Andalusian[32] mis [mɪ̟ː] 'my' (pl.) Fully front. It corresponds to [i] in other dialects, but in these dialects they're distinct. See Spanish phonology
Swedish Central Standard[5] sill About this sound [s̪ɪ̟l̪ː]  'herring' Fully front.[5] See Swedish phonology
Turkish[33] müşteri [my̠ʃt̪e̞ˈɾɪ] 'customer' Allophone of /i/ described variously as "word-final"[33] and "occurring in final open syllable of a phrase".[34] See Turkish phonology
Ukrainian[35] ходити [xoˈdɪtɪ] 'to walk' See Ukrainian phonology
Upper Sorbian[36] być [bɪt͡ʃ] 'to be' Allophone of /i/ after hard consonants.[36] See Upper Sorbian phonology
Vietnamese ch [cɪj˧ˀ˨] 'elder sister' See Vietnamese phonology
West Frisian Hindeloopers beast [bɪːst] 'animal' See West Frisian phonology
Yoruba[37] [example needed] Fully front; typically transcribed in IPA as ĩ. It is nasalized, and may be close [ĩ] instead.[37]

Icelandic i is often transcribed as /ɪ/, but it is actually close-mid [e].[38][39][40]


  1. ^ International Phonetic Association (1999:13)
  2. ^ a b c Robert Mannell and Felicity Cox (2009-08-01). "Australian English Monophthongs". Retrieved 25 January 2016. 
  3. ^ a b c Grønnum (1998:100)
  4. ^ a b c Basbøll (2005:45)
  5. ^ a b c Engstrand (1999:140)
  6. ^ Dankovičová (1999:72)
  7. ^ a b Šimáčková, Podlipský & Chládková (2012:228–229)
  8. ^ Ladefoged & Johnson (2010:227)
  9. ^ a b Peters (2010:241)
  10. ^ a b c Collins & Mees (2003:131)
  11. ^ Gussenhoven (1992:47)
  12. ^ Verhoeven (2005:245)
  13. ^ a b Kohler (1999:87)
  14. ^ Mangold (2005:37)
  15. ^ Jolkesky (2009:676–677 and 682)
  16. ^ Jolkesky (2009:676 and 682)
  17. ^ a b Verhoeven (2007), p. 224.
  18. ^ Peters (2006), p. 119.
  19. ^ a b Heijmans & Gussenhoven (1998), p. 110.
  20. ^ a b Gilles & Trouvain (2013:70)
  21. ^ Trouvain & Gilles (2009:75)
  22. ^ Iivonen & Harnud (2005:62, 66–67)
  23. ^ Barbosa & Albano (2004:229)
  24. ^ Pop (1938), p. 30.
  25. ^ Jones & Ward (1969:37)
  26. ^ a b Teo (2012:368)
  27. ^ Teo (2014:27)
  28. ^ a b Fast Mowitz (1975:2)
  29. ^ a b Pavlík (2004:93, 95)
  30. ^ Hanulíková & Hamann (2010:375)
  31. ^ Mistrík (1988:13)
  32. ^ a b Zamora Vicente (1967:?)
  33. ^ a b Göksel & Kerslake (2005:10)
  34. ^ Zimmer & Organ (1999:155)
  35. ^ Сучасна українська мова: Підручник / О.Д. Пономарів, В.В.Різун, Л.Ю.Шевченко та ін.; За ред. О.Д.пономарева. — 2-ге вид., перероб. —К.: Либідь, 2001. — с. 14
  36. ^ a b Šewc-Schuster (1984), p. 34.
  37. ^ a b Bamgboṣe (1969:166)
  38. ^ Árnason (2011:60)
  39. ^ Einarsson (1945:10), cited in Gussmann (2011:73)
  40. ^ Haugen (1958:65)