Open-mid front unrounded vowel

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Open-mid front unrounded vowel
ɛ
IPA number 303
Encoding
Entity (decimal) ɛ
Unicode (hex) U+025B
X-SAMPA E
Kirshenbaum E
Sound

The open-mid front unrounded vowel, or low-mid 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 a Latinized variant of the Greek lowercase epsilon, ɛ.

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".

Features[edit]

IPA vowel chart
Front Near-​front Central Near-​back Back
Close
Blank vowel trapezoid.svg
iy
ɨʉ
ɯu
ɪʏ
eø
ɘɵ
ɤo
ɛœ
ɜɞ
ʌɔ
aɶ
ɑɒ
Near-close
Close-mid
Mid
Open-mid
Near-open
Open
Paired vowels are: unrounded • rounded
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IPA help • IPA key • chart • Loudspeaker.svg chart with audio • view

Occurrence[edit]

Language Word IPA Meaning Notes
Akan pɛ [pʰɛ] 'to like/love'
Albanian tre [tɾɛ] 'three'
Catalan[1] mel [mɛɫ] 'honey' See Catalan phonology
Armenian Eastern[2] էջ [ɛd͡ʒ] 'page'
Chinese Cantonese se4 [sɛː˩] 'snake' See Cantonese phonology
Mandarin xié [ɕjɛ˧˥] 'tilted' See Mandarin phonology
Wu ngae [ŋɛ˥˨] 'face'
Czech Amerika [ˈämɛrɪkä] 'America' See Czech phonology
Danish Standard[3] frisk [ˈfʁ̞ɛsɡ̊] 'fresh' Typically transcribed /æ/. See Danish phonology
Dutch Standard bed About this sound [bɛt]  'bed' See Dutch phonology
Leiden jij About this sound [jɛ̞ː]  'you' Corresponds to [ɛi] in standard Dutch.
Nijmegen
The Hague[4]
Southern Some dialects, corresponds to [ɛi] in standard Dutch.
English Canadian bed About this sound [bɛd]  'bed'
General American[5]
Irish
Northern English[6] May be somewhat lowered.[7]
Received Pronunciation[8][9] Older RP speakers pronounce a closer vowel []. See English phonology
Scottish[10]
Southern English
Broad Australian fat [fɛt] 'fat' Lower [æ] for other speakers.
Cockney[11]
Malaysian These accents have a met-mat merger.
Singaporean[12]
New Zealand[13]
South African[14] Some broad speakers. Others pronounce [æ ~ a].
Southern English Some dialects. Other speakers pronounce a more open vowel [æ ~ a].
Belfast[15] days [dɛːz] 'days' Pronounced [iə] in closed syllables; corresponds to [eɪ] in RP.
Zulu[16] mate [mɛt] 'mate' Speakers with a met-mate merger.
Faroese elska [ɛlska] 'love'
French[17] bête About this sound [bɛt̪]  'beast' See French phonology
Galician pé [pɛ] 'foot'
Georgian[18] გედი [ɡɛdɪ] 'swan'
German Standard[19] Bett About this sound [bɛtʰ]  'bed' More like [ɛ̝̈] on the vowel chart in Kohler (1999). See German phonology
Hindustani شَہَر / शहर [ʃɛɦɛr] 'city' See Hindustani phonology
Hungarian nem [nɛm] 'no' See Hungarian phonology
Icelandic ég [jɛɣ] 'I' See Icelandic phonology
Italian[20] bene About this sound [ˈbɛːne]  'good' See Italian phonology
Korean 태양 [tʰɛ.jaŋ] 'Sun' See Korean phonology
Lithuanian mane [mɐˈnʲɛ] 'me' (acc.)
Luxembourgish[21] drécken [ˈdʀɛkən] 'to push' Allophone of /e/ before velar consonants; in free variation with [e].
Macedonian елен [ˈɛl̪ɛn̪] 'deer' See Macedonian phonology
Ngwe Njoagwi dialect [lɛ̀rɛ́] 'eye'
North Frisian tech [tɛx] 'closed'
Polish[22] ten About this sound [t̪ɛn̪]  'this one' (masc. nom.) See Polish phonology
Portuguese[23] café [kɐˈfɛ] 'coffee' See Portuguese phonology
Russian[24] это About this sound [ˈɛt̪ə]  'this' See Russian phonology
Scottish Gaelic aig [ɛk] 'at' See Scottish Gaelic phonology
Seri me [mɛ] 'you'
Spanish Eastern Andalusian[25] las madres [læ̞ː ˈmæ̞ːð̞ɾɛː] 'the mothers' Corresponds to [] in other dialects, but in these dialects they're distinct. See Spanish phonology
Murcian[25]
Swedish Central Standard[26] ät [ɛ̠ːt̪] 'eat' (imp.) Somewhat retracted. See Swedish phonology
Turkish süre [syɾɛ] 'duration' See Turkish phonology
Ukrainian береза About this sound [bɛˈrɛz̪ɐ]  'birch' See Ukrainian phonology
Vietnamese e [ɛ] 'to fear' See Vietnamese phonology
West Frisian têd [tɛːt] 'languid'
Yoruba sẹ̀ [ɛ̄sɛ] 'leg'

The vowel transcribed /ɛ/ in Standard Eastern Norwegian is actually mid.[27]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

Bibliography[edit]

  • Bet Hashim, Suzanna; Brown, Adam (2000), "The [e] and [æ] vowels in Singapore English", in Brown, Adam; Deterding, David; Ling, Low Ee Ling, The English Language in Singapore: Research on Pronunciation, Singapore: Singapore Association for Applied Linguistics, pp. 84–92, ISBN 981-04-2598-8 
  • Carbonell, Joan F.; Llisterri, Joaquim (1992), "Catalan", Journal of the International Phonetic Association 22 (1–2): 53–56, doi:10.1017/S0025100300004618 
  • Collins, Beverley; Mees, Inger M. (2003), The Phonetics of English and Dutch, Fifth Revised Edition, ISBN 9004103406 
  • Cruz-Ferreira, Madalena (1995), "European Portuguese", Journal of the International Phonetic Association 25 (2): 90–94, doi:10.1017/S0025100300005223 
  • Dum-Tragut, Jasmine (2009), Armenian: Modern Eastern Armenian, Amsterdam: John Benjamins Publishing Company 
  • Engstrand, Olle (1999), "Swedish", Handbook of the International Phonetic Association: A Guide to the usage of the International Phonetic Alphabet., Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, p. 140, ISBN 0-521-63751-1 
  • Fougeron, Cecile; Smith, Caroline L. (1993), "French", Journal of the International Phonetic Association 23 (2): 73–76, doi:10.1017/S0025100300004874 
  • Gilles, Peter; Trouvain, Jürgen (2013), "Luxembourgish", Journal of the International Phonetic Association 43 (1): 67–74, doi:10.1017/S0025100312000278 
  • Grønnum, Nina (1998), "Danish", Journal of the International Phonetic Association 28 (1–­2): 99–105, doi:10.1017/S0025100300006290 
  • Hughes, Arthur; Trudgill, Peter (1979), English Accents and Dialects: An Introduction to Social and Regional Varieties of British English, Baltimore: University Park Press 
  • Jassem, Wiktor (2003), "Polish", Journal of the International Phonetic Association 33 (1): 103–107, doi:10.1017/S0025100303001191 
  • Jones, Daniel; Ward, Dennis (1969), The Phonetics of Russian, Cambridge University Press 
  • Kohler, Klaus J. (1999), "German", Handbook of the International Phonetic Association: A guide to the use of the International Phonetic Alphabet, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, pp. 86–89, ISBN 0-521-65236-7 
  • Lanham, Len W. (1967), The pronunciation of South African English, Cape Town: Balkema 
  • Lodge, Ken (2009), A Critical Introduction to Phonetics, ISBN 978-0-8264-8873-2 
  • Mangold, Max (2005), Das Aussprachewörterbuch, Duden, p. 37, ISBN 9783411040667 
  • Mannell, R.; Cox, F.; Harrington, J. (2009a), An Introduction to Phonetics and Phonology, Macquarie University 
  • Mannell, R.; Cox, F.; Harrington, J. (2009b), An Introduction to Phonetics and Phonology, Macquarie University 
  • Rogers, Derek; d'Arcangeli, Luciana (2004), "Italian", Journal of the International Phonetic Association 34 (1): 117–121, doi:10.1017/S0025100304001628 
  • Schmitt, Holger (2007), "The case for the epsilon symbol (ɛ) in RP DRESS", Journal of the International Phonetic Association 37 (3): 321–328, doi:10.1017/S0025100307003131 
  • Scobbie, James M; Gordeeva, Olga B.; Matthews, Benjamin (2006), Acquisition of Scottish English Phonology: an overview, Edinburgh: QMU Speech Science Research Centre Working Papers 
  • Shosted, Ryan K.; Chikovani, Vakhtang (2006), "Standard Georgian", Journal of the International Phonetic Association 36 (2): 255–264, doi:10.1017/S0025100306002659 
  • Vanvik, Arne (1979), Norsk fonetik, Oslo: Universitetet i Oslo, ISBN 82-990584-0-6 
  • Watson, Kevin (2007), "Liverpool English", Journal of the International Phonetic Association 37 (3): 351–360 
  • Watt, Dominic; Allen, William (2003), "Tyneside English", Journal of the International Phonetic Association 33 (2): 267–271, doi:10.1017/S0025100303001397 
  • Zamora Vicente, Alonso (1967), Dialectología española (2nd ed.), Biblioteca Romanica Hispanica, Editorial Gredos