Retroflex ejective affricate

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Retroflex ejective affricate
Audio sample

The retroflex ejective affricate is a type of consonantal sound, used in some spoken languages. The symbol in the International Phonetic Alphabet that represents this sound is ʈ͡ʂʼ, though it is frequently simplified to tʂʼ.


Features of the retroflex ejective affricate:

  • Its manner of articulation is sibilant affricate, which means it is produced by first stopping the air flow entirely, then directing it with the tongue to the sharp edge of the teeth, causing high-frequency turbulence.
  • Its place of articulation is retroflex, which prototypically means it is articulated subapical (with the tip of the tongue curled up), but more generally, it means that it is postalveolar without being palatalized. That is, besides the prototypical subapical articulation, the tongue contact can be apical (pointed) or laminal (flat).
  • Its phonation is voiceless, which means it is produced without vibrations of the vocal cords.
  • 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 ejective (glottalic egressive), which means the air is forced out by pumping the glottis upward.


Language Word IPA Meaning Notes
Abkhaz [example needed]
Adyghe чӏыфэ [ʈ͡ʂʼəfa] 'debt'
Avar [example needed]
Gwichʼin etr'uu [ɛʈ͡ʂʼuː] arctic tern
Ubykh /ʈ͡ʂʼɜ/ good
Yokuts [example needed]

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