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Resonant space ... gives consonants ... their characteristic timbre
The article now reads "The laminal alveolar articulation is often mistakenly called dental, because the tip of the tongue can be seen near to or touching the teeth. However, it is the rearmost point of contact that defines the place of articulation; this is where the oral cavity ends, and it is the resonant space of the oral cavity that gives consonants and vowels their characteristic timbre." I question the statement "... the resonant space of the oral cavity [is what] gives consonants and vowels their characteristic timbre." It is certainly true for vowels, however it is far from obvious that this is true (or entirely true) for consonants. Voiceless consonants, for example do not resonate at all. If what the article says is true, there would not be any distinction between the sound of an English [t] and a Russian [t]. However, this is definitely false. It could be that the term "dental consonant" is imprecise, but I challenge the assertion that it is only the resonant cavity that defines the timbre of consonants. I would like to know the qualifications of the person who is making this assertion. Thomas Hedden, Ph.D., Slavic Linguistics, Berkeley, (1988) Thomas.Hedden (talk) 16:26, 19 November 2008 (UTC)
The article now reads: Japanese speakers often mix alveolar lateral approximant sounds in other languages with alveolar approximant sounds due to a lack of alveolar lateral approximants in their own language.
"Mix" is unclear and misleading in this context. It sounds like such speakers might sometimes use one sound and sometimes use the other, incorrectly. I think it would be clearer to say: Japanese speakers often replace alveolar lateral approximant sounds in other languages with alveolar approximant sounds due to a lack of alveolar lateral approximants in their own language.
As far as I know(I do not actually know Japanese), officially Japanese has neither alveolar approximant nor alveolar lateral approximant. Instead they have alveolar flap, but they do sometimes pronounce that as alveolar lateral approximant. However the article reads "replace ... with alveolar approximant sounds" but in fact they replace them with alveolar tap. Also "duo to a lack of alveolar lateral approximant in their own language" though not "official" I do sometimes hear this consonant in Japanese speech, so this is not a good reason for replacing the consonants. Busukxuan (talk) 15:12, 15 February 2014 (UTC)