Open front rounded vowel

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Open front rounded vowel
ɶ
IPA number 312
Encoding
Entity (decimal) ɶ
Unicode (hex) U+0276
X-SAMPA &
Kirshenbaum a.
Braille ⠔ (braille pattern dots-35) ⠪ (braille pattern dots-246)
Listen

The (near) open front rounded vowel, or (near) low front rounded vowel,[1] is a type of vowel sound, not confirmed to be phonemic in any spoken languages. While traditionally characterized as a fully open (low) vowel, the rounded equivalent of [a], acoustically it is near-open (or near-low), the rounded equivalent of [æ].[2] The symbol in the International Phonetic Alphabet that represents this sound is ⟨ɶ⟩, and the equivalent X-SAMPA symbol is &. The letter ⟨ɶ⟩ is a small caps rendition of ⟨Œ⟩. Note that ⟨œ⟩, the lowercase version of the ligature, is used for the open-mid front rounded vowel.

A phoneme generally transcribed by this symbol is reported from the Bavarian subdialect of Amstetten. However, phonetically it is open-mid, i.e. [œ].[3]

It occurs allophonically in Weert Limburgish[4] as well as in some speakers of Danish[5] and Swedish.[6] In certain transcriptions of Danish ⟨ɶ⟩ is used to denote an open-mid front rounded vowel [œ].[5]

Riad (2014) reports that [ɶː] in Stockholm Swedish is sometimes difficult to distinguish from [ɒː] (which is the main realization of the /ɑː/ phoneme). He states that it is a sign that these vowels are phonetically very close.[6]

Features[edit]

IPA: Vowels
Front Central Back

Paired vowels are: unrounded  rounded

  • Its vowel height is open, also known as low, which means the tongue is positioned as far as possible from the roof of the mouth – that is, as low as possible in the mouth.
  • Its vowel backness is front, which means the tongue is positioned as far forward as possible in the mouth without creating a constriction that would be classified as a consonant. Note that rounded front vowels are often centralized, which means that often they are in fact near-front.
  • It is rounded, which means that the lips are rounded rather than spread or relaxed.

Occurrence[edit]

Language Word IPA Meaning Notes
Danish Some speakers[5] grøn [ˈɡ̊ʁɶ̝nˀ] 'green' Near-open;[7] allophone of /œ/ after /r/.[8] Other speakers pronounce it the same as [œ].[5] See Danish phonology
Limburgish Weert dialect[4] bùj [bɶj] 'shower' Allophone of /œ/ before /j/.[4]
Swedish Stockholm[6] öra [²ɶːra̠] 'ear' Pre-/r/ allophone of /øː/ (sometimes also /œ/) for younger speakers.[6] Open-mid [œː, œ] for other speakers.[6] See Swedish phonology

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ While the International Phonetic Association prefers the terms "close" and "open" for vowel height, many linguists use "high" and "low".
  2. ^ Geoff Lindsey (2013) The vowel space, Speech Talk
  3. ^ Traunmüller (1982), cited in Ladefoged & Maddieson (1996:290)
  4. ^ a b c Heijmans & Gussenhoven (1998:110)
  5. ^ a b c d Basbøll (2005:46)
  6. ^ a b c d e Riad (2014:38)
  7. ^ Grønnum (1998:100)
  8. ^ Grønnum (2005:288)

Bibliography[edit]