Open central unrounded vowel

Open central unrounded vowel

Open central unrounded vowel
ɑ̈
ɐ̞
IPA number 304 415
Encoding
Entity (decimal) a​̈
Unicode (hex) U+0061 U+0308
X-SAMPA a_" or a_- or A_" or 6_o
Sound
 ·

The open central unrounded vowel, or low central unrounded vowel, is a type of vowel sound, used in many spoken languages. While the International Phonetic Alphabet officially has no dedicated letter for this sound between front [a] and back [ɑ], it is normally written a. If precision is required, it can be specified by using diacritics, such as centralized ä or retracted , but this is not common.

Acoustically, however, [a] is an extra-low central vowel.[1] It is more common to use plain [a] for an open central vowel and, if needed, [æ] (officially near-open front vowel) for an open front vowel. Alternatively, Sinologists may use the letter (small capital A). The IPA voted against officially adopting this symbol in 2011–2012.[2]

The Hamont dialect of Limburgish has been reported to contrast long open front, central and back unrounded vowels,[3] which is extremely unusual.

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".

Contents

  • Features 1
  • Occurrence 2
  • Notes 3
  • References 4
  • Further reading 5

Features

IPA vowel chart
Front Near-​front Central Near-​back Back
Close
iy
ɨʉ
ɯu
ɪʏ
ʊ
eø
ɘɵ
ɤo
ø̞
əɵ̞
ɤ̞
ɛœ
ɜɞ
ʌɔ
æ
ɐ
aɶ
äɒ̈
ɑɒ
Near-close
Close-mid
Mid
Open-mid
Near-open
Open
Paired vowels are: unrounded • rounded
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  • 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 central, which means the tongue is positioned halfway between a front vowel and a back vowel. This often subsumes open (low) front vowels, because the tongue does not have as much flexibility in positioning as it does for the close (high) vowels; the difference between an open front vowel and an open back vowel is equal to the difference between a close front and a close central vowel, or a close central and a close back vowel.
  • It is unrounded, which means that the lips are not rounded.

Occurrence

Most languages have some form of an unrounded open vowel. Because the IPA uses a for both front and central unrounded open vowels, it is not always clear whether a particular language uses the former or the latter.

Language Word IPA Meaning Notes
Assyrian Neo-Aramaic kalu [kʰälu] 'bride' May be realized as [a] and [æ] in the Urmia, Nochiya and Jilu dialects. In the Tyari dialect, [ɑ] is usually used.
Bavarian Amstetten dialect[4]
Bengali পা/pa [pä] 'leg' See Bengali phonology
Catalan[5] sac [s̠äk] 'sack' See Catalan phonology
Chinese Cantonese /saa1 [sä̝ː˥] 'sand' Somewhat raised. See Cantonese phonology
Mandarin /tā [tʰä˥] 'he' See Mandarin phonology
Czech[6] Amerika [ˈämɛrɪkä] 'America' See Czech phonology
Danish Standard[7][8][9][10][11] barn [ˈb̥äːˀn] 'child' Most often transcribed in IPA as ɑ - the way it is realized in the conservative variety.[12] See Danish phonology
Dutch Amsterdam[13] bad [bät] 'bath' Also present in many other non-Randstad accents.[13] It corresponds to [ɑ] in Standard Dutch. See Dutch phonology
Antwerp[13]
Brabant[13][14]
Standard[15][16] zaal [zäːɫ] 'hall' Ranges from front to central;[17] in non-standard accents it may be back. See Dutch phonology
English Australian[18] car [kʰäː] 'car' See Australian English phonology
Cultivated South African[19] Some speakers. For other speakers, it is less front [ɑ̟ː][19][20] or, in Estuary English, even more back [ɑː].[20]
Estuary[20]
Norfolk[21]
General
South African[22]
time [tʰäːm] 'time' Corresponds to the diphthong /aɪ/ in most dialects. General South African speakers may also monophthongize /aʊ/. See English phonology
Southern American[23]
General American[24] cot [kʰäʔt̚] 'cot' It may be more back [ɑ̟ ~ ɑ], especially for speakers with the cotcaught merger. See English phonology
Southern Michigan[25] See English phonology
Northern England[26] trap [t̠ɹ̝̊äp] 'trap' Notably prevalent in Yorkshire, mainly around the Pennines and the Yorkshire Dales. More front [æ ~ a] for some other speakers. See English phonology
Some speakers from Reading[20] More front [ɛ ~ æ ~ a] for other speakers. See English phonology
Vancouver[27] [t̠ɹ̝̊äp̚] See Canadian Shift and English phonology
Younger speakers from Ontario[28]
Finnish[29] kana [ˈkänä] 'hen' Typically transcribed in IPA as ɑ; also described as near-open back [ɑ̝].[30] See Finnish phonology
French[31] patte [pät̪] 'paw' See French phonology
German Standard[32] Katze [ˈkʰät͡sə] 'cat' See German phonology
Hebrew[33] פח     'garbage can' Hebrew vowels are not shown in the script, see Niqqud and Modern Hebrew phonology
Hindustani माता / ماتا [mata] 'mother' See Hindustani phonology
Hungarian[34] láb [läːb] 'leg' See Hungarian phonology
Icelandic[35][36][37][38] fara [ˈfäːrä] 'go' See Icelandic phonology
Igbo[39] ákụ [ákú̙] 'kernal'
Italian[40] casa [ˈkäːzä] 'home' See Italian phonology
Japanese[41] ka     'mosquito' See Japanese phonology
Limburgish Hamont dialect[3] zaak [zäːk²] 'business' Contrasts with front [] and back [ɑː].[3] See Hamont dialect phonology
Lithuanian namas [ˈnäːmäs] 'house'
Malay api [äpi] 'fire'
Norwegian Standard Eastern[42] hat [häːt̪] 'hate' May be transcribed in IPA as ɑː, the way it is pronounced in some dialects. Some older speakers may use a front [] instead. See Norwegian phonology
Polish[43] kat     'executioner' See Polish phonology
Portuguese[44] vá [vä] 'go' See Portuguese phonology
Punjabi ਜਾ [d͡ʒäː] 'go!'
Romanian cal [käl] 'horse' See Romanian phonology
Russian там     'there' See Russian phonology
Scottish Gaelic slat [slät] 'yard' See Scottish Gaelic phonology
[45] патка / patka [pâ̠t̪ka̠] 'female duck' See Serbo-Croatian phonology
Shiwiar[46]
Spanish[47] rata [ˈrät̪ä] 'rat' See Spanish phonology
Swedish Central Standard[48] bank [bäŋk] 'bank' Also described as front [a].[49] See Swedish phonology
[50] at [ät̪] 'horse' See Turkish phonology
Vietnamese Hanoi xa [s̪äː] 'far' See Vietnamese phonology
West Frisian laad [ɫäːt] 'drawer'
Yoruba[51]

Notes

  1. ^ Geoff Lindsey (2013) The vowel space, Speech Talk
  2. ^ Keating (2012), p. 245.
  3. ^ a b c Verhoeven (2007), p. 221.
  4. ^ Traunmüller (1982), cited in Ladefoged & Maddieson (1996:290)
  5. ^ Carbonell & Llisterri (1992), p. 54.
  6. ^ Dankovičová (1999), p. 72.
  7. ^ Grønnum (1998:100)
  8. ^ Grønnum (2005:268)
  9. ^ Grønnum (2003)
  10. ^ Basbøll (2005:46)
  11. ^ Allan, Holmes & Lundskær-Nielsen (2000:17)
  12. ^ Ladefoged & Johnson (2010:227)
  13. ^ a b c d Collins & Mees (2003), p. 131.
  14. ^ Peters (2010), p. 241.
  15. ^ Gussenhoven (1992), p. 47.
  16. ^ Verhoeven (2005), p. 245.
  17. ^ Collins & Mees (2003), p. 104.
  18. ^ Cox & Palethorpe (2007), p. 344.
  19. ^ a b Lass (2002), pp. 116–117.
  20. ^ a b c d Altendorf & Watt (2004), p. 188.
  21. ^ Lodge (2009), p. 168.
  22. ^ Lass (2002), p. 117.
  23. ^ Labov, Ash & Boberg (2006), p. ?.
  24. ^ Wells (1982), p. 476.
  25. ^ Hillenbrand (2003), p. 122.
  26. ^ Boberg (2004), p. 361.
  27. ^ Esling & Warkentyne (1993), p. ?.
  28. ^ Boberg (2004), pp. 361–362.
  29. ^ Maddieson (1984), cited in Suomi, Toivanen & Ylitalo (2008:21)
  30. ^ Suomi, Toivanen & Ylitalo (2008), p. 21.
  31. ^ Fougeron & Smith (1993), p. 73.
  32. ^ Mangold (2005), p. 37.
  33. ^ Laufer (1999), p. 98.
  34. ^ Szende (1994), p. 92.
  35. ^ Árnason (2011:60)
  36. ^ Einarsson (1945:10), cited in Gussmann (2011:73)
  37. ^ Haugen (1958:65)
  38. ^ "Icelandic Phonetic Transcription.PDF - ptg_ice.pdf" (PDF). Retrieved 23 March 2015. 
  39. ^ Ikekeonwu (1999), p. 109.
  40. ^ Rogers & d'Arcangeli (2004), p. 119.
  41. ^ Okada (1991), p. 94.
  42. ^ Vanvik (1979), p. 13.
  43. ^ Jassem (2003), p. 105.
  44. ^ Cruz-Ferreira (1995), p. 91.
  45. ^ Landau et al. (1999), p. 67.
  46. ^ Fast Mowitz (1975:2)
  47. ^ Martínez-Celdrán, Fernández-Planas & Carrera-Sabaté (2003), p. 256.
  48. ^ Engstrand (1999), p. 140.
  49. ^ Thorén & Petterson (1992), p. 15.
  50. ^ Zimmer & Orgun (1999), p. 155.
  51. ^ Bamgboṣe (1969:166)

References

  • Allan, Robin; Holmes, Philip; Lundskær-Nielsen, Tom (2000), Danish: An Essential Grammar, London: Routledge,  
  • Altendorf, Ulrike; Watt, Dominik (2004), "The dialects in the South of England: phonology", in Schneider, Edgar W.; Burridge, Kate; Kortmann, Bernd; Mesthrie, Rajend; Upton, Clive, A handbook of varieties of English, 1: Phonology, Mouton de Gruyter, pp. 181–196,  
  • Árnason, Kristján (2011), The Phonology of Icelandic and Faroese, Oxford University Press,  
  • Bamgboṣe, Ayọ (1966), A Grammar of Yoruba, [West African Languages Survey / Institute of African Studies], Cambridge: Cambridge University Press 
  •  
  •  
  • Carbonell, Joan F.; Llisterri, Joaquim (1992), "Catalan", Journal of the International Phonetic Association 22 (1–2): 53–56,  
  • Collins, Beverley; Mees, Inger M. (2003), The Phonetics of English and Dutch, Fifth Revised Edition (PDF),  
  • Cox, Felicity; Palethorpe, Sallyanne (2007), "Australian English", Journal of the International Phonetic Association 37 (3): 341–350,  
  • Cruz-Ferreira, Madalena (1995), "European Portuguese", Journal of the International Phonetic Association 25 (2): 90–94,  
  • Dankovičová, Jana (1999), "Czech", Handbook of the International Phonetic Association, Cambridge University Press, pp. 70–74 
  • Einarsson, Stefán (1945), Icelandic. Grammar texts glossary., Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins Press,  
  • Engstrand, Olle (1999), "Swedish", Handbook of the International Phonetic Association: A Guide to the usage of the International Phonetic Alphabet., Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, pp. 140–142,  
  • Esling, John H.; Warkentyne, Henry J. (1993), "Retracting of /æ/ in Vancouver English", in Clarke, Sandra, Focus on Canada, Varieties of English Around the World,  
  • Fast Mowitz, Gerhard (1975), Sistema fonológico del idioma achual, Lima: Instituto Lingüístico de Verano 
  • Fougeron, Cecile; Smith, Caroline L (1993), "French", Journal of the International Phonetic Association 23 (2): 73–76,  
  • Grønnum, Nina (1998), "Illustrations of the IPA: Danish", Journal of the International Phonetic Association 28 (1 & 2): 99–105,  
  • Grønnum, Nina (2003), Why are the Danes so hard to understand? 
  • Grønnum, Nina (2005), Fonetik og fonologi, Almen og Dansk (3rd ed.), Copenhagen: Akademisk Forlag,  
  • Gussenhoven, Carlos (1992), "Dutch", Journal of the International Phonetic Association 22 (2): 45–47,  
  • Gussmann, Edmund (2011). "Getting your head around: the vowel system of Modern Icelandic" (PDF). Folia Scandinavica Posnaniensia 12: 71–90.  
  •  
  • Hillenbrand, James M. (2003), "American English: Southern Michigan", Journal of the International Phonetic Association 33 (1): 121–126,  
  • Ikekeonwu, Clara (1999), "Igbo", Handbook of the International Phonetic Association, pp. 108–110,  
  • Jassem, Wiktor (2003), "Polish", Journal of the International Phonetic Association 33 (1): 103–107,  
  • Keating, Patricia A. (2012), "IPA Council votes against new IPA symbol", Journal of the International Phonetic Association 42 (2): 245,  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  • Landau, Ernestina; Lončarića, Mijo; Horga, Damir; Škarić, Ivo (1999), "Croatian", Handbook of the International Phonetic Association: A guide to the use of the International Phonetic Alphabet, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, pp. 66–69,  
  • Lass, Roger (2002), "South African English", in Mesthrie, Rajend, Language in South Africa, Cambridge University Press,  
  • Laufer, Asher (1999), "Hebrew", Handbook of the International Phonetic Association, pp. 96–99 
  • Lodge, Ken (2009), A Critical Introduction to Phonetics, pp. 167–169,  
  • Maddieson, Ian (1984), Patterns of Sounds, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press,  
  • Mangold, Max (2005), Das Aussprachewörterbuch, Duden, p. 37,  
  • Martínez-Celdrán, Eugenio; Fernández-Planas, Ana Ma.; Carrera-Sabaté, Josefina (2003), "Castilian Spanish", Journal of the International Phonetic Association 33 (2): 255–259,  
  • Okada, Hideo (1991), "Japanese",  
  • Peters, Jörg (2010), "The Flemish–Brabant dialect of Orsmaal–Gussenhoven", Journal of the International Phonetic Association 40 (2): 239–246,  
  • Rogers, Derek; d'Arcangeli, Luciana (2004), "Italian", Journal of the International Phonetic Association 34 (1): 117–121,  
  • Suomi, Kari; Toivanen, Juhani; Ylitalo, Riikka (2008), Finnish sound structure,  
  • Szende, Tamás (1994), "Hungarian", Journal of the International Phonetic Alphabet 24 (2): 91–94,  
  • Thorén, Bosse; Petterson, Nils-Owe (1992), Svenska Utifrån Uttalsanvisningar,  
  • Traunmüller, Hartmut (1982), "Vokalismus in der westniederösterreichischen Mundart.", Zeitschrift für Dialektologie und Linguistik 2: 289–333,  
  • Vanvik, Arne (1979), Norsk fonetik, Oslo: Universitetet i Oslo,  
  • Verhoeven, Jo (2005), "Belgian Standard Dutch", Journal of the International Phonetic Association 35 (2): 245,  
  • Verhoeven, Jo (2007), "The Belgian Limburg dialect of Hamont", Journal of the International Phonetic Association 37 (2): 219–225,  
  • Wells, John C. (1982), Accents of English 3, Cambridge University Press,  
  • Zimmer, Karl; Orgun, Orhan (1999), "Turkish", Handbook of the International Phonetic Association: A guide to the use of the International Phonetic Alphabet (PDF), Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, pp. 154–158,  

Further reading

  • Barry, William; Trouvain, Jürgen (2008), "Do we need a symbol for a central open vowel?", Journal of the International Phonetic Association 38 (3): 349–357,