A lateral is consonant in which the airstream proceeds along the sides of the tongue, but it is blocked by the tongue from going through the middle of the mouth. An example of a lateral consonant is the English l, as in Larry.
Phonetics is a branch of linguistics that studies the sounds of human speech, or—in the case of sign languages—the equivalent aspects of sign. It is concerned with the physical properties of speech sounds or signs (phones): their physiological production, acoustic properties, auditory perception, and neurophysiological status. Phonology, on the other hand, is concerned with the abstract, grammatical characterization of systems of sounds or signs.
In articulatory phonetics, the place of articulation of a consonant is the point of contact where an obstruction occurs in the vocal tract between an articulatory gesture, an active articulator, and a passive location. Along with the manner of articulation and the phonation, it gives the consonant its distinctive sound.
Sibilance is an acoustic characteristic of fricative and affricate consonants of higher amplitude and pitch, made by directing a stream of air with the tongue towards the sharp edge of the teeth, which are held close together; a consonant characterized by sibilance is called a sibilant. Examples of sibilants are the consonants at the beginning of the English words sip, zip, ship, chip, jump, and genre. The symbols in the International Phonetic Alphabet used to denote the sibilant sounds in these words are, respectively,. More specifically, the sounds, as in chip and jump, are affricates, whereas the rest are fricatives. Sibilants have a characteristically intense sound, which accounts for their paralinguistic use in getting one's attention.
Labialization is a secondary articulatory feature of sounds in some languages. Labialized sounds involve the lips while the remainder of the oral cavity produces another sound. The term is normally restricted to consonants. When vowels involve the lips, they are called rounded.
Postalveolar consonants are consonants articulated with the tongue near or touching the back of the alveolar ridge, farther back in the mouth than the alveolar consonants, which are at the ridge itself but not as far back as the hard palate, the place of articulation for palatal consonants. Examples of postalveolar consonants are the English palato-alveolar consonants, as in the words "ship", "'chill", "vision", and "jump", respectively.
In phonetics, palato-alveolar consonants are postalveolar consonants, nearly always sibilants, that are weakly palatalized with a domed (bunched-up) tongue. They are common sounds cross-linguistically and occur in English words such as ship and chip.
A retroflex consonant is a coronal consonant where the tongue has a flat, concave, or even curled shape, and is articulated between the alveolar ridge and the hard palate. They are sometimes referred to as cerebral consonants, especially in Indology. Other terms occasionally encountered are apico-domal and cacuminal.
The alveolar ejective is a type of consonantal sound, usually described as voiceless, being pronounced with a glottalic egressive airstream. In the International Phonetic Alphabet, ejectives are indicated with a "modifier letter apostrophe" ⟨ʼ⟩, as in this article. A reversed apostrophe is sometimes used to represent light aspiration, as in Armenian linguistics ⟨p‘ t‘ k‘⟩; this usage is obsolete in the IPA. In other transcription traditions, the apostrophe represents palatalization: ⟨pʼ⟩ = IPA ⟨pʲ⟩. In some Americanist traditions, an apostrophe indicates weak ejection and an exclamation mark strong ejection: ⟨k̓, k!⟩. In the IPA, the distinction might be written ⟨kʼ, kʼʼ⟩, but it seems that no language distinguishes degrees of ejection.
The alveolar lateral approximant is a type of consonantal sound used in many spoken languages. The symbol in the International Phonetic Alphabet that represents dental, alveolar, and postalveolar lateral approximants is ⟨l⟩, and the equivalent X-SAMPA symbol is l.
Not to be confused with the Voiceless alveolar lateral affricate, the Tibetan lh as in Lhasa
The voiceless dental non-sibilant fricative is a type of consonantal sound used in some spoken languages. It is familiar to English speakers as the 'th' in thing. Though rather rare as a phoneme in the world's inventory of languages, it is encountered in some of the most widespread and influential. The symbol in the International Phonetic Alphabet that represents this sound is ⟨θ⟩, and the equivalent X-SAMPA symbol is . The IPA symbol is the Greek letter theta, which is used for this sound in post-classical Greek, and the sound is thus often referred to as "theta".
Interdental consonants are produced by placing the tip of the tongue between the upper and lower front teeth. This differs from dental consonants, which are articulated with the tongue against the back of the upper incisors.
The voiced retroflex sibilant affricate is a type of consonantal sound, used in some spoken languages. The symbol in the International Phonetic Alphabet that represents this sound is ⟨ɖ͡ʐ ⟩, sometimes simplified to ⟨dʐ ⟩. It occurs in such languages as Polish and Northwest Caucasian languages (apical).
A voiceless alveolar affricate is a type of affricate consonant pronounced with the tip or blade of the tongue against the alveolar ridge just behind the teeth. This refers to a class of sounds, not a single sound. There are several types with significant perceptual differences:
A voiceless alveolar fricative is a type of fricative consonant pronounced with the tip or blade of the tongue against the alveolar ridge just behind the teeth. This refers to a class of sounds, not a single sound. There are at least six types with significant perceptual differences:
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