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Voiceless bilabial fricative

This article is about the consonantal sound. For the Greek letter, see Phi (letter). For the Cyrillic letter, see Ef (Cyrillic).
Voiceless bilabial fricative
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IPA number 126
Encoding
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Unicode (hex) Template:Infobox IPA/format numbers
X-SAMPA p\
Kirshenbaum P
Braille 25px25px
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The voiceless bilabial fricative is a type of consonantal sound, used in some spoken languages. The symbol in the International Phonetic Alphabet that represents this sound is ɸ. For English-speakers, it is easiest to think of the sound as an f-sound made only with the lips, instead of the upper teeth and lower lip, or a blowing sound.

Features

Features of the voiceless bilabial fricative:

  • Its manner of articulation is fricative, which means it is produced by constricting air flow through a narrow channel at the place of articulation, causing turbulence.
  • Its place of articulation is bilabial, which means it is articulated with both lips.
  • Its phonation is voiceless, which means it is produced without vibrations of the vocal cords. In some languages the vocal cords are actively separated, so it is always voiceless; in others the cords are lax, so that it may take on the voicing of adjacent sounds.
  • It is an oral consonant, which means air is allowed to escape through the mouth only.
  • Because the sound is not produced with airflow over the tongue, the centrallateral dichotomy does not apply.
  • The airstream mechanism is pulmonic, which means it is articulated by pushing air solely with the lungs and diaphragm, as in most sounds.

Occurrence

Language Word IPA Meaning Notes
Ainu フチ [ɸu̜tʃi] 'grandmother'
Angor fi [ɸi] 'body'
Bengali Eastern dialects fol [ɸɔl] 'fruit' Allophone of /f/ in Bangladesh and Tripura, /pʰ/ used in Western dialects.
Ewe[1] éƒá [é ɸá] 'he polished' Contrasts with /f/
Italian Tuscan[2] i capitani [iˌhäɸiˈθäːni] 'the captains' Intervocalic allophone of /p/; it may be an approximant [ɸ˕] instead. See Italian phonology
Itelmen чуфчуф [tʃuɸtʃuɸ] 'rain'
Japanese[3] 腐敗 fuhai [ɸɯhai] 'decay' Allophone of /h/ before /ɯ/. See Japanese phonology
Kaingang fy [ɸɨ] 'seed'
Kwama [kòːɸɛ́] 'basket'
Mao [ʔɑ̄ˈɸɑ́ŋ] 'empty'
Māori whakapapa [ɸakapapa] 'genealogy'
Odoodee pagai [ɸɑɡɑi] 'coconut'
Spanish Andalusian[4] los viejos [lɔh ɸjɛhɔ] 'the old ones' Allophone of /b/ after [h]. See Spanish phonology
Tahitian fī [ʔoːɸiː] 'snake' Allophone of /f/
Turkmen fabrik [ɸabrik] 'factory'

See also

References

Bibliography

  • Hall, Robert A. Jr. (1944). "Italian phonemes and orthography". Italica (American Association of Teachers of Italian) 21 (2): 72–82. JSTOR 475860. doi:10.2307/475860. 
  • Ladefoged, Peter (2005), Vowels and Consonants (Second ed.), Blackwell 
  • Okada, Hideo (1991), "Japanese", Journal of the International Phonetic Association 21 (2): 94–97, doi:10.1017/S002510030000445X 
  • Pérez, Ramón Morillo-Velarde; Aguilar, Rafael Cano; Jiménez, Antonio Narbona (1998), El Español hablado en Andalucía, ISBN 84-344-8225-8 
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