Voiceless uvular fricative

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Voiceless uvular fricative
χ
IPA number 142
Encoding
Entity (decimal) χ
Unicode (hex) U+03C7
X-SAMPA X
Kirshenbaum X
Braille ⠨ (braille pattern dots-46) ⠯ (braille pattern dots-12346)
Sound

The voiceless uvular fricative is a type of consonantal sound, used in some spoken languages. The symbol in the International Phonetic Alphabet that represents this sound is χ, or in broad transcription x although the latter technically represents a velar pronunciation. The sound is represented by (ex with underdot) in Americanist phonetic notation.

Features

Features of the voiceless uvular 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 uvular, which means it is articulated with the back of the tongue (the dorsum) at the uvula.
  • 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.
  • It is a central consonant, which means it is produced by directing the airstream along the center of the tongue, rather than to the sides.
  • 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
Abkhaz хпа [χpa] 'three' Contrasts with labialized and palatalized forms. See Abkhaz phonology
Adyghe пхъэ About this sound [pχa]  'wood'
Archi хол [χol] 'arm'
Afrikaans goed [χut] 'good' Some dialects.
Aleut Atkan dialect hati [hɑtiχ] 'ten'
Arabic Standard خبز [χʊbz] 'bread' See Arabic phonology
Armenian Eastern1 խոտ About this sound [χot]  ‘grass’
Avar орх [orχ] 'to lift' Contrasts with a tense form
Bashkir хат [χɑt] 'letter'
Berber Kabyle axxam [aχχam] 'house'
Chilcotin ? [ʔælaχ] 'I made it'
Dutch Netherlandic Scheveningen About this sound [ˈsχeɪ̯vənɪŋə(n)]  'Scheveningen' Many central and western dialects. Corresponds to /ɣ/ and /x/ in standard Netherlandic Dutch. See Dutch phonology
The Hague standaard [ˈstɑndaːχt] 'standard' Traditional allophone of /ʀ/, occurring after vowels before consonants.
Eyak da. [daːχ] 'and'
French proche [pχɔʃ] 'nearby' Allophone of /ʁ/ before or after voiceless obstruent. See French phonology
German Lower Rhine2 Wirte [ˈvɪχtə] 'hosts' In free variation with ɐ between a vowel and a voiceless coronal consonant.
Standard3 Dach [daχ] 'roof' Appears only after certain back vowels. See German phonology
Swiss mich [mɪχ] 'me' (acc.) Some speakers, for others it's velar x. Swiss German makes no distinction between /x/ and /ç/.
Haida ḵ'aláaan [qʼʌlɑ́χʌn] 'fence'
Hebrew אוכל [ʔoχel] 'food' See Modern Hebrew phonology
Kabardian хъарзынэ [χaːrzəna] 'well'
Klallam saʔqʷaʔ [sχaʔqʷaʔ] 'salmon backbone'
Lakota ȟóta [ˈχota] 'gray'
Lezgian хат [χatʰ] 'bead' Contrasts with a labialized form
Ongota [χibiɾi] 'bat'
Oowekyala [tsʼkʼʷχttɬkt͡s] 'the invisible one here with me will be short'
Nez Perce [ˈχəχɑˑt͡s] 'grizzly bear'
Portuguese Fluminense anarquia [ɐ̃nɐ̞χˈki.ɐ] 'anarchy' In free variation with x, ʁ ~ ʀ, ħ and h before voiceless consonants.
General Brazilian4 marrom [mɐ̞ˈχõː] 'the color brown' Some dialects, corresponds to rhotic consonant /ʁ/. See Portuguese phonology
Saanich wexes [wəχəs] 'small frogs' Contrasts with a labialized form
Scots nicht [nɪχt]citation needed 'night'
Seri xeecoj [χɛːkox] 'wolf' Contrasts with a labialized form
Spanish Castilian5 jugar [χuˈɣ̞äɾ] 'to play' Allophone of /x/ before back vowels and w. See Spanish phonology
Some speakers hijo [ˈiχo̞] 'son' Some speakers use the uvular pronunciation in all or most positions.
Swedish Southern sjuk [χʉːk] 'sick' Dialectal. See Swedish phonology
Tlingit tlaxh [tɬʰɐχ] 'very' Contrasts with labialized, ejective and labialized ejective form
Ubykh [asfəpχa] 'I need to eat it' Ubykh has ten different uvular fricatives. See Ubykh phonology
Uyghur یاخشی yaxshi [jɑχʃi] 'good'
Uzbek6 example needed Post-velar.6 Occurs in environments different than word-initially and pre-consonantally, otherwise it's pre-velar.
Welsh carchar [ˈkarχar] 'jail' See Welsh phonology
West Frisian berch [bɛrχ] 'mountain' Never occurs in word-initial positions.
Yiddish בוך [bʊχ] 'book' See Yiddish phonology

See also

References

Bibliography

  • Barbosa, Plínio A.; Albano, Eleonora C. (2004), "Brazilian Portuguese", Journal of the International Phonetic Association 34 (2): 227–232, doi:10.1017/S0025100304001756 
  • Dum-Tragut, Jasmine (2009), Armenian: Modern Eastern Armenian, Amsterdam: John Benjamins Publishing Company 
  • Hall, Tracy Alan (1993), "The phonology of German /ʀ/", Phonology 10 (1): 83–105, doi:10.1017/S0952675700001743 
  • Hess, Wolfgang (2001), "Funktionale Phonetik und Phonologie", Grundlagen der Phonetik, Bonn: Institut für Kommunikationsforschung und Phonetik, Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität 
  • Kohler, Klaus (1990), "Comment on German", Journal of the International Phonetic Association 20 (02): 44–46, doi:10.1017/S002510030000428X 
  • Martínez-Celdrán, Eugenio; Fernández-Planas, Ana Ma.; Carrera-Sabaté, Josefina (2003), "Castilian Spanish", Journal of the International Phonetic Association 33 (2): 255–259, doi:10.1017/S0025100303001373 
  • Sjoberg, Andrée F. (1963), Uzbek Structural Grammar 







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