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Coronal consonant
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This article contains phonetic transcriptions in the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA). For an introductory guide on IPA symbols, see Help:IPA. For the distinction between [ ], / / and ⟨ ⟩, see IPA § Brackets and transcription delimiters.
Coronal consonants are consonants articulated with the flexible front part of the tongue. Among places of articulation, only the coronal consonants can be divided into as many articulation types: apical (using the tip of the tongue), laminal (using the blade of the tongue), domed (with the tongue bunched up), or subapical (using the underside of the tongue) as well as different postalveolar articulations (some of which also involve the back of the tongue as an articulator): palato-alveolar, alveolo-palatal and retroflex. Only the front of the tongue (coronal) has such dexterity among the major places of articulation, allowing such variety of distinctions. Coronals have another dimension, grooved, to make sibilants in combination with the orientations above.
Places of articulation
Coronal places of articulation include the dental consonants at the upper teeth, the alveolar consonants at the upper gum (the alveolar ridge), the various postalveolar consonants (including domed palato-alveolar, laminal alveolo-palatal, and apical retroflex) just behind that, the subapical retroflex consonants curled back against the hard palate, and linguolabial consonants with the tongue against the upper lip. Alveolo-palatal and linguolabial consonants sometimes behave as dorsal and labial consonants, respectively, rather than as coronals.
Coronal sibilants
IPA
symbol
meaning
place
of articulation
passive
(mouth)
⟨s̪⟩dental
⟨s̟⟩advanced
(denti-alveolar)
⟨s͇⟩alveolar
⟨s̠⟩retracted
(postalveolar)
active
(tongue)
⟨s̺⟩apical
⟨s̻⟩laminal
⟨ʂ⟩retroflex
secondary⟨sʲ⟩palatalized coronal
⟨ɕ⟩alveolo-palatal
⟨ʃ⟩palato-alveolar
⟨sʷ⟩labialized coronal
⟨sˠ⟩velarized coronal
⟨sˤ⟩pharyngealized coronal
voice-onset time⟨sʰ⟩aspirated coronal
Examples
In Arabic and Maltese philology, the sun letters represent coronal consonants.
European
European coronal consonants
IPA
symbol
Name of the consonantLanguageExampleIPA
⟨z⟩Voiced alveolar sibilantEnglishzoo/zuː/
⟨s⟩Voiceless alveolar sibilantsea/siː/
⟨ð⟩Voiced dental fricativethat/ðæt/
⟨θ⟩Voiceless dental fricativethud/θʌd/
⟨ʒ⟩Voiced palato-alveolar fricativevision/ˈvɪʒən/
⟨ʃ⟩Voiceless palato-alveolar fricativeshe/ʃiː/
⟨n⟩Alveolar nasalname/neɪm/
⟨d⟩Voiced alveolar plosiveday/deɪ/
⟨t⟩Voiceless alveolar plosivetea/tiː/
⟨ɹ⟩Alveolar approximantreef/ɹiːf/
⟨l⟩Alveolar lateral approximantlift/lɪft/
⟨r⟩Alveolar trillSpanishperro/ˈpero/
⟨ɾ⟩Alveolar flappero/ˈpeɾo/
Australian Aboriginal
In Australian Aboriginal languages, coronals contrast with peripheral consonants.
Australian coronal consonants[1]
LaminalApical
AlveopalatalDentalAlveolarRetroflex
Stopc ~ t̠ʲtʈ
Nasalɲ ~ n̠ʲnɳ
Lateralʎ ~ l̠ʲlɭ
See also
References
^ Dixon, R. M. W. (2002). Australian Languages: Their Nature and Development. Cambridge University Press. p. 63. ISBN 0521473780, ISBN 978-0-521-47378-1.
Further reading
Ladefoged, Peter; Maddieson, Ian (1996). The Sounds of the World's Languages. Oxford: Blackwell. ISBN 978-0-631-19815-4.
Last edited on 9 March 2021, at 12:40
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