Study your flashcards anywhere!

Download the official Cram app for free >

  • Shuffle
    Toggle On
    Toggle Off
  • Alphabetize
    Toggle On
    Toggle Off
  • Front First
    Toggle On
    Toggle Off
  • Both Sides
    Toggle On
    Toggle Off
  • Read
    Toggle On
    Toggle Off

How to study your flashcards.

Right/Left arrow keys: Navigate between flashcards.right arrow keyleft arrow key

Up/Down arrow keys: Flip the card between the front and back.down keyup key

H key: Show hint (3rd side).h key

A key: Read text to speech.a key


Play button


Play button




Click to flip

8 Cards in this Set

  • Front
  • Back
Stops and affricates. Also Nasal stops.
p/b t/d k/g/?
f/v θ/ð s/z ʃ ʒ h ʧ ʤ
Total obstruction of the airstream in the oral cavity.

all other consonants and ALL vowels are Continuants
ALL vowels are Continuants

A continuant is a sound produced with an incomplete closure of the vocal tract. That is, any sound except a stop (plosive) or nasal. An affricate is considered to be a complex segment, composed of both a stop and a continuant.
The non-nasal stops, the fricatives, and the afficates.

The airstream may be fully obstructed, or nearly fully obstructed.
Sounds that aren't obstruents.
nasal stops (m, n, ŋ )
liquids [l , r]
glides [j,w]

In phonetics and phonology, a sonorant is a speech sound that is produced without turbulent airflow in the vocal tract; fricatives and plosives (for example, /z/ and /d/, respectively) are not sonorants. Vowels are sonorants, as are consonants like /m/ and /l/. Other consonants, like /d/ or /s/, restrict the airflow enough to cause turbulence, and so are non-sonorant. In addition to vowels, phonetic categorizations of sounds that are considered sonorant include approximants, nasal consonants, taps, and trills. In the sonority hierarchy, all sounds higher than fricatives are sonorants. They can therefore form the nucleus of a syllable in languages that place that distinction at that level of sonority.

Sonorants are those articulations in which there is only a partial closure or an unimpeded oral or nasal scape of air; such articulations, typically voiced, and frequently frictionless, without noise component, may share many phonetic characteristics with vowels.

Sonorants contrast with obstruents, which do cause turbulence in the vocal tract.

Whereas most obstruents are voiceless, the great majority of sonorants are voiced.

A typical sonorant inventory found in many languages comprises the following: two nasals /m/, /n/, two semivowels /w/, /j/, and two liquids /l/, /r/.

English has the following sonorant consonantal phonemes: /l/, /m/, /n/, /ŋ/, /ɹ/, /w/, /j/
Obstruents, nasal stops, liquids,glides (minimal restriction)

In articulatory phonetics, a consonant is a speech sound that is articulated with complete or partial closure of the vocal tract. Examples are [p], pronounced with the lips; [t], pronounced with the front of the tongue; [k], pronounced with the back of the tongue; [h], pronounced in the throat; [f] and [s], pronounced by forcing air through a narrow channel (fricatives); and [m] and [n], which have air flowing through the nose (nasals). Contrasting with consonants are vowels.

Since the number of possible sounds in all of the world's languages is much greater than the number of letters in any one alphabet, linguists have devised systems such as the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) to assign a unique and unambiguous symbol to each attested consonant. In fact, the Latin alphabet, which is used to write English, has fewer consonant letters than English has consonant sounds, so digraphs like "ch", "sh", "th", and "zh" are used to extend the alphabet, and some letters and digraphs represent more than one consonant. For example, the sound spelled "th" in "this" is a different consonant than the "th" sound in "thin". (In the IPA they are transcribed [ð] and [θ], respectively.)

Consonants and vowels correspond to distinct parts of a syllable: The most sonorous part of the syllable (that is, the part that's easiest to sing), called the syllabic peak or nucleus, is typically a vowel, while the less sonorous margins (called the onset and coda) are typically consonants. Such syllables may be abbreviated CV, V, and CVC, where C stands for consonant and V stands for vowel. This can be argued to be the only pattern found in most of the world's languages, and perhaps the primary pattern in all of them. However, the distinction between consonant and vowel is not always clear cut: there are syllabic consonants and non-syllabic vowels in many of the world's languages.

One blurry area is in segments variously called semivowels, semiconsonants, or glides. On the one side, there are vowel-like segments that are not in themselves syllabic but that form diphthongs as part of the syllable nucleus, as the i in English boil [ˈbɔɪ̯l]. On the other, there are approximants that behave like consonants in forming onsets but are articulated very much like vowels, as the y in English yes [ˈjɛs]. Some phonologists model these as both being the underlying vowel /i/, so that the English word bit would phonemically be /bit/, beet would be /bii̯t/, and yield would be phonemically /i̯ii̯ld/. Likewise, foot would be /fut/, food would be /fuu̯d/, wood would be /u̯ud/, and wooed would be /u̯uu̯d/. However, there is a (perhaps allophonic) difference in articulation between these segments, with the [j] in [ˈjɛs] yes and [ˈjiʲld] yield and the [w] of [ˈwuʷd] wooed having more constriction and a more definite place of articulation than the [ɪ] in [ˈbɔɪ̯l] boil or [ˈbɪt] bit or the [ʊ] of [ˈfʊt].
Coronal consonant
Coronal consonants are articulated with the flexible front part of the tongue. Only the coronal consonants can be divided into 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 a few rarer orientations[which?], because only the front of the tongue has such dexterity. Coronals also have another dimension, grooved, that is used to make sibilants in combination with the orientations above.

Symbol Name of the consonant Example IPA
z Voiced alveolar fricative zoo /zuː/
s Voiceless alveolar fricative sea /siː/
ð Voiced dental fricative that /ðæt/
θ Voiceless dental fricative thud /θʌd/
ʒ Voiced postalveolar fricative vision /vɪʒən/
ʃ Voiceless postalveolar fricative she /ʃiː/
n Alveolar nasal name /neɪm/
d Voiced alveolar plosive day /deɪ/
t Voiceless alveolar plosive tea /tiː/
ɹ Alveolar approximant reef /ɹiːf/
l Lateral alveolar approximant lift /lɪft/
r Alveolar trill Spanish perro /pero/
ɾ Alveolar tap Spanish pero /peɾo/
are consonants produced in the front part of the mouth, that is, from the alveolar area forward.
They include the labials, the interdentals, and the alveolars
A sibilant is a manner of articulation of fricative and affricate consonants, made by directing a stream of air with the tongue towards the sharp edge of the teeth, which are held close together. Examples of sibilants are the consonants at the beginning of the English words sip, zip, ship, chip, and Jeep, and the second consonant in vision. The symbols in the International Phonetic Alphabet used to denote the sibilant sounds in these words are, respectively, [s] [z] [ʃ] [tʃ] [dʒ] [ʒ]. (The sounds [tʃ] [dʒ], as in chip and Jeep, are affricates; the rest are fricatives.) Sibilants have a characteristically intense sound, which accounts for their non-linguistic use in getting one's attention (e.g. calling someone using "sssst!" or quieting someone using "shhhh!").

In the alveolar hissing sibilants [s] and [z], the back of the tongue forms a narrow channel (is grooved) to focus the stream of air more intensely, resulting in a high pitch. With the hushing sibilants (occasionally termed shibilants), such as English [ʃ], [tʃ], [ʒ], and [dʒ], the tongue is flatter, and the resulting pitch lower.[citation needed][we need cite that they are not grooved]

Sibilants may also be called stridents, a term which refers to the perceptual intensity of the sound of a sibilant consonant, or obstacle fricatives/affricates, which refers to the critical role of the teeth in producing the sound as an obstacle to the airstream. Non-sibilant fricatives and affricates produce their characteristic sound directly with the tongue or lips etc. and the place of contact in the mouth, without secondary involvement of the teeth.

The characteristic intensity of sibilants means that small variations in tongue shape and position are perceivable, with the result that there are a large number of sibilant types that contrast in various languages.

All sibilants are coronal consonants (made with the tip or front part of the tongue).

Not including differences in manner of articulation or secondary articulation, some languages have as many as four different types of sibilants. For example, Northern Qiang and Southern Qiang have a four-way distinction among sibilant affricates /ts/ /tʂ/ /tʃ/ /tɕ/, with one for each of the four tongue shapes. Toda also has a four-way sibilant distinction, with one alveolar, one palato-alveolar, and two retroflex (apical postalveolar and subapical palatal).