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Voiceless pharyngeal fricative: Wikis


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IPA – number 144
IPA – text ħ
IPA – image {{{imagesize}}}
Entity ħ
Kirshenbaum H
About this sound Sound sample

The voiceless pharyngeal fricative is a type of consonantal sound, used in some spoken languages. The symbol in the International Phonetic Alphabet that represents this sound is h-bar (ħ), and the equivalent X-SAMPA symbol is X\.



Features of the voiceless pharyngeal fricative:


This sound is the most commonly cited realization of the Semitic letter hēth, which occurs in most dialects of Arabic, Classical Syriac, as well as Biblical and Tiberian Hebrew. It has also been reconstructed as appearing in Ancient Egyptian, a related Afro-Asiatic language. Modern non-Oriental Hebrew has merged the voiceless pharyngeal fricative with the voiceless velar (or uvular) fricative. However, phonetic studies have shown that the so-called voiceless pharyngeal fricatives of Semitic languages are often neither pharyngeal (but rather epiglottal) nor fricatives (but rather approximants).[1]

Language Word IPA Meaning Notes
Abkhaz ҳара [ħaˈra] 'we'
Agul ? [muħ] 'barn'
Arabic Standard[2] واحد [wɑːˈħid] 'one' See Arabic phonology
Avar xIебецI [ħeˈbetsʼ] 'earwax'
Chechen ач/ [ħatʃ] 'plum'
Galician[3] gato [ˈħato] 'cat'
Hebrew חַשְׁמַל [ħaʃmal] 'electricity' Sephardic pronunciation, see Hebrew phonology
Kabardian щхьэ [ɕħæ] 'head'
Kabyle aḥeffaf [aħəffaf] 'hairdresser'
Kurdish hol [ħol] 'environment' dialectal; [h] in most Kurdish dialects
Maltese Standard wieħed [wiħːed] 'one'
Sioux Nakota [haħdanahã] 'yesterday'
Somali xood [ħoːd] 'cane'

See also



  • Ladefoged, Peter & Ian Maddieson (1996), The Sounds of the World's Languages, Blackwell, ISBN 0-631-19815-6
  • Regueira, Xose (1996), "Galician", Journal of the International Phonetic Association 26 (2): 119-122
  • Watson, Janet (2002), written at New York, The Phonology and Morphology of Arabic, Oxford University Press


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