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Encyclopedia > Approximant

Manners of articulation
Nasal consonant
Stop consonant
Fricative consonant
Lateral consonant
Approximant consonant
Liquid consonant
Flap consonant
Trill consonant
Ejective consonant
Implosive consonant
Click consonant
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Approximants are speech sounds that could be regarded as intermediate between vowels and typical consonants. In the articulation of approximants, articulatory organs produce a narrowing of the vocal tract, but leave enough space for air to flow without audible turbulence — approximants are therefore more open than fricatives. This class of sounds includes l-like lateral approximants (e.g. different variants of English /l/), several r-like rhotic sounds (e.g. [ɹ] as in red), and so-called semivowels, like [j] or [w] as in English yes and well.

Palatal semivowels correspond to front vowels, velar semivowels to back vowels, and labialized semivowels to rounded vowels. They are typically briefer, less stable and often closer than the corresponding vowels.

List of approximants

  • Voiced labial-velar approximant
  • Voiced labial-palatal approximant

See also

  Results from FactBites:
Phonotactics - Arden Reference Grammar (172 words)
In internal position, any consonant may appear geminated; in final position, geminate obstruents are barred.
In word initial position, four kinds of clusters may occur: 1) obstruent + approximant; 2) /s/ or /z/ + oral stop; 3) oral stop + liquid or approximant; 4) /s/ or /z/ (sonority as in case 2) + oral stop + liquid or approximant.
In word-final position, only one kind of cluster may occur, that is sonorant + obstruent.
MATLAB Central File Exchange - Pade' Approximant (245 words)
Computes coefficients of Pade' Approximants to symbolic functions.
This script will compute the coefficients for the "symmetric" Pade' approximant to a symbolic function expanded at x=0.
It also returns poles and zeros to ensure that the expansion does not have undesireable behavior in the region of interest.
  More results at FactBites »



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