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Encyclopedia > Diphthong

In phonetics, a diphthong (also gliding vowel) (Greek δίφθογγος, "diphthongos", literally "with two sounds," or "with two tones") is a monosyllabic vowel combination involving a quick but smooth movement from one vowel to another, often interpreted by listeners as a single vowel sound or phoneme. While "pure" vowels, or monophthongs, are said to have one target tongue position, diphthongs have two target tongue positions. Pure vowels are represented in the International Phonetic Alphabet by one symbol: English "sum" as /sʌm/, for example. Diphthongs are represented by two symbols, for example English "same" as /seɪm/, where the two vowel symbols are intended to represent approximately the beginning and ending tongue positions. Image File history File links This is a lossless scalable vector image. ... Image File history File links Question_book-3. ... Phonetics (from the Greek word φωνή, phone meaning sound or voice) is the study of the sounds of human speech. ... For the computer operating system, see Syllable (operating system). ... Note: This page contains IPA phonetic symbols in Unicode. ... Glissando (plural: glissandi) is a musical term that refers to either a continuous sliding from one pitch to another (a true glissando), or an incidental scale played while moving from one melodic note to another (an effective glissando). ... In human language, a phoneme is the theoretical representation of a sound. ... A monophthong (in Greek μονόφθογγος = single note) is a pure vowel sound, one whose articulation at both beginning and end is relatively fixed, and which does not glide up or down towards a new position of articulation; compare diphthong. ...

Contents

Types of diphthongs

Falling (or descending) diphthongs start with a vowel of higher prominence (higher pitch or louder) and end in a vowel with less prominence, like /aɪ̯/ in "eye", while rising (or ascending) diphthongs begin with a less prominent vowel and end with a more prominent vowel, like /ɪ̯a/ in "yard". The element with less prominence in the diphthong may be transcribed as a semivowel in the case that there is a corresponding one, thus e.g. /ja/. However, when the whole diphthong is analysed as being one single phoneme, both elements are often transcribed as vowels. Note also that in languages like English and Italian, rising diphthongs are considered not true diphthongs by many phoneticians, but sequences of a semivowel and a vowel. In linguistics, stress is the relative emphasis that may be given to certain syllables in a word. ... Semivowels (also glides, more rarely: semiconsonants) are non-syllabic vowels that form diphthongs with syllabic vowels. ... Phonetics (from the Greek word phone = sound/voice) is the study of speech sounds (voice). ...


In closing diphthongs, the second element is more close than the first (e.g. [ai]); in opening diphthongs, more open (e.g. [ia]). Closing diphthongs tend to be falling, and opening diphthongs are generally rising, because open vowels are more sonorous and therefore tend to be more prominent. However, exceptions to this rule are not rare in the world's languages. In Finnish, for instance, the opening diphthongs /ie/ and /uo/ are true falling diphthongs, since they begin louder and with higher pitch and fall in prominence during the diphthong (this is indicated by bolding in the previous transcriptions). A close vowel is a type of vowel sound used in many spoken languages. ... An open vowel is a vowel sound of a type used in most spoken languages. ... A database query syntax error has occurred. ...


A centering diphthong is one that begins with a more peripheral vowel and ends with a more central one, such as /ɪə/, /ɛə/, and /ʊə/ in Received Pronunciation or /iə/ and /uə/ in Irish. Many centering diphthongs, namely those that begin with a close or close-mid vowel, are also opening diphthongs (eg. [iə], [uə]). Note: This page or section contains IPA phonetic symbols in Unicode. ... A close-mid vowel is a type of vowel sound used in some spoken languages. ...


Some languages contrast short and long diphthongs, the latter usually being described as having a long first element. Languages that contrast three quantities in diphthongs are extremely rare, but not unheard of: Northern Sami is known to contrast long, short and finally stressed diphthongs, the last of which are distinguished by a long second element. Northern or North Sami (also written Sámi or Saami; formerly Lappish or Lapp) is the most widely spoken of all Sami languages. ...


Diphthongs in various languages

Czech

There are three diphthongs in Czech:

  • /aʊ̯/ as in auto (almost exclusively in words of foreign origin)
  • /eʊ̯/ as in euro (in words of foreign origin only)
  • /oʊ̯/ as in koule

Vowel groups ia, ie, ii, io, and iu in foreign words are not regarded as diphthongs, they are pronounced with /j/ between the vowels [ɪja, ɪjɛ, ɪjɪ, ɪjo, ɪju].


Dutch

Diphthongs in Dutch:

  • /ɛɪ/ as in eind, ijs "end, ice"
  • /ʌu/ as in koude, auto, "cold, car"
  • /œy/ as in huis, "house"
  • /yu/ as in duwen, "to push"
  • /eu/ as in leeuw, "lion"
  • /ei/ as in been, "leg"
  • /øy/ as in leuk, "nice"
  • /ou/ as in boot, "boat"

Note that the last three diphthongs (/ei/, /øy/ and /ou/) are traditionally grouped with the 'long vowels' also including monophthong /a/ (see Dutch phonology). In many Dutch dialects, some or many of the diphthongs are monophthongized and lengthened (more than the mentioned 'long vowels'). For example in the dialect spoken in The Hague and various Flemish dialects, /ɛɪ/, /ʌu/ and /œy/ are pronounced as [ɛː], [ɑː] (or [ʌː]) and [œː] respectively. A monophthong (in Greek μονόφθογγος = single note) is a pure vowel sound, one whose articulation at both beginning and end is relatively fixed, and which does not glide up or down towards a new position of articulation; compare diphthong. ... Note: This page contains IPA phonetic symbols in Unicode. ... Hague redirects here. ... Flemish (Vlaams in Dutch), as the general adjective relating to Flanders, can refer to the speech of the Flemings, inhabitants of Flanders, though for the Flemish Community[1], Algemeen Nederlands (Common Dutch) is the official name of the standard language hence in English referred to as standard Dutch. ...


English

See also: International Phonetic Alphabet for English
Standard English diphthongs
RP (British) Australian American
GA Canadian
low /əʊ/ /əʉ/ /oʊ/
loud /aʊ/ /æɔ/ /aʊ/ /aʊ/
lout [əʊ]1
lied /aɪ/ /ɑe/ /aɪ/ /aɪ/
light [əɪ]1
lane /eɪ/ /æɪ/ /eɪ/
loin /ɔɪ/ /oɪ/ /ɔɪ/
leer /ɪə/ /ɪə/ /ɪɚ/³
lair /ɛə/² /eː/ ² /ɛɚ/³
lure /ʊə/² /ʊə/ /ʊɚ/³
  1. Canadian English, exhibits allophony of /aʊ/ and /aɪ/ called Canadian raising.
  2. In Received Pronunciation, the vowels in lair and lure may be monophthongized to [ɛː] and [oː] respectively.[citation needed] Australian English already monophthongizes the former but is listed here anyway.
  3. In Rhotic dialects, words like pair, poor, and peer can be analyzed as diphthongs, although other descriptions analyze them as vowels with /ɹ/ in the coda.[citation needed]

The symbols of the International Phonetic Alphabet can be used to show pronounciation in English. ... Note: This page or section contains IPA phonetic symbols in Unicode. ... Note: This page or section contains IPA phonetic symbols in Unicode. ... In phonetics, an allophone is one of several similar phones that belong to the same phoneme. ... Canadian raising is a phonetic phenomenon that occurs in varieties of the English language, especially Canadian English, in which diphthongs are raised before voiceless consonants (e. ... Note: This page or section contains IPA phonetic symbols in Unicode. ...

Faroese

Diphthongs in Faroese are:

  • /ai/ as in bein (can also be short)
  • /au/ as in havn
  • /ɛa/ as in har, mær
  • /ɛi/ as in hey
  • /ɛu/ as in nevnd
  • /œu/ as in nøvn
  • /ʉu/ as in hús
  • /ʊi/ as in mín, , (can also be short)
  • /ɔa/ as in ráð
  • /ɔi/ as in hoyra (can also be short)
  • /ɔu/ as in sól, ovn

Finnish

Diphthongs in Finnish

closing
  • /ai/ as in laiva (ship)
  • /ei/ as in keinu (swing)
  • /oi/ as in poika (boy)
  • /æi/ as in äiti (mother)
  • /øi/ as in öisin (at night)
  • /au/ as in lauha (mild)
  • /eu/ as in leuto (mild)
  • /ou/ as in koulu (school)
  • /ey/ as in leyhyä (to waft)
  • /æy/ as in täysi (full)
  • /øy/ as in löytää (to find)
close
  • /ui/ as in uida (to swim)
  • /yi/ as in lyijy (lead)
  • /iu/ as in viulu (violin)
  • /iy/ as in siistiytyä (to clean up)
opening
  • /ie/ as in kieli (tongue)
  • /uo/ as in suo (bog)
  • /yø/ as in (night)

French

Some diphthongs in French:

  • /wa/ as in roi "king"
  • /wi/ as in oui "yes"
  • /ɥi/ as in huit "eight"
  • /jɛ̃/ as in bien "well (adv.)"
  • /jɛ/ as in Ariège
  • /aj/ as in travail "work"
  • /ej/ as in Marseille
  • /œj/ as in feuille "leaf"
  • /uj/ as in grenouille "frog"
  • /jø/ as in vieux "old"

All French diphthongs are typically analysed as a combination of a vowel and a semi-vowel (in either order).


German

Diphthongs in German:

  • /aɪ/ as in Reich 'empire'
  • /aʊ/ as in Maus 'mouse'
  • /ɔʏ/ as in neu 'new'
  • /eːɐ/ as in der 'the (masculine)'
  • /iːɐ/ as in dir 'you (dative)'
  • /oːɐ/ as in Bor 'boron (element)'
  • /øːɐ/ as in fördern 'to mine, convey, carry, etc.'
  • /uːɐ/ as in nur 'only'
  • /yːɐ/ as in Tür 'door'

Some diphthongs in Bernese, a Swiss German dialect: Bernese German is the dialect of High Alemannic German spoken in the Swiss plateau (Mittelland) part of the canton of Bern and in some neighbouring regions. ... Swiss German (Schweizerdeutsch, Schwyzerdütsch, Schwiizertüütsch, Schwizertitsch) is any of the Alemannic dialects spoken in Switzerland. ...

  • /iə/ as in Bier 'beer'
  • /yə/ as in Füess 'feet'
  • /uə/ as in Schue 'shoes'
  • /ow/ as in Stou 'holdup'
  • /aw/ as in Stau 'stable'
  • /aːw/ as in Staau 'steel'
  • /æw/ as in Wäut 'world'
  • /æːw/ as in wääut 'elects'
  • /ʊw/ as in tschúud 'guilty'

hebrew

in hebrew three Diphthongs

vowel coson
a j
e j
o j

Hungarian

The general consensus is that standard Hungarian has no diphthongs. However linguists[attribution needed] acknowledge that even in standard speech word-initial au- (as in autó 'car', augusztus 'August') is often realised as one syllable, that is like the diphthong [ɒu̯] or [ɒʊ̯]. Note, that in other positions and native words (the above examples are loan words) even the abovementioned speakers realise <au> with a hiatus, that is as two syllables in words like kalauz /ˈkɒ.lɒ.uz/. On the other hand some phoneticians[attribution needed] argue, that -aj, -ej, -éj etc. (e.g. in haj 'hair', fej 'head') in Hungarian are actually diphthongs /ɒɪ̯/, /ɛɪ̯/, etc. However this view is not shared by many, the general position being that this is a vowel–consonant combination /aj/, /ɛj/, etc. respectively. (This is supported by many facts, one of them being that agglutinated forms of the word separate the semivowel from the vowel into another syllable: fejes 'with head, related to head (adj.)' /fɛ.jɛʃ/ rather than hypothetical *[fɛɪ̯.ɛʃ]). Look up hiatus in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ...


Note, that many Hungarian dialects have diphthongs in place of Standard Hungarian long vowels, such as [øy] for /ő/, [ɒu] for /ó/ (northeastern dialect), or [uo] for /ó/ (western dialect).


Icelandic

Diphthongs in Icelandic are the following:

  • /aw/ as in átta, "eight"
  • /ow/ as in nóg, "enough"
  • /œɥ/ as in auga, "eye"
  • /aj/ as in , "hi"
  • /ej/ as in þeir, "they"

Combinations of j and a vowel are the following:

  • /ja/ as in jata, "manger"
  • /jaw/ as in , "yes"
  • /jo/ as in joð, "iodine," "jay," "yod" (only in a handful of words of foreign origin)
  • /jow/ as in jól, "Christmas"
  • /jœ/ as in jötunn, "giant"
  • /jaj/ as in jæja, "oh well"

Italian

Diphthongs in standard Italian:

falling
  • /ai/ as in avrai
  • /ei/ as in dei (preposition)
  • /ɛi/ as in direi
  • /oi/ as in voi
  • /ɔi/ as in poi
  • /au/ as in pausa
  • /eu/ as in Europa
  • /ɛu/ as in feudo
rising
  • /ja/ as in piano
  • /je/ as in ateniese
  • /jɛ/ as in piede
  • /jo/ as in fiore
  • /jɔ/ as in piove
  • /ju/ as in più
  • /wa/ as in guado
  • /we/ as in quello
  • /wɛ/ as in guerra
  • /wi/ as in qui
  • /wo/ as in liquore
  • /wɔ/ as in nuoto

Other combinations (including [ui], [iu], [ii]) are often considered hiatuses by grammarians; however they are often phonetically true diphthongs, such as in poetry and common speech. Hiatus in linguistics is the separate pronunciation of two adjacent vowels, sometimes with an intervening glottal stop. ... This article is about grammar from a linguistic perspective. ... This article is about the art form. ...


Latvian

Diphthongs in Latvian

falling
  • /ai/ as in laiva
  • /ei/ as in beigas
  • /oi/ as in koika
  • /ui/ as in puika
  • /au/ as in tauva
  • /eu/ as in tev
  • /iu/ as in pliukš
  • /ou/ as in souls
  • /yu/ as in myusu (dial.)
  • /ie/ as in iela
  • /uo/ as in ruoka
  • /ae/ as in faetons
  • /ao/ as in aorta
  • /oa/ as in foajē
  • /ua/ as in puante
  • /ue/ as in Sueca
  • /ja/ as in slapja

as also /jā/, /jai/, /jau/, /je/, /jē/, /jæː/, /ji/, /jie/, /jō/, /ju/, /juo/, /jū/

  • /wa/ as in lauva
  • /wai/ as in lauvai
  • /wā/ as in lauvā
  • /we/ as in lauvene
  • /wæː/ as in lauvēns
  • /wi/ as in lauviņa
  • /wu/ as in lauvu
rising
  • /aī/ as in Aīda
  • /aū/ as in Saūda
  • /eā/ as in teātris
  • /eō/ as in neōns
  • /eū/ as in Seūla
  • /iā/ as in piāno
  • /iē/ as in diēzs
  • /iī/ as in šiīts
  • /iō/ as in odiōzs
  • /oā/ as in oāze
  • /oē/ as in poēma
  • /oī/ as in asteroīds
  • /uā/ as in kuluāri
  • /uī/ as in fluīdi
  • /uō/ as in fluōrs
  • /uū/ as in vakuūms

Northern Sami

The diphthong system in Northern Sami varies considerably from one dialect to another. The Western Finnmark dialects distinguish four different qualities of opening diphthongs: Northern or North Sami (also written Sámi or Saami; formerly Lappish or Lapp) is the most widely spoken of all Sami languages. ...

  • /eæ/ as in leat "to be"
  • /ie/ as in giella "language"
  • /oa/ as in boahtit "to come"
  • /uo/ as in vuodjat "to swim"

In terms of quantity, Northern Sami shows a three-way contrast between long, short and finally stressed diphthongs. The last are distinguished from long and short diphthongs by a markedly long and stressed second component. Diphthong quantity is not indicated in spelling.


Norwegian

There are five diphthongs in Norwegian:

  • /æɪ/ as in nei, "no"
  • /øʏ/ as in øy, "island"
  • /æʉ/ as in sau, "sheep"
  • /ɑɪ/ as in hai, "shark"
  • /ɔʏ/ as in joik, "Sami song"

In addition there is the diphthong /ʉʏ/, but this only occur in the word hui in the expression i hui og hast "in great haste".


Portuguese

Falling diphthongs with /i/ or /u/ as their weaker vowel are frequent in Portuguese. Rising diphthongs, with /i/ or /u/ as their weaker vowel, occur less often, and many of them may also be analysed as hiatuses, e.g., fé-ri-as [ˈfɛɾiɐʃ] (three syllables, with a hiatus) or fé-rias [ˈfɛɾjɐʃ] (two syllables, with a diphthong). The difference between a rising diphthong and a hiatus is not phonemic; the former are usually found in colloquial speech, and the latter in careful pronunciation. Triphthongs also occur (e.g. [wai̯] as in Paraguai, or [jau̯] as in miau), and even longer sequences, but they can be analysed as sequences of vowels (or allophonic approximants) and diphthongs. Just like the monophthongs, diphthongs are divided into two subgroups, oral and nasal. Image File history File links This is a lossless scalable vector image. ... Hiatus in linguistics is the separate pronunciation of two adjacent vowels, sometimes with an intervening glottal stop. ... Approximants are speech sounds that could be regarded as intermediate between vowels and typical consonants. ...

oral
  • /ai/ as in pai
  • /ei/ as in peito (or /ɐi/, in some dialects)
  • /ɛi/ as in papéis (merged with /ei ~ ɐi/ in some dialects)
  • /oi/ as in coisa
  • /ɔi/ as in mói
  • /ui/ as in fui
  • /au/ as in mau
  • /eu/ as in seu
  • /ɛu/ as in céu
  • /ou/ as in roupa (monophthongized to /o/ in many dialects)
nasal
  • /ɐ̃ĩ/ as in mãe
  • /ẽĩ/ as in bem (merged with /ɐ̃ĩ/ in some dialects)
  • /õĩ/ as in põe
  • /ũĩ/ as in muita
  • /ɐ̃ũ/ as in são

Romanian

Romanian builds its descending diphthongs using two semivowels and its ascending diphthongs using four. See also Romanian phonology. The Romanian language has seven vowels and twenty-two consonants, including two semivowels, and . ...

falling
  • /aj/ as in mai
  • /aw/ as in dau
  • /ej/ as in lei
  • /ew/ as in leu
  • /ij/ as in mii (no vocalic glide, but still a diphthong)
  • /iw/ as in fiu
  • /oj/ as in goi
  • /ow/ as in nou
  • /uj/ as in pui
  • /əj/ as in răi
  • /əw/ as in rău
  • /ɨj/ as in câine
  • /ɨw/ as in râu
rising
  • /ea/ as in stea
  • /eo/ as in George
  • /ja/ as in iapă
  • /je/ as in fier
  • /jo/ as in chior
  • /ju/ as in iubit
  • /oa/ as in oameni
  • /wa/ as in ziua
  • /wə/ as in două

Spanish

Spanish has six falling diphthongs and eight rising diphthongs. In addition, during fast speech, sequences of vowels in hiatus become diphthongs wherein one becomes non-syllabic (unless they are the same vowel, in which case they fuse together) as in poeta [ˈpo̯eta] ('poet') and maestro [ˈmae̯stɾo] ('teacher'). The phonemic diphthongs are:[1]

falling
  • /ei/ as in rey ('king')
  • /ai/ as in aire ('air')
  • /oi/ as in hoy ('today')
  • /eu/ as in neutro ('neutral')
  • /au/ as in pausa ('break')
  • /ou/ as in bou ('seine fishing')
rising
  • /je/ as in tierra ('earth')
  • /ja/ as in hacia ('towards')
  • /jo/ as in radio ('radio')
  • /ju/ as in viuda ('widow')
  • /wi/ as in fuimos ('we went')
  • /we/ as in fuego ('fire')
  • /wa/ as in cuadro ('picture')
  • /wo/ as in cuota ('quota')

Fishermen catching salmon on the Columbia River using a seine. ...

References

  1. ^ Martínez-Celdrán et al (2003:256)

In phonetics, a diphthong (also gliding vowel) (Greek δίφθογγος, diphthongos, literally with two sounds, or with two tones) is a monosyllabic vowel combination involving a quick but smooth movement from one vowel to another, often interpreted by listeners as a single vowel sound or phoneme. ...

Bibliography

  • Martínez-Celdrán, Eugenio; Ana Ma. Fernández-Planas & Josefina Carrera-Sabaté (2003), "Castilian Spanish", Journal of the International Phonetic Association 33 (2): 255-259

See also


  Results from FactBites:
 
Diphthong - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (606 words)
In phonetics, a diphthong (Greek δίφθογγος, "diphthongos", literally "with two sounds," or "with two tones") is a vowel combination in a single syllable involving a quick but smooth movement from one vowel to another, often interpreted by listeners as a single vowel sound or phoneme.
The element with less sonority in the diphthong may be transcribed as semivowel.
The difference between a rising diphthong and a hiatus is not phonemic; the former are usually found in colloquial speech, and the latter in careful pronunciation.
Diphthong articles on Encyclopedia.com (414 words)
English ē is pronounced as a diphthong of Ĭ and y.
A is a usual symbol for a low central vowel, as in father; the English long a (ā) is pronounced as a diphthong of ĕ and y.
J is a formal development from I. English is pronounced as a diphthong of ä and y.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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