Voiceless alveolar flap

Voiceless alveolar tap
IPA number 124 402A

The voiceless alveolar tap or flap is rare as a phoneme. The symbols in the International Phonetic Alphabet that represent this sound are ɾ̥ and ɾ̊, combinations of the letter for the voiced alveolar tap/flap and a diacritic indicating voicelessness, either above or below the letter. The equivalent X-SAMPA symbol is 4_0.


Features of the voiceless alveolar flap:



Language Word IPA Meaning Notes
Bengali[1] আবার [ˈäbäɾ̥] 'again' Possible allophone of /ɹ/ in the syllable coda.[1] See Bengali phonology
Greek Cypriot αδερφός [ɐðe̞ɾ̥ˈfo̞s] 'brother' Allophone of /ɾ/ before voiceless consonants. May be a voiceless alveolar trill instead
Icelandic hrafn [ˈɾ̥apn̪̊] 'raven' Realization of /r̥/ for some speakers. Also illustrates /n̥/. See Icelandic phonology
Portuguese European[2] assar [əˈsäɾ̥] 'to bake' Apparent allophone of /ɾ/; distribution unclear, but common in the coda in Jesus (2001)'s corpus. See Portuguese phonology

Voiceless alveolar tapped fricative

Voiceless alveolar tapped fricative
IPA number 124 402A 430

A tapped fricative is in effect a very brief fricative, with the tongue making the gesture for a tapped stop but not making full contact. This can be indicated in the IPA with the lowering diacritic to show full occlusion did not occur.

Tapped fricatives are occasionally reported in the literature, though these claims are not generally independently confirmed and so remain dubious.

Flapped fricatives are theoretically possible but are not attested.[3]


Features of the voiceless alveolar tapped fricative:


Reported from Turkish in a single source.[4] A " voiceless apico-alveolar flap with variable friction" is reported as the word-initial allophone (and one of four word-final allophones) of /r/ in Kobon. It is also reported from Afenmai, where it is the "tense" equivalent of "lax" [ɾ].

Language Word IPA Meaning Notes
Afenmai[3] [aɾ̞̊u] 'hat' Tense equivalent of lax /ɾ/.[3]
Turkish bir [biɾ̝̊] 'a(n)' Word-final allophone of /ɾ/. See Turkish phonology

See also


  1. 1 2 Khan (2010:224)
  2. Jesus (2001)
  3. 1 2 3 Laver (1994) Principles of Phonetics, p. 263.
  4. Yavuz & Balcı (2011:25)


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