Studium anglistiky na KAA UPOL

(7) Allophones of English Consonants


Variations in the Manner

- aspiration, indicated by a small raised letter h [h] = a period of voicelessness after the stop articulation and before the start of the voicing for the vowel (‘pie, tie, kye’ [phaɪ, thaɪ, khaɪ])

- unexploded consonant, indicated by a small raised mark []: syllable- or word-final consonant unexploded when the next syllable or word begins a stop or nasal (‘the cat pushed [ðə 'khæt 'phʊʃt], ‘apt’ [æpt], ‘act’ [ækt])

- absence of this rule in oth. languages, a mark of foreign accent to explode all final stop consonants and add an extra vowel at the end (‘it’s a big day’ [ɪts ə 'bɪg 'deɪ] x *[ɪts ə 'bɪgə 'deɪ])

- a glottal stop, indicated by a question mark without the dot [ʔ] = the sound, or the lack of sound, produced with the vocal cords held tightly together (m̩ hm̩ ] for ‘yes’ x ['ʔm̩ʔm̩ ] for ‘no’)

- glottal stops frequently as allophones of /t/ (‘beaten’ ['biʔn̩ ], ‘kitten’ ['kɪʔn̩ ], ‘fatten’ ['fæʔn̩ ])

- a syllabic consonant, indicated by [ˌ]

- homorganic sounds = two sounds with the same place of articulation

(a) nasal plosion = the release through the nose of the air pressure built up in the mouth when a voiced stop and a homorganic nasal occur in the same word (‘sadden’ ['sædn̩ ], ‘sudden’ ['sʌdn̩ ], ‘leaden’ ['lεdn̩ ])

- a mark of foreign accent to add a vowel ['sædən, 'sʌdən, 'lεdən]

(b) lateral plosion = the release by lowering the sides of the tongue of the air pressure built up in the mouth when a stop and a homorganic lateral occur in the same word (‘little’ ['lɪtl̩ ], ‘ladle’ ['leɪdl̩ ])

- a flap [ɾ]: GA [t] changed into a voiced sound after a stressed vowel and before an unstressed syllable oth. than [n̩] (‘city’ ['sɪɾ i], ‘better, writer’)

Variations in the Place

- coarticulations = the overlapping of adjacent articulations, present in all utterances

- anticipatory coarticulation = anticipation of the articulations of the sounds yet to come (a stop unexploded before another consonant in ‘apt’ [æpt], etc.)

- perseverative coarticulation = the actions involved in making one sound continue into the next (‘it is’ [ɪt ɪz] > ‘it’s’ [ɪts])

- E = an anticipatory language

- the feature that two consecutive sounds have in common will be retained throughout the transition btw them

- articulators not involved in the primary articulation will take up twd the articulation of the following item

- a general tendency in E to equalise the lengths of syllables differing in the number of segments x but: stressed syllables longer than the corresponding unstressed ones

- target positions = the positions of the vocal organs specified for a given sound; remain always the same x but: the resulting articulation may be changed by the neighbouring sounds

- targets = units used in describing how a speaker produces utterances

- x phonemes = more abstract units used in describing languages to show how one word contrasts with another


- fricatives resemble stops

- both groups the only E consonants to contrast by being voiced x voiceless

- both infl. vowel length: vowels shorter before voiceless consonants than before voiced ones

- syllable- or word-final voiceless consonants longer than voiced ones in the same position

- syllable- or word-final voiced consonants fully voiced throughout the articulation only before another voiced sound

- obstruents = a natural class of sounds incl. both fricatives and stops /p, b, t, d, k, g, f, v, θ, ð, s, z, ʃ, ʒ/ [+ obstruent] x all oth. E sounds [– obstruent]


- [tʃ] and [dʒ] = sequences of a stop followed by a homorganic fricative

- from a phonological POV and wrt the sound pattern of E consid. single units


- [ŋ] = a sequence of the phonemes /n/ + /g/

- phonemically: ‘sing’ /sɪng/ x but: [sɪŋg] accord. to the phonological rule of /n/ before /g/ and /k/ > the allophone [ŋ]

- the status of [ŋ] different from the oth. nasals

- cannot be syllabic at the end of word like the oth. nasals together with [ɹ, l]

- cannot occur at the beginning of word


- devoicing of a vowel, indicated by [h]: a vowel after the voiceless stops /p, t, k/ partially voiceless (‘pie’ [phaɪ], ‘tie’ [thaɪ], ‘kye’ [khaɪ])

- devoicing of a consonant, indicated by [ ۪ ]: an approximant after the voiceless stops /p, t, k/ voiceless (‘play’ [pl̥eɪ], ‘twice’ [tw̥aɪs], ‘clay’ [kl̥eɪ], ‘cue’ [kj̥u])

- velarization, indicated by [~] = the arching upwards of the back of the tongue

- GA: all examples of /l/ > [ł]

- RP: only word-final or before a consonant (‘feel’ [fił], ‘ball’, ‘filled’)

Základní údaje

  • Předmět

  • Semestr

    Zimní semestr 2002/03.
  • Vyučující

    Šárka Šimáčková.
  • Status

    Povinný seminář a přednáška.


Cruttenden, Alan, ed. Gimson's Pronunciation of English. London: Edward Arnold, 1998.

Ladefoged, Peter. A Course in Phonetics. Fort Worth: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich College Publishers, 1993.


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