Mid back unrounded vowel

Mid back unrounded vowel
IPA number 315 430
Entity (decimal) ɤ̞
Unicode (hex) U+0264U+031E

The mid back unrounded vowel is a type of vowel sound, used in some spoken languages. Acoustically it is a mid back-central unrounded vowel.[1] Although there is no dedicated symbol in the International Phonetic Alphabet that represents the exact mid back unrounded vowel between close-mid [ɤ] and open-mid [ʌ] because no language is known to distinguish all three, ɤ is normally used. If more precision is desired, diacritics can be used, such as ɤ̞ or ʌ̝.


IPA: Vowels
Front Central Back

Paired vowels are: unrounded  rounded

  • Its vowel backness is back, which means the tongue is positioned as far back as possible in the mouth without creating a constriction that would be classified as a consonant. Unrounded back vowels tend to be centralized, which means that often they are in fact near-back.
  • It is unrounded, which means that the lips are not rounded.


Bulgarian[2]път[pɤ̞̈t̪]'path'Near-back.[2] See Bulgarian phonology
ChineseShanghainese[3][kɤ̞̈¹]'ditch'Near-back; tends to be diphthongized to [ɤ̞̈ɯ̞̈] by younger speakers.[3]
DanishStandard[4]læger[ˈleːɤ̞̈]'doctors'Near-back; one of possible realizations of the sequences /ər, rə, rər/.[4] See Danish phonology
EnglishCardiff[5]plus[pl̥ʌ̝̈s]'plus'Near-back, may be [ə], [ɜ], [ɜ̟] or [ë̞] instead.[5] It corresponds to [ʌ] in other dialects.
Norfolk[6]Near-back;[6] corresponds to [ʌ] in other dialects. See English phonology
Philadelphia[7][pɫ̥ʌ̝s]May be either open-mid [ʌ] or a lowered and unrounded /uː/ ([ɯ̽]) instead.[7] It corresponds to [ʌ] in other dialects. See English phonology
Gayo[8]kule[kuˈlɤ̞ː]'tiger'One of the possible allophones of /ə/.[8]
GermanChemnitz dialect[9]Schirm[ʃʌ̝̈ˤːm]'umbrella'Pharyngealized near-back; may be transcribed in IPA with ʌˤː. It may be realized as [ɪːɒ̯] instead.[9]
Ibibio[10][dʌ̝̈k˦]'enter'Near-back; typically transcribed in IPA with ʌ.[10]
VietnameseHanoi[11]t[t̻ɤ̞̈˧˨]'sheet'Near-back.[11] Realization of /ɤ/ (also transcribed in IPA with ə) according to Kirby (2011). See Vietnamese phonology

See also



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