What is the name of the thing that the tongue does on the syllable pri in Classical Latin, Spanish, Italian, Brazilian Portuguese, and possibility other Romance languages? Since Classical Latin has this pronunciation and since Classical Latin evolved into Vulgar Latin and since Vulgar Latin evolved into the Romance Languages, here's a Classical Latin example, on the word primus on the first line of The Aeneid by Virgil, starting at the 4:28 mark of this video! https://youtu.be/K9eN2B7Wj68?t=261

  • 1
    Your video actually says it is an alveolar trill?
    – Cerberus
    Commented Jun 26, 2022 at 19:46
  • No, on the syllable pri on the word primus!
    – Ana Maria
    Commented Jun 26, 2022 at 19:50
  • 1
    That is the same sound the video is about, isn't it?
    – Cerberus
    Commented Jun 26, 2022 at 19:57
  • 4
    This is exactly the same as your last question, and the answer remains the same as well. If you don’t think trill fits what you’re looking for, then explain what you’re looking for. Just adding more languages to the list and saying “the thing the tongue does in the syllable pri” doesn’t cut it, because the only phonetically relevant thing the tongue does in that syllable is (1) make an alveolar tap or trill as already explained, and (2) move towards the hard palate to produce the vowel /i/. Nothing else. Commented Jun 26, 2022 at 20:25
  • @JanusBahsJacquet I wouldn't strictly speaking call this a duplicate. The other one is asking about trills in general, this one is asking about an alveolar trill specifically. Regardless, I agree—Ana Maria, if "alveolar trill" isn't the answer you're looking for, we'll need more explanation of what exactly you mean. We're happy to help, but we need to know what you're asking in order to do so.
    – Draconis
    Commented Jun 26, 2022 at 21:02

1 Answer 1


It's an alveolar trill, as explained in the video. The specific one used in prīmus at the end is a shorter one than in arma, with only a couple of flaps, but it's still considered an alveolar trill.

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