In 2005, the IPA phonetical alphabet got extended by including the labiodental flap.

The wikipedia-page shows a good overview.

However, I am wondering if the labiodental flap is restricted to be only an initial phoneme?

Anyone got any example of words using the labiodental flap?

1 Answer 1


No, not only word-initial though it does seem that it's almost always syllable-initial.

There are many examples, assembled at 'a cross linguistic lexicon of the labial flap' by Olson and Hajek.

Most of the O&H examples show it occurring in word-initial or intervocalic position, but there is at least one example of it in a consonant cluster (tho heterosyllabic), from Karang (Niger-Congo, Cameroon):

/pekⱱekⱱek/ ‘very high’

There is also a single example in the O&H dataset of a word-final occurrence, from Dii (Niger-Congo, Cameroon):

/ɓáⱱ/ 'sound of a horse galloping'

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