Questions tagged [phonetics]

The study of the production and perception of sounds or "phones".

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18 votes
4 answers
41k views

Automated French/Italian/German to IPA transcription

I'm looking for a website or software that will take text written in a source language and produce a transcription in IPA. The languages I am interested in are French, Italian and German, but if you ...
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69 votes
10 answers
101k views

When should one use slashes or square brackets when transcribing in IPA?

When should one use /fubar/ and when [fubar] when transcribing in IPA? What are the differences?
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5 votes
3 answers
672 views

Are there counterparts to phones and phonetics for signed languages?

Given that there is a difference between phonetics and phonology, and that in the study of signed languages cherology is the counterpart to phonology, are there also counterparts to phones and ...
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7 votes
2 answers
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How are syllabic consonants written in IPA?

Suppose that, in some hypothetical language, there were two different words: /tump/ /tump/ What's the difference?, you might ask. In the first one, the word is one syllable long. In the second one, ...
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44 votes
15 answers
483k views

What's the difference between phonetics and phonology?

Having practiced armchair linguistics for some years I should be able to sum up the difference off the top of my head, yet often I don't know which term to use. And looking them up on Wikipedia doesn'...
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13 votes
2 answers
4k views

Is there a difference between /ɕ/ and /sʲ/?

Are /ɕ/ and /ʑ/ simply shorthand for /sʲ/ and /zʲ/ as with many of the possible diacritic combinations in IPA or are they different sounds? If they are the same, is there any good reason to use one ...
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44 votes
6 answers
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How do linguists place the vowels of a language precisely on the vowel trapezoid?

Since vowels in human speech are a continuous spectrum rather than a discrete set, many descriptions of languages I’ve seen — not only on Wikipedia — place the vowels of a language as dots in a two-...
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9 votes
1 answer
716 views

How the tau gallicum may have been pronounced?

The so-called tau gallicum was a character used in Gaulish, written Đ, ð or even a Θ. Its name comes from the only commentary on it that we have, by Vergil (Appendix Vergiliana, Catalepton II, 4). ...
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7 votes
2 answers
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Can the /m/ sound in a 1st person pronoun be considered a linguistic universal?

For example, english: me, mine, my Russian: мне, меня, мой Estonian: mina, mind, mulle How prevalent is this in world's languages and what should it be attributed to?
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13 votes
7 answers
41k views

What is the difference between voiced and voiceless stop consonants?

As a native speaker of American English, when I was listening to the difference sounds in this IPA chart, I was really surprised when I realized that I could not differentiate between p/b, t/d, and k/...
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19 votes
3 answers
4k views

Why does stop VOT duration vary depending on place of articulation?

From the (albeit citation needed) section of the Wikipedia article on aspiration: Spanish /p t k/, for example, have voice onset times (VOTs) of about 5, 10, and 30 milliseconds, whereas English /p ...
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