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Velar lateral ejective affricate

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Velar lateral ejective affricate

The velar lateral ejective affricate is a rare type of consonantal sound, used in some spoken languages. The symbol in the International Phonetic Alphabet that represents this sound is ⟨kʟ̝̊ʼ⟩.

It is found in two forms in Archi, a Northeast Caucasian language of Dagestan, plain [k͡ʟ̝̊ʼ] and labialized [k͡ʟ̝̊ʷʼ]. It is further forward than velars in most languages, and might better be called prevelar. Archi also has voiceless (pulmonic) variants of its lateral affricates, several voiceless lateral fricatives, and a voiced lateral fricative at the same place of articulation, but no alveolar lateral fricatives or affricates.[1]

[kʟ̝̊ʼ] is also found as an allophone of /kx/ (ejective after a nasal) in Zulu and Xhosa, and of the velar ejective affricate /kxʼ/ in Hadza. In the latter, it contrasts with [cʎ̝̥], as in [cʼakʼa] 'to cradle'. In fact, the velar ejective is reported to be lateral, or to have a lateral allophone, in various languages of Africa which have clicks, including Taa, various varieties of !Kung, Gǁana (including Gǀui dialect), Khwe (ǁAni dialect), and Khoekhoe.[2]

Features

Features of the velar lateral ejective affricate:

  • Its manner of articulation is affricate, which means it is produced by first stopping the airflow entirely, then allowing air flow through a constricted channel at the place of articulation, causing turbulence.
  • Its place of articulation is velar, which means it is articulated with the back of the tongue at the soft palate.
  • Its phonation is voiceless, which means it is produced without vibrations of the vocal cords.
  • It is an oral consonant, which means air is allowed to escape through the mouth only.
  • It is a lateral consonant, which means it is produced by directing the airstream over the sides of the tongue, rather than down the middle.
  • The airstream mechanism is ejective (glottalic egressive), which means the air is forced out by pumping the glottis upward.

Occurrence

Language Word IPA Meaning Notes
Archi[3] кьан [kʟ̝̊ʼan] 'to love', 'to want' Archi contrasts between plain and labialized versions.
Sandawe tl’ungu [kʟ̝̊ʼùŋɡȕ] cloud, sky Allophone of /tɬʼ/ before /u, w/
Zulu umklomelo [umkʟ̝̊ʼɔˈmɛːlo] prize

References

Note that the source uses the symbol for the voiceless alveolar lateral fricative for the fricative part of this sound ([k͡ɬʼ]), but also indicates the sound to be prevelar.

See also

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