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Voiceless alveolo-palatal fricative

Voiceless alveolo-palatal fricative
IPA Number182
Entity (decimal)ɕ
Unicode (hex)U+0255
Braille⠦ (braille pattern dots-236)⠉ (braille pattern dots-14)
Audio sample

The voiceless alveolo-palatal sibilant fricative is a type of consonantal sound, used in some oral languages. The symbol in the International Phonetic Alphabet that represents this sound is ⟨ɕ⟩ ("c", plus the curl also found in its voiced counterpart ⟨ʑ⟩). It is the sibilant equivalent of the voiceless palatal fricative.

The voiceless alveolo-palatal sibilant fricative does not occur in any major dialect of English. However, it is the usual realization of /ʃ/ (as in ship) in the Ghanaian variety.[1]


alveolo-palatal sibilant fricatives [ɕ, ʑ]

Features of the voiceless alveolo-palatal fricative:


Language Word IPA Meaning Notes
Adyghe щы About this sound[ɕə]  'three'
Assamese ব্ৰিটি [bɹitiɕ] 'British'
Catalan Eastern[2] caixa [ˈkäɕə] 'box' See Catalan phonology
Majorcan[2] [ˈkaɕə]
Chinese Some Hokkien dialects sim [ɕím] 'heart' Allophone of /s/ before /i/.
Mandarin 西安 / Xī'ān About this sound[ɕí.án]  'Xi'an' Contrasts with /ʂ/ and /s/. See Mandarin phonology
Chuvash çиçĕм [ˈɕiɕ̬əm] 'lightning' Contrasts with /ʂ/ and /s/.
Danish sjæl [ˈɕeːˀl] 'soul' See Danish phonology
Dutch Some speakers sjabloon [ɕäˈbloːn] 'template' May be [ʃ] or [sʲ] instead. See Dutch phonology
English Ghanaian[1] ship [ɕip] 'ship' Educated speakers may use [ʃ], to which this phone corresponds in other dialects.[1]
Guarani Paraguayan che [ɕɛ] 'I'
Japanese[3] / shio [ɕi.o] 'salt' See Japanese phonology
Kabardian щэ About this sound[ɕa]  'hundred'
Korean / si [ɕi] 'poem' See Korean phonology
Lower Sorbian[4] pśijaśel [ˈpɕijäɕɛl] 'friend'
Luxembourgish[5] liicht [liːɕt] 'light' Allophone of /χ/ after phonologically front vowels; some speakers merge it with [ʃ].[5] See Luxembourgish phonology
Norwegian Urban East[6] kjekk [ɕe̞kː] 'handsome' Typically transcribed in IPA with ⟨ç⟩; less often realized as palatal [ç]. Younger speakers in Bergen, Stavanger and Oslo merge it with /ʂ/.[6] See Norwegian phonology
Pashto Wazirwola dialect لښکي [ˈləɕki] 'little, slight'
Polish[7] śruba About this sound[ˈɕrubä]  'screw' Contrasts with /ʂ/ and /s/. See Polish phonology
Portuguese[8][9][10] mexendo [meˈɕẽd̪u] 'moving' Also described as palato-alveolar [ʃ].[11][12] See Portuguese phonology
Romanian Transylvanian dialects[13] ce [ɕɛ] 'what' Realized as [] in standard Romanian. See Romanian phonology
Russian счастье About this sound[ˈɕːæsʲtʲjə]  'happiness' Also represented by ⟨щ⟩. Contrasts with /ʂ/, /s/, and /sʲ/. See Russian phonology
Sema[14] ashi [à̠ɕì] 'meat' Possible allophone of /ʃ/ before /i, e/.[14]
Serbo-Croatian Croatian[15] miš će [mîɕ t͡ɕe̞] 'the mouse will' Allophone of /ʃ/ before /t͡ɕ, d͡ʑ/.[15] See Serbo-Croatian phonology
Some speakers of Montenegrin с́утра / śutra [ɕȗt̪ra̠] 'tomorrow' Phonemically /sj/ or, in some cases, /s/.
Swedish Finland sjok [ɕuːk] 'chunk' Allophone of /ɧ/.
Sweden kjol About this sound[ɕuːl]  'skirt' See Swedish phonology
Tibetan Lhasa dialect བཞི་ [ɕi˨˧] 'four' Contrasts with /ʂ/.
Tatar өчпочмак [ˌœɕpɔɕˈmɑq] 'triangle'
Uzbek[16] [example needed]
Xumi Lower[17] [RPd͡ʑi ɕɐ][clarification needed] 'one hundred'
Upper[18] [RPd͡ʑi ɕɜ][clarification needed]
Yi /xi [ɕi˧] 'thread'
Zhuang cib [ɕǐp] 'ten'

See also



  • Chirkova, Katia; Chen, Yiya (2013), "Xumi, Part 1: Lower Xumi, the Variety of the Lower and Middle Reaches of the Shuiluo River" (PDF), Journal of the International Phonetic Association, 43 (3): 363–379, doi:10.1017/S0025100313000157[permanent dead link]
  • Chirkova, Katia; Chen, Yiya; Kocjančič Antolík, Tanja (2013), "Xumi, Part 2: Upper Xumi, the Variety of the Upper Reaches of the Shuiluo River" (PDF), Journal of the International Phonetic Association, 43 (3): 381–396, doi:10.1017/S0025100313000169[permanent dead link]
  • Cruz-Ferreira, Madalena (1995), "European Portuguese", Journal of the International Phonetic Association, 25 (2): 90–94, doi:10.1017/S0025100300005223
  • Gilles, Peter; Trouvain, Jürgen (2013), "Luxembourgish" (PDF), Journal of the International Phonetic Association, 43 (1): 67–74, doi:10.1017/S0025100312000278
  • Guimarães, Daniela (2004), Seqüências de (Sibilante + Africada Alveopalatal) no Português Falado em Belo Horizonte (PDF), Belo Horizonte: Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais, archived from the original (PDF) on 2014-04-07, retrieved 2015-08-21
  • Huber, Magnus (2004), "Ghanaian English: phonology", in Schneider, Edgar W.; Burridge, Kate; Kortmann, Bernd; Mesthrie, Rajend; Upton, Clive (eds.), A handbook of varieties of English, 1: Phonology, Mouton de Gruyter, pp. 842–865, ISBN 3-11-017532-0
  • Jassem, Wiktor (2003), "Polish", Journal of the International Phonetic Association, 33 (1): 103–107, doi:10.1017/S0025100303001191
  • Kristoffersen, Gjert (2000), The Phonology of Norwegian, Oxford University Press, ISBN 978-0-19-823765-5
  • Landau, Ernestina; Lončarić, Mijo; Horga, Damir; Škarić, Ivo (1999), "Croatian", Handbook of the International Phonetic Association: A guide to the use of the International Phonetic Alphabet, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, pp. 66–69, ISBN 0-521-65236-7
  • Mateus, Maria Helena; d'Andrade, Ernesto (2000), The Phonology of Portuguese, Oxford University Press, ISBN 0-19-823581-X
  • Medina, Flávio (2010), Análise Acústica de Sequências de Fricativas Seguidas de [i] Produzidas por Japoneses Aprendizes de Português Brasileiro (PDF), Anais do IX Encontro do CELSUL Palhoça, SC, Palhoça: Universidade do Sul de Santa Catarina, archived from the original (PDF) on 2015-09-23, retrieved 2014-12-06
  • Okada, Hideo (1999), "Japanese", in International Phonetic Association (ed.), Handbook of the International Phonetic Association: A Guide to the Use of the International Phonetic Alphabet, Cambridge University Press, pp. 117–119, ISBN 978-0-52163751-0
  • Pop, Sever (1938), Micul Atlas Linguistic Român, Muzeul Limbii Române Cluj
  • Recasens, Daniel; Espinosa, Aina (2007), "An electropalatographic and acoustic study of affricates and fricatives in two Catalan dialects" (PDF), Journal of the International Phonetic Association, 37 (2): 143–172, doi:10.1017/S0025100306002829
  • Silva, Thaïs Cristófaro (2003), Fonética e Fonologia do Português: Roteiro de Estudos e Guia de Exercícios (7th ed.), São Paulo: Contexto, ISBN 85-7244-102-6
  • Sjoberg, Andrée F. (1963), Uzbek Structural Grammar, Uralic and Altaic Series, 18, Bloomington: Indiana University
  • Teo, Amos B. (2012), "Sumi (Sema)", Journal of the International Phonetic Association, 42 (03): 365–373, doi:10.1017/S0025100312000254
  • Zygis, Marzena (2003), "Phonetic and Phonological Aspects of Slavic Sibilant Fricatives" (PDF), ZAS Papers in Linguistics, 3: 175–213

External links