Ğ (g with breve) is a Latin letter found in the Turkish and Azerbaijani alphabets as well as the Latin alphabets of Laz, Crimean Tatar and Tatar. It traditionally represented the voiced velar fricative /ɣ/ or (in case of Tatar) the similar voiced uvular fricative /ʁ/ in all those languages. However, in Turkish, the phoneme has in most cases been reduced to a silent letter, serving as a vowel-lengthener.
|G with breve|
|ǧ, ĝ, ḡ, ġ, ǥ, ǵ, g̃, ģ, ɠ|
|Writing system||Latin script|
|Language of origin||Turkish language|
|Time period||1928 to present|
|Descendants|| • Ǧ|
|Transliteration equivalents||غ, Gh (digraph), Ғ|
|Variations||ǧ, ĝ, ḡ, ġ, ǥ, ǵ, g̃, ģ, ɠ|
|Other letters commonly used with||gh, ǧ, ĝ, ḡ, ġ, ǥ, ǵ, g̃, ģ, ɠ|
In Turkish, the ⟨ğ⟩ (sometimes represented with ⟨ɰ⟩ for convenience) is known as yumuşak ge ([jumuʃak ɟe]; 'soft g') and is the ninth letter of the Turkish alphabet. It always follows a vowel, and can be compared to the blødt g ('soft g') in Danish. The letter serves as a transition between two vowels, since they do not occur consecutively in native Turkish words (in loanwords they are separated by a glottal stop, e.g. cemaat or cemaât, meaning 'community', from Arabic).
It generally has no sound of its own, with its effect varying depending on its location in a word and the surrounding vowels:
- in word-final and syllable-final positions it lengthens the preceding vowel, for example: dağ(lar) ("mountain(s)") [daː(laɾ)], sığ ("shallow") [sɯː]; when following a front vowel (e, i), it may sound /j/ instead: değnek ("cane") [dejnec];
- between identical back vowels (a, ı, u) it is silent: sığınak ("shelter") [sɯːnak], uğur ("good luck") [uːɾ];
- between identical front vowels (e, i, ü) it is either silent: sevdiğim ("that I love") [sevdiːm], or pronounced [j]: düğün ("wedding") [dyjyn];
- between different rounded vowels (o, u, ö, ü), or between rounded (o, u, ö, ü) and unrounded (a, e) vowels it is mostly silent, but may be a bilabial glide: soğuk ("cold") [so.uk] or [sowuk], soğan ("onion") [so.an] or [sowan];
- ağı may sound as two vowels or as long a: ağır ("heavy") [a.ɯɾ] or [aːɾ];
- ığa is always two vowels: sığan ("which fits") [sɯ.an];
- in eği and iğe it is either silent or pronounced [j] as if written y: değil ("not") [dejil], diğer ("other") [dijeɾ]; in colloquial speech eği is long i: değil ("not") [diːl];
- eği and ağı in the future suffix -(y)AcAK- are formally [e.i]/[a.ɯ] or colloquially [æ]/[a]: seveceğim ("I will love") [seveˈdʒe.im] or [seviˈdʒæm]; yazacağım ("I will write") [jazaˈdʒa.ɯm] or [jazɯˈdʒam].
The letter, and its counterpart in the Ottoman Turkish alphabet, ⟨غ⟩, were once pronounced as a consonant, /ɣ/, the voiced velar fricative, until very recently in the history of Turkish, but it has undergone a sound change by which the consonant was completely lost and compensatory lengthening of the preceding vowel occurred, hence its function today. The sound change is not yet complete in some Turkish dialects. The previous consonantal nature of the sound is evinced by earlier English loanwords from Turkish, such as yogurt/yoghurt (modern Turkish yoğurt) and agha (modern Turkish ağa), and the corresponding velar fricative found in cognate words in the closely related Azerbaijani language and the Turkish-influenced Crimean Tatar language. In Old Turkic (as well as earlier during Proto-Turkic times), this voiced velar fricative originated as an allophone of [ɡ], the voiced velar stop, when it occurred intervocalically. The expected process of lenition (weakening and eventual loss of the intervocalic Proto-Turkic consonant *ɡ) is thus complete in Turkish and underway in many other Common Turkic languages.
Azerbaijani and Crimean Tatar useEdit
Laz is written using two alphabets: the Georgian script and an extended Turkish Latin alphabet. In the Latin alphabet, ⟨ğ⟩ represents /ɣ/, the voiced velar fricative, and corresponds to the Georgian letter ghani.
|Unicode name||LATIN CAPITAL LETTER G WITH BREVE||LATIN SMALL LETTER G WITH BREVE|
|UTF-8||196 158||C4 9E||196 159||C4 9F|
|Numeric character reference||Ğ||Ğ||ğ||ğ|
- Göksel, Aslı; Kerslake, Celia (2005). Turkish: A Comprehensive Grammar. Routledge. pp. 7–8.