Uvularization is a secondary articulation of consonants or vowels by which the back of the tongue is constricted toward the uvula and upper pharynx during the articulation of a sound with its primary articulation elsewhere.
In the International Phonetic Alphabet, uvularization can be indicated by one of two methods:
- A tilde or swung dash through the letter indicates velarization, uvularization or pharyngealization, as in [ɫ] ("dark l"). However, apart from a few pre-composed characters, this diacritic is deprecated by Unicode.
- The symbol ⟨ʶ⟩ (a superscript voiced uvular approximant (inverted small capital R)) after the letter standing for the consonant that is uvularized, as in [tʶ] (the uvularized equivalent of [t])
Uvularized consonants are often not distinguished from pharyngealized consonants, and they may be transcribed as if they were pharyngealized.
Uvularized consonants in standard Arabic are /sʶ/, /dʶ/, /tʶ/, /ðʶ/, /lʶ/. Regionally there is also /zʶ/ and /rʶ/. Other consonants, and vowels, may be phonetically uvularized.
- Deprecated as a diacritic in Unicode
- McCarthy, John (1994) "The phonetics and phonology of Semitic pharyngeals. In Keating (ed.) Phonological structure and phonetic form: papers in laboratory phonology III, 191–233. Cambridge University Press.
- Shahin, Kimary (1996) "Accessing pharyngeal place in Palestinian Arabic", in Eid & Parkinson (eds.) Perspectives on Arabic Linguistics: Papers from the Ninth Annual Symposium on Arabic Linguistics, Washington DC, 1995, 131–149
- Sydney Wood (1997) "The gestural organization of vowels and consonants: a cinefluorographic study of articulator gestures in Greenlandic", 5th European Conference on Speech Communication and Technology