Labial consonant

Labial consonant

Labials are consonants articulated either with both lips (bilabial articulation) or with the lower lip and the upper teeth (labiodental articulation). English IPA| [m] is a bilabial nasal sonorant, IPA| [b] and IPA| [p] are bilabial stops "(plosives)", IPA| [v] and IPA| [f] are labiodental fricatives.

"Bilabial fricatives" and the "bilabial approximant" do not exist in standard English, but do occur in many languages. For example, the Spanish consonant spelt "b" or "v" is pronounced as a voiced "bilabial approximant" between vowels.

Lip rounding, or labialisation can also accompany other articulations. English IPA|/w/ is a labialised velar approximant.

Labial consonants are divided into two subplaces of articulation:

* bilabial consonants
* labiodental consonants

Very few languages, however, make a distinction on purely this basis. One example is Ewe, with both kinds of fricatives. For by far the most other languages in the world, "labial" by itself is a sufficient phonemic specification. Whether the sounds will actually be bilabial or labiodental depends on the language, but the most common pattern is that exhibited in English: bilabial stops and nasals, labiodental fricatives.

ee also

*List of phonetics topics



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  • labial consonant — noun a consonant whose articulation involves movement of the lips • Syn: ↑labial • Derivationally related forms: ↑labial (for: ↑labial) • Hypernyms: ↑consonant …   Useful english dictionary

  • Labial — may refer to: *the lips. *the labia (genitalia). *In linguistics, a labial consonant. *In zoology, a labial scale. *A flue (instrument) …   Wikipedia

  • labial stop — noun a stop consonant that is produced with the lips • Hypernyms: ↑stop consonant, ↑stop, ↑occlusive, ↑plosive consonant, ↑plosive speech sound, ↑plosive, ↑labial consonant, ↑labial * * * …   Useful english dictionary

  • labial — I. adjective Etymology: Medieval Latin labialis, from Latin labium lip Date: 1594 1. uttered with the participation of one or both lips < the labial sounds f, p, and ü > 2. of, relating to, or situated near the lips or labia • labially adverb II …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • labial — labiality, n. labially, adv. /lay bee euhl/, adj. 1. of, pertaining to, or resembling a labium. 2. of or pertaining to the lips. 3. Phonet. involving lip articulation, as p, v, m, w, or a rounded vowel. 4. Music. having the tones produced by the… …   Universalium

  • labial — 1. adjective a) Of or pertaining to the lips or labia b) articulated by the lips, as the consonants b, m and w 2. noun a) a labial consonant b) an …   Wiktionary

  • labial — /ˈleɪbiəl/ (say laybeeuhl) adjective 1. relating to or of the nature of a labium. 2. Music giving forth sounds produced by the impact of a stream of air upon the sharp edge of a lip, as a flute or pipe organ. 3. of or relating to lips. 4.… …   Australian-English dictionary

  • Labial-velar consonant — Labial velar consonants are doubly articulated at the velum and the lips. They are sometimes called labiovelar consonants , a term which can also refer to labialized velars, such as the approximant IPA| [w] . Truly doubly articulated labial… …   Wikipedia

  • Labial — La bi*al, a. [LL. labialis, fr. L. labium lip: cf. F. labial. See {Lip}.] 1. Of or pertaining to the lips or labia; as, labial veins. [1913 Webster] 2. (Mus.) Furnished with lips; as, a labial organ pipe. [1913 Webster] 3. (Phonetics) (a)… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Consonant — Not to be confused with the musical concept of consonance For the alternative rock group, see Consonant (band). Places of articulation Labial Bilabial Labial–velar Labial–coronal Labiodental …   Wikipedia

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