Open front rounded vowel
IPA Number312
Audio sample
Entity (decimal)ɶ
Unicode (hex)U+0276
Braille⠔ (braille pattern dots-35)⠪ (braille pattern dots-246)

The (near) open front rounded vowel, or (near) low front rounded vowel,[1] is a type of vowel sound that has not been confirmed to be phonemic in any spoken language.[citation needed] The symbol in the International Phonetic Alphabet that represents this sound is ⟨ɶ⟩, and the equivalent X-SAMPA symbol is &. The letter ⟨ɶ⟩ is a small caps rendition of Œ. ⟨œ⟩, the lowercase version of the ligature, is used for the open-mid front rounded vowel.

While the IPA chart lists it as a fully open vowel, the rounded equivalent of [a], Ladefoged[2] characterizes it as near-open, the rounded equivalent of [æ].

A phoneme generally transcribed by this symbol is reported from the Bavarian dialect of Amstetten. However, it is phonetically open-mid, [œ].[3]

It occurs allophonically in Weert Limburgish[4] as well as in some speakers of Danish[5] and Swedish.[6] Certain transcriptions of Danish use ⟨ɶ⟩ to denote an open-mid front rounded vowel [œ].[5]

In Maastrichtian Limburgish, the vowel transcribed with ⟨ɶː⟩ in the Mestreechter Taol dictionary is phonetically near-open central [ɐ̹ː]. It is a phonological open-mid front rounded vowel, the long counterpart of /œ/.[7]

Riad (2014) reports that [ɶː] in Stockholm Swedish is sometimes difficult to distinguish from [ɒː], which is the main realization of the /ɑː/ phoneme, a sign that both vowels are phonetically very close.[6]



Language Word IPA Meaning Notes
Danish Some speakers[5] grøn [ˈkʁɶ̝nˀ] 'green' Near-open;[8] allophone of /ø/ between /ʁ/ and /v/ as well as an allophone of /œ/ between /ʁ/ and a nasal.[9] Other speakers pronounce it the same as [œ].[5] See Danish phonology
Limburgish Weert dialect[4] bui [bɶj] 'shower' Allophone of /œ/ before /j/.[4] See Weert dialect phonology
Swedish Stockholm[6] öra [ˈɶ̂ːra̠] 'ear' Pre-/r/ allophone of /øː/ (sometimes also /œ/) for younger speakers.[6] Open-mid [œː, œ] for other speakers.[6] See Swedish phonology

See also


  1. ^ While the International Phonetic Association prefers the terms "close" and "open" for vowel height, many linguists use "high" and "low".
  2. ^ Ladefoged, Peter; Maddieson, Ian (1996). The Sounds of the World's Languages. Oxford: Blackwell. p. 290. ISBN 0-631-19815-6.
  3. ^ Traunmüller (1982), cited in Ladefoged & Maddieson (1996:290)
  4. ^ a b c Heijmans & Gussenhoven (1998:110)
  5. ^ a b c d Basbøll (2005:46)
  6. ^ a b c d e Riad (2014:38)
  7. ^ Gussenhoven & Aarts (1999:159, 161–162, 164)
  8. ^ Grønnum (1998:100)
  9. ^ Grønnum (2005:288)