Voiced alveolo-palatal fricative
IPA Number183
Audio sample
Entity (decimal)ʑ
Unicode (hex)U+0291
Braille⠦ (braille pattern dots-236)⠵ (braille pattern dots-1356)

The voiced alveolo-palatal sibilant fricative is a type of consonantal sound, used in some spoken languages. The symbol in the International Phonetic Alphabet that represents this sound is ʑ ("z", plus the curl also found in its voiceless counterpart ⟨ɕ⟩), and the equivalent X-SAMPA symbol is z\. It is the sibilant equivalent of the voiced palatal fricative, and as such it can be transcribed in IPA with ʝ˖.


alveolo-palatal sibilant fricatives [ɕ, ʑ]

Features of the voiced alveolo-palatal fricative:


Language Word IPA Meaning Notes
Abkhaz ажьа [aˈʑa] 'hare' See Abkhaz phonology
Adyghe жьау [ʑaːw] 'shadow'
Catalan Eastern[1] ajut [ɐˈʑut̪] 'help' (n.) See Catalan phonology
All dialects caixmir [kä(ɪ̯)ʑˈmiɾ] 'Cashmere'
Chinese Jiangshan [ʑyœʔ] 'ten'
Taiwanese Hokkien 今仔日/kin-á-ji̍t [kɪn˧a˥ʑɪt˥] 'today'
Czech život [ʑɪvot] 'life' See Czech phonology
English Ghana[2] vision [ˈviʑin] 'vision' Educated speakers may use [ʒ], which this phoneme corresponds to in other dialects.[2]
Japanese 火事/kaji [kaʑi] 'fire' Found in free variation with [d͡ʑ] between vowels. See Japanese phonology
Kabardian жьэ [ʑa] 'mouth'
Lower Sorbian[3] źasety [ʑäs̪ɛt̪ɨ][stress?] 'tenth'
Luxembourgish[4] héijen [ˈhɜ̝ɪ̯ʑən] 'high' Allophone of /ʁ/ after phonologically front vowels; some speakers merge it with [ʒ]. Occurs in only a few words.[4] See Luxembourgish phonology
Pa Na [ʑu˧˥] 'small'
Polish[5] źrebię [ˈʑrɛbjɛ] 'foal' Also denoted by the digraph ⟨zi⟩. See Polish phonology
Portuguese[6][7][8] magia [maˈʑi.ɐ] 'magic' Also described as palato-alveolar [ʒ].[9][10] See Portuguese phonology
Romani Kalderash[11] ʒal [ʑal] 'he/she/it goes' Realized as [d͡ʒ] in conservative dialects.
Romanian Transylvanian dialects[12] gea [ˈʑanə] 'eyelash' Realized as [d͡ʒ] in standard Romanian. See Romanian phonology
Russian Conservative Moscow Standard[13] позже [poʑːe] 'later' Somewhat obsolete in many words, in which most speakers realize it as hard [ʐː].[13] Present only in a few words, usually written ⟨жж⟩ or ⟨зж⟩. See Russian phonology
Sema[14] aji [à̠ʑì] 'blood' Possible allophone of /ʒ/ before /i, e/; can be realized as [d͡ʑ ~ ʒ ~ d͡ʒ] instead.[14]
Serbo-Croatian Croatian[15] puž će [pûːʑ t͡ɕe̞] 'the snail will' Allophone of /ʒ/ before /t͡ɕ, d͡ʑ/.[15] See Serbo-Croatian phonology
Some speakers of Montenegrin źenica [ʑȇ̞nit̻͡s̪a̠] 'pupil' Phonemically /zj/ or, in some cases, /z/.
Spanish Paraguayan[16] carro [ˈkaʑo] 'car' Dialectal realization of /r/ and allophone of /ɾ/ after /t/.
Uzbek[17] [example needed]
Xumi Upper[18] [ʑɐ̝˦] 'beer, wine'
Yi /yi [ʑi˧] 'tobacco'

See also


  1. ^ Recasens & Espinosa (2007:145, 167)
  2. ^ a b Huber (2004:859)
  3. ^ Zygis (2003:180–181)
  4. ^ a b Gilles & Trouvain (2013), pp. 67–68.
  5. ^ Jassem (2003:103)
  6. ^ Mateus & d'Andrade (2000)
  7. ^ Silva (2003:32)
  8. ^ Guimarães (2004)
  9. ^ Cruz-Ferreira (1995:91)
  10. ^ Medina (2010)
  11. ^ Boretzky & Igla (1994:XVII)
  12. ^ Pop (1938), p. 30.
  13. ^ a b Yanushevskaya & Bunčić (2015:224)
  14. ^ a b Teo (2014:23)
  15. ^ a b Landau et al. (1999:68)
  16. ^ "Catálogo de voces hispánicas: Paraguay, Asunción". Instituto Cervantes (in Spanish). Retrieved 18 January 2020.
  17. ^ Sjoberg (1963:11)
  18. ^ Chirkova, Chen & Kocjančič Antolík (2013:383)