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Voiced bilabial trill
IPA Number121
Entity (decimal)ʙ
Unicode (hex)U+0299
Audio sample

The voiced bilabial trill is a type of consonantal sound, used in some spoken languages. The symbol in the International Phonetic Alphabet that represents the sound is ⟨ʙ⟩, and the equivalent X-SAMPA symbol is B\.


Features of the voiced bilabial trill:


Language Affiliation Word IPA Meaning Notes
Pirahã Mura kaoáíbogi [kàò̯áí̯ʙòˈɡì] 'evil spirit' Allophone of /b/ before /o/
Medumba Bantoid mʙʉ [mʙʉ́] 'dog'
Ngwe Lebang dialect Bantoid [àʙɨ́ ́] 'ash'
Komi-Permyak[1] Uralic Бунгаг [ʙuŋgag] 'dung beetle' Generally paralinguistic. This is the only true word it is found in.
Lizu[2][3] Qiangic TU, [tʙ̩˥˩] 'bean' Syllabic; allophone of /u/ after initial /pʰ, p, b, tʰ, t, d/.[2]
Pumi[3] Qiangic biiv [pʙ̩˥] 'to dig' Syllabic; allophone of /ə/ after /pʰ, p, b, tʰ, t, d/.
Sangtam Naga [t͡ʙʰʌ ̀][4] 'plate' Phonemic, as /t͡ʙ/, found in /t͡ʙaŋ/ 'needle'[4]
Nias Austronesian simbi [siʙi] 'lower jaw'
Kele[5][6] Oceanic [ᵐʙulim] 'face' And other languages of the Admiralty Islands
Titan[5][6] Oceanic [ᵐʙutukei] 'wooden plate'
Unua[7] Oceanic [ᵐʙue] 'pig'
Kilmeri language[8]
Several languages of Malekula in Vanuatu.[9]

The Knorkator song "[Buchstabe]" (the actual title is a glyph) on the 1999 album Hasenchartbreaker uses a similar sound to replace "br" in a number of German words (e.g. [ˈʙaːtkaɐ̯tɔfəln] for Bratkartoffeln).


In many of the languages in which the bilabial trill occurs, it occurs only as part of a prenasalized bilabial stop with trilled release, [mbʙ]. That developed historically from a prenasalized stop before a relatively high back vowel like [mbu]. In such instances, the sounds are usually still limited to the environment of a following [u]. However, the trills in Mangbetu may precede any vowel and are sometimes preceded by only a nasal.

See also


  1. ^ Wichmann, Yrjö; Uotila, T. E. (1942). Syrjänischer Wortschatz nebst Hauptzügen der Formenlehre. Helsinki: Suomalais-Ugrilainen Seura.
  2. ^ a b Chirkova & Chen (2013:78)
  3. ^ a b Chirkova, Katia (2012). "The Qiangic Subgroup from an Areal Perspective: A Case Study of Languages of Muli" (Archive). In Languages and Linguistics 13(1):133-170. Taipei: Academia Sinica.
  4. ^ a b Coupe, Alexander (2016), "Prestopped bilabial trills in Sangtam", Proceedings of the 18th International Congress of Phonetic Sciences, Glasgow, 10-14 August 2015.
  5. ^ a b Ladefoged (2005:165)
  6. ^ a b Bowern, Claire (2012). Sivisa Titan. University of Hawai'i Press.
  7. ^ Dimock (2005:19)
  8. ^ a b c Foley, William A. (2018). "The Languages of the Sepik-Ramu Basin and Environs". In Palmer, Bill (ed.). The Languages and Linguistics of the New Guinea Area: A Comprehensive Guide. The World of Linguistics. 4. Berlin: De Gruyter Mouton. pp. 197–432. ISBN 978-3-11-028642-7.
  9. ^ Rangelov, Tihomir (2019). The bilabial trills of Ahamb (Vanuatu): acoustic and articulatory properties.