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Voiceless velar implosive
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A voiceless velar implosive is a very rare consonantal sound. The symbol for this sound in the International Phonetic Alphabet is ɠ̊ or kʼ↓. A dedicated IPA letter, ƙ, was withdrawn in 1993.


Features of the voiceless velar implosive:


A phonemic /ɠ̊/ has not been confirmed for any language. It has been claimed for Lendu, but it is more likely to be creaky-voiced /ɠ̰/, as in Hausa. Some English speakers use a voiceless velar implosive [ɠ̊] to imitate the "glug-glug" sound of liquid being poured from a bottle, though others use a voiced implosive [ɠ] or an uvular one [ʛ].[1][full citation needed]

In Uspantek, and perhaps other Mayan languages of Guatemala, [ɠ̊] is a rare allophone of /kˀ/. Of the consonants with glottalic airstream, the labial and uvular vary as [ɓ̥] ~ [pʼ] and [ʛ̥] ~ [qʼ], depending on the position in the word. In contrast, the velar is nearly always [kʼ], but speakers have been recorded using [ɠ̊].[2]

Language Word IPA Meaning Notes
Uspantek[2] k'aam [ɠ̊aːm] 'cord/twine' Rare allophone of /kˀ/.

See also


  1. ^ Pike, Phonetics, 1943:40
  2. ^ a b Bennett, Ryan; Harvey, Meg; Henderson, Robert; Méndez López, Tomás Alberto (September 2022). "The phonetics and phonology of Uspanteko (Mayan)". Language and Linguistics Compass. 16 (9). doi:10.1111/lnc3.12467. ISSN 1749-818X. S2CID 252453913.

Further reading