Close front unrounded vowel

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Template:Short description Template:Infobox IPA Template:IPA vowels

The close front unrounded vowel, or high front unrounded vowel,[1] is a type of vowel sound that occurs in most spoken languages, represented in the International Phonetic Alphabet by the symbol i. It is similar to the vowel sound in the English word meet—and often called long-e in American English.[2] Although in English this sound has additional length (usually being represented as Template:IPA) and is not normally pronounced as a pure vowel (it is a slight diphthong), some dialects have been reported to pronounce the phoneme as a pure sound.[3] A pure Template:IPA sound is also heard in many other languages, such as French, in words like chic.

The close front unrounded vowel is the vocalic equivalent of the palatal approximant Template:IPA. The two are almost identical featurally. They alternate with each other in certain languages, such as French, and in the diphthongs of some languages, Template:IPA with the non-syllabic diacritic and Template:IPA are used in different transcription systems to represent the same sound.

Languages that use the Latin script commonly use the letter Template:Angle bracket to represent this sound, though there are some exceptions: in English orthography that letter is usually associated with Template:IPA (as in bite) or Template:IPA (as in bit), and Template:IPA is more commonly represented by Template:Angle bracket, Template:Angle bracket, Template:Angle bracket, Template:Angle bracket or Template:Angle bracket, as in the words scene, bean, meet, niece, conceive; (see Great Vowel Shift). Irish orthography reflects both etymology and whether preceding consonants are broad or slender, so such combinations as Template:Angle bracket, Template:Angle bracket, and Template:Angle bracket all represent Template:IPA.


Template:Close vowel Template:Front vowel Template:Unrounded vowel


Language Word IPA Meaning Notes
AfrikaansTemplate:Sfnp dief Template:IPA 'thief' See Afrikaans phonology
Arabic StandardTemplate:Sfnp دين Template:IPA 'religion' See Arabic phonology
Chinese MandarinTemplate:SfnpTemplate:Sfnp / qī Template:Audio-IPA 'seven' See Standard Chinese phonology
CzechTemplate:SfnpTemplate:Sfnp bílý Template:Audio-IPA 'white' See Czech phonology
DutchTemplate:SfnpTemplate:Sfnp biet Template:Audio-IPA 'beet' See Dutch phonology
EnglishTemplate:Sfnp All dialects free Template:Audio-IPA 'free' Depending on dialect, can be pronounced as a diphthong. See English phonology
AustralianTemplate:Sfnp bit Template:IPA 'bit' Also described as near-close front Template:IPAblink.Template:Sfnp See Australian English phonology
FrenchTemplate:SfnpTemplate:Sfnp fini Template:IPA 'finished' See French phonology
GermanTemplate:SfnpTemplate:Sfnp Ziel Template:Audio-IPA 'goal' See Standard German phonology
Greek Modern StandardTemplate:SfnpTemplate:Sfnp κήπος / kípos Template:IPA 'garden' See Modern Greek phonology
HungarianTemplate:Sfnp ív Template:IPA 'arch' See Hungarian phonology
ItalianTemplate:Sfnp bile Template:IPA 'rage' See Italian phonology
JapaneseTemplate:Sfnp /gin Template:Audio-IPA 'silver' See Japanese phonology
KoreanTemplate:Sfnp 아이 / ai Template:IPA 'child' See Korean phonology
KurdishTemplate:SfnpTemplate:Sfnp Kurmanji (Northern) şîr Template:IPA 'milk' See Kurdish phonology
Sorani (Central) شیر
Palewani (Southern)
PolishTemplate:Sfnp miś Template:Audio-IPA 'teddy bear' See Polish phonology
PortugueseTemplate:Sfnp fino Template:IPA 'thin' Also occurs as an unstressed allophone of other vowels. May be represented by Template:Angle bracket. See Portuguese phonology
RomanianTemplate:Sfnp insulă Template:IPA 'island' See Romanian phonology
RussianTemplate:Sfnp лист Template:Audio-IPA 'leaf' Only occurs word-initially or after palatalized consonants. See Russian phonology
Serbo-CroatianTemplate:Sfnp vile Template:IPA 'hayfork' See Serbo-Croatian phonology
SpanishTemplate:Sfnp tipo Template:IPA 'type' May also be represented by Template:Angle bracket. See Spanish phonology
SothoTemplate:Sfnp ho bitsa Template:IPA 'to call' Contrasts close, near-close and close-mid front unrounded vowels.Template:Sfnp See Sotho phonology
Swedish Central StandardTemplate:SfnpTemplate:Sfnp bli Template:IPA 'to stay' Often realized as a sequence Template:IPA or Template:IPA (hear the word: Template:Audio-IPA); it may also be fricated Template:IPA or, in some regions, fricated and centralized (Template:IPAblink).Template:SfnpTemplate:Sfnp See Swedish phonology
ThaiTemplate:Sfnp กริช Template:IPA 'dagger'
TurkishTemplate:SfnpTemplate:Sfnp ip Template:IPA 'rope' See Turkish phonology
UkrainianTemplate:Sfnp місто Template:IPA 'city, town' See Ukrainian phonology
YorubaTemplate:Sfnp síbí Template:IPA 'spoon'


  1. Template:Vowel terminology
  2. Maddox, Maeve. "DailyWritingTips: The Six Spellings of "Long E"". Retrieved July 20, 2014. 
  3. Labov, William; Sharon, Ash; Boberg, Charles (2006). The Atlas of North American English. Berlin: Mouton-de Gruyter. chpt. 17. ISBN 978-3-11-016746-7. 


External links

Template:IPA navigation