IPA Symbol for NG-

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IPA Symbol for NG-

Postby Lexicon » 2010-01-13, 0:43

Hi everyone,

I am pretty much totally clueless on Vietnamese, and haven't been able to find an answer on this.

I am looking for the IPA symbol for syllable-initial /ng/.

The symbol for the syllable-final version is /ŋ/ as in English or running.

/ŋ/ is a velar nasal.

Vietnamese is the only case I can think of off the top of my head with common syllable-initial forms. The surname Nguyen and the word ngang "level".

The initial sound is more of a velar nasal stop. Any clues?
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Re: IPA Symbol for NG-

Postby Sean of the Dead » 2010-01-13, 1:05

Is that even possible? :? I would think the only way that would be possible is if it were /ŋ͡ɡ/ :hmm:
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Re: IPA Symbol for NG-

Postby Lexicon » 2010-01-13, 2:39

I think it may be /ŋ̯ /

That is /ŋ/ (which is naturally syllabic) with the IPA marking for non-syllabic.

Seems like turning it around backwards would be a lot easier.

edit -- ok I obviously don't know how to enter unicode on here, but that's what it should be.
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Re: IPA Symbol for NG-

Postby Tenebrarum » 2010-01-13, 11:55

It's simply /ŋ/, as far as I concern. This syllable onset is present in quite a lot of Sub-Saharan languages and Middle Chinese surely had it.

I once read this paper saying every syllable of Vietnamese is preceded a subtle glottal stop. Being a native speaker I wasn't aware of such a thing, but I guess that distinctive choppy sound of the language must come from somewhere.

Lexicon wrote:That is /ŋ/ (which is naturally syllabic) with the IPA marking for non-syllabic.

I don't understand. Why is it "naturally syllabic" and, first off, what do you mean by that?
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Re: IPA Symbol for NG-

Postby Lexicon » 2010-01-13, 15:30

syllabic when referring to a sonorant (nasals, liquids, and glides) refers to those sounds which generally come at the end of a syllable and have some length to them (can't think of how to best say this).

Compare /m/ in English Mary with rhythm or L in like with little

For most sonorants it results in a reversal of the steps of articulation (the order in which you do the things needed to make the sound). For ng it's a little different:

/ŋ̯ / /ŋ / velar nasals

A velar (from velar the velum or soft palate) nasal is a sound in which the flow of air out of the body is redirected from the mouth to be made to exit through the nose by pressing the back of the tongue to the velum — the soft part of the roof of the mouth farthest from the front teeth; it’s about as far back in the mouth as can be reached with the tip of the tongue. This allows the only the throat to act as a resonance chamber resulting in a shallow sound which is ended with a glottal stop. English has two velar nasals -- /ŋ/ which occurs at the end of a syllable (syllable-final) as in ring, singer and meaning, and syllable-initial /ŋ̯/ which occurs only at the beginning of certain foreign words such as the Vietnamese surname, Nguyen.

Production of syllable-final /ŋ/ is begun with the the vocal cords vibrating while air is allowed to escape through the mouth, then the back of the tongue raised and pressed against the velum, sealing the mouth and redirecting the already flowing air through the nose. Sound is ended by interrupting the flow of air with the glottal stop /g/. Syllable-initial /ŋ̯/ is produced similarly except that production is begun with the tongue pressed against the velum with the initial voicing being wholly nasal. /ŋ̯/ ends in a /g/ as a glottal plosive release.
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