Close back rounded vowel

Close back rounded vowel
u
IPA Number308
Audio sample
Encoding
Entity (decimal)u
Unicode (hex)U+0075
X-SAMPAu
Braille⠥ (braille pattern dots-136)

The close back rounded vowel, or high back rounded vowel,[1] is a type of vowel sound used in many spoken languages. The symbol in the International Phonetic Alphabet that represents this sound is ⟨u⟩, and the equivalent X-SAMPA symbol is u.

In most languages, this rounded vowel is pronounced with protruded lips ('endolabial'). However, in a few cases the lips are compressed ('exolabial').

[u] alternates with labio-velar approximant [w] in certain languages, such as French, and in the diphthongs of some languages, [u̯] with the non-syllabic diacritic and [w] are used in different transcription systems to represent the same sound.

  1. ^ While the International Phonetic Association prefers the terms "close" and "open" for vowel height, many linguists use "high" and "low".

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