Rhotacism (/ˈrtəsɪzəm/ ROH-tə-siz-əm)[1] or rhotacization is a sound change that converts one consonant (usually a voiced alveolar consonant: /z/, /d/, /l/, or /n/) to a rhotic consonant in a certain environment. The most common may be of /z/ to /r/.[2] When a dialect or member of a language family resists the change and keeps a /z/ sound, this is sometimes known as zetacism.

The term comes from the Greek letter rho, denoting /r/.

  1. ^ "American English Dictionary: Definition of rhotacism". Collins. Retrieved December 13, 2013.
  2. ^ Catford (2001:178)

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