RE: Why incomplete subscript/superscript alphabet ?

From: Doug Ewell <>
Date: Mon, 10 Oct 2016 12:42:40 -0700

Hans Åberg wrote:

> I think that IPA might be designed for broad phonetic transcriptions
> [1], with a requirement to distinguish phonemes within each given
> language.

From the Wikipedia article you cited:

"For example, one particular pronunciation of the English word little
may be transcribed using the IPA as /ˈlɪtəl/ or [ˈlɪɾɫ̩]; the
broad, phonemic transcription, placed between slashes, indicates merely
that the word ends with phoneme /l/, but the narrow, allophonic
transcription, placed between square brackets, indicates that this final
/l/ ([ɫ]) is dark (velarized)."

IPA can be used pretty much as broadly or as narrowly as one wishes.

Doug Ewell | Thornton, CO, US |
Received on Mon Oct 10 2016 - 14:42:40 CDT

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