Uvular flap

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Uvular flap
IPA number 112 505
Entity (decimal) ɢ​̆
Unicode (hex) U+0262 U+0306

The uvular flap is a type of consonantal sound, used in some spoken languages. There is no dedicated symbol for this sound in the IPA. It can specified by adding a 'short' diacritic to the letter for the uvular plosive, ⟨ɢ̆⟩, but normally it is covered by the unmodified letter for the uvular trill, ⟨ʀ⟩,[1] since the two have never been reported to contrast.

The uvular flap is not known to exist as a phoneme in any language.

More commonly, it is said to vary with the much more frequent uvular trill, and is most likely a single-contact trill [ʀ̆] rather than an actual flap [ɢ̆] in these languages. (The primary difference between a flap and a trill is the airstream, not the number of contacts.)


Features of the uvular flap:

  • Its manner of articulation is flap, which means it is produced with a single contraction of the muscles so that one articulator (usually the tongue) is thrown against another.
  • Its place of articulation is uvular, which means it is articulated with the back of the tongue (the dorsum) at the uvula.
  • Its phonation is voiced, which means the vocal cords vibrate during the articulation.
  • It is an oral consonant, which means air is allowed to escape through the mouth only.
  • It is a central consonant, which means it is produced by directing the airstream along the center of the tongue, rather than to the sides.
  • The airstream mechanism is pulmonic, which means it is articulated by pushing air solely with the lungs and diaphragm, as in most sounds.


Language Word IPA Meaning Notes
Dutch[2] rood [ʀ̆oːt] 'red' More common than a uvular trill.[3] Realization of /r/ varies considerably among dialects. See Dutch phonology
German Standard[4] ehre [ˈʔeːʀ̆ə] 'honour' Common intervocalic realization of uvular trill.[4] See German phonology
Ibibio[5] [úfʌ̟̀ɢ̆ɔ̞] [translation needed] Intervocalic allophone of /k/; may be a velar approximant [ɰ] instead.[5]
Limburgish Hasselt dialect[6] weuren [ˈβ̞ø̠ːʀ̆ən] '(they) were' Possible intervocalic allophone of /r/; may be alveolar [ɾ] instead.[6]
Okanagan Southern[7] [ɢ̆àlə́p] 'lose' Allophone of /ʕ/; corresponds to [ʕ] in other dialects.[7]
Supyire[8] tadugugo [taduɢ̆uɢ̆o] 'place to go up' May be in free variation [ɡ].[8]
Wahgi[9] [example needed] Allophone of /ʟ̝/.[9]
Yiddish Standard[10] בריק [bʀ̆ɪk] 'bridge' Less commonly a trill [ʀ]; can be alveolar [ɾ ~ r] instead.[10] See Yiddish phonology


  1. Bruce Connell, Lower Cross Wordlist
  2. Collins & Mees (2003), pp. 42 and 199.
  3. Collins & Mees (2003), pp. 42.
  4. 4.0 4.1 Lodge (2009), p. 46.
  5. 5.0 5.1 Urua (2004), p. 106.
  6. 6.0 6.1 Peters (2006), p. 118.
  7. 7.0 7.1 Kinkade (1967), pp. 232.
  8. 8.0 8.1 Carlson (1994), p. 10.
  9. 9.0 9.1 Phillips (1976), p. ?.
  10. 10.0 10.1 Kleine (2003), p. 263.


  • Carlson, Robert (1994). A Grammar of Supyire. Walter de Gruyter.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  • Collins, Beverley; Mees, Inger M. (2003), The Phonetics of English and Dutch, Fifth Revised Edition (PDF), ISBN 9004103406<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  • Kinkade, M. Dale (1967). "Uvular-Pharyngeal Resonants in Interior Salish". International Journal of American Linguistics. 33 (3): 228–234. doi:10.1086/464965.CS1 maint: ref=harv (link)<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  • Kleine, Ane (2003), "Standard Yiddish", Journal of the International Phonetic Association, 33 (2): 261–265, doi:10.1017/S0025100303001385<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  • Lodge, Ken (2009), A Critical Introduction to Phonetics, ISBN 978-0-8264-8873-2<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  • Peters, Jörg (2006), "The dialect of Hasselt", Journal of the International Phonetic Association, 36 (1): 117–124, doi:10.1017/S0025100306002428<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  • Phillips, Donald J. (1976). Wahgi Phonology and Morphology.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  • Urua, Eno-Abasi E. (2004), "Ibibio", Journal of the International Phonetic Association, 34 (1): 105–109, doi:10.1017/S0025100304001550<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>