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DIPHTHONGS

Also called gliding vowels
A significant glide from one articulatory
position to another
They have two target configurations
represented by two vowel symbols joined
together
we will have to specify both targets in
terms of the part of the tongue which is
raised and in terms of the degree of
tongue raising.

the two targets (two elements of the
diphthong) are rarely fully realised
both – most often, the second target
is just aimed at
diphthongs are conventionally
represented in the vowel diagram by
specifying the relative position of the
first target element and drawing an
arrow which just points in the
direction of the second target element

Length. a diphthong is a single vowel segment. because all the eight of them belong to the set of long vowels. recognized as such by the native speakers. however. is not a distinctive feature when diphthongs are concerned.Sometimes the first and the second element of a diphthong will differ with respect to their characteristic lip position. and distinguished from a sequence of two monophthongs. .

that is. closing diphthongs (5)-the glide is made from a more open to a more close position centring diphthongs (3).the glide is made from a more peripheral to a more central position . distinguished by the nature of their second target.There are two sub-sets of diphthongs in English. by the direction in which the glide is made.

. The first element of the diphthong /a ɪ/ is not similar to any of the English monophthong phonemes.Closing diphthongs / aɪ / The articulators assume the first target position by raising the rather front part of the tongue to a very open position. keeping the lips in a neutral position. A glide is made towards the second target. by raising the front to central part of the tongue towards the close-mid position.

/ aɪ / DISTINCTIVE FEATURES Type of articulation Vowel Manner of articulation Diphthong FIRST TARGET: Part of the tongue Front Degree of raising Open Lip position Neutral GLIDE TO : Part of the tongue Front to central Degree of raising Above close-mid Lip position Very slightly spread or neutral SPELLING PATTERNS: i kind y spy ye dye ie die ei either eye eye eigh height igh high .

Phoneme /eɪ/ The articulators assume the first target position by raising the front part of the tongue to a position between open-mid and close-mid with the lips in a slightly spread position A glide is made towards the second target. by raising the front to central part of the tongue towards the close-mid position. .

/eɪ/ DISTINCTIVE FEATURES Type of articulation Vowel Manner of articulation Diphthong FIRST TARGET: Part of the tongue Front Degree of raising Open-mid to close-mid Lip position Slightly spread GLIDE TO: Part of the tongue Front to central Degree of raising Above close-mid Lip position Slightly spread SPELLING PATTERNS: a take ea break ei reign ey they ay clay ai main .

Phoneme /ɔɪ/ The articulators assume the first target position by raising the back part of the tongue to a position around the open-mid level (somewhere between /ɔ:/ and /ɒ/) A glide is made towards the second target. by raising the front to central part of the tongue towards the close-mid position. .

/ɔɪ/ DISTINCTIVE FEATURES Type of articulation Vowel Manner of articulation Diphthong FIRST TARGET: Part of the tongue Back Degree of raising Open-mid (to close-mid) Lip position Slightly rounded GLIDE TO: Part of the tongue Front to central Degree of raising Close-mid Lip position Neutral SPELLING PATTERNS oy toy oi voice .

by raising the back to central part of the tongue towards the close-mid position.Phoneme /ɑʊ/ The articulators assume the first target position by raising the back (to central) part of the tongue to a very open position (similar to that of /ɑː/ ) A glide is made towards the second target. The position of the lips is changed from neutral to slightly rounded. /ɑʊ/ instead of /aʊ/ .

brown round. bound ou ./ɑʊ/ DISTINCTIVE FEATURES Type of articulation Vowel Manner of articulation Diphthong FIRST TARGET: Part of the tongue Back (to central) Degree of raising Open Lip position Neutral GLIDE TO: Part of the tongue Back Degree of raising Above close-mid Lip position Very slightly rounded SPELLING PATTERNS ow now.

Phoneme /əʊ/ The articulators assume the first target position by raising the central part of the tongue to position between open-mid and close-mid. (this is the are of the long schwa /ɜː/. but the symbol of the short schwa is used) A glide is made towards the second target. . The position of the lips is changed from neutral to slightly rounded. by raising the back to central part of the tongue towards the close-mid position.

/əʊ/ DISTINCTIVE FEATURES Type of articulation Vowel Manner of articulation Diphthong FIRST TARGET: Part of the tongue Central Degree of raising Open-mid to close-mid Lip position Neutral GLIDE TO: Part of the tongue Back to central Degree of raising Above close-mid Lip position Slightly rounded SPELLING PATTERNS: o no. alone oa load. go. bowl ou soul oe toe . goat ow know.

A glide is made towards the second target.to-central part of the tongue is raised to the close-mid position. with the lips neutrally open. the area of schwa). almost neutral. the front. . and the lips are only slightly spread.Centring Phoneme /diphthongs ɪə/ The articulators assume the first target position. by lowering the central part of the tongue to position between open-mid and close-mid (roughly.

ea. snear. pier ere here . ie + r beer. ei.Centering diphthongs /ɪə/ DISTINCTIVE FEATURES Type of articulation Vowel Manner of articulation Diphthong FIRST TARGET: Part of the tongue Front to central Degree of raising Above close-mid Lip position Very slightly spread GLIDE TO: Part of the tongue Central Degree of raising Open-mid to close-mid Lip position Neutral SPELLING PATTERNS: ee. weird.

almost neutral.Phoneme /ʊə/ The articulators assume the first target position by raising the back to central part of the tongue to the close-mid position. with the lips neutrally open. A glide is made towards the second target. by lowering the central part of the tongue to position between open-mid and close-mid (roughly. with the lips only slightly rounded. . the area of schwa).

/ʊə/ DISTINCTIVE FEATURES Type of articulation Vowel Manner of articulation Diphthong FIRST TARGET: Part of the tongue Back to central Degree of raising Above close-mid Lip position Very slightly rounded GLIDE TO : Part of the tongue Central Degree of raising Open-mid to close-mid Lip position Neutral SPELLING PATTERNS during ure pure oo. u + r poor. tour. . ou.

The lips remain neutral.Phoneme /ɛə/ The articulators assume the first target position by raising the front part of the tongue to the open-mid position. too. . by raising the central part of the tongue to a position equally open (open-mid) as that of the first target. with neutral lips. A glide is made towards the second target.

heir air hair ear ./ɛə/ DISTINCTIVE FEATURES Type of articulation Vowel Manner of articulation Diphthong FIRST TARGET: Part of the tongue Front Degree of raising Open to open-mid Lip position Neutral GLIDE TO : Part of the tongue Front to central Degree of raising Below open-mid Lip position Very slightly spread or neutral SPELLING PATTERNS: are hare bear NB also there. their.

higher /haɪə/ and player /pleɪə/. the schwa belongs to a separate morpheme: high+er.fire /faɪə/ and hour /ɑʊə/ vs. a so-called thripthong . play+er ) native speakers feel that fire /faɪə/ and hour /ɑʊə/ contain one vowel. the second pair obviously contains a diphthong followed by a schwa (after all.