Stop Consonant - Classification - Aspiration

Aspiration

In aspirated stops, the vocal cords (vocal folds) are abducted at the time of release. In a prevocalic aspirated stop (a stop followed by a vowel or sonorant), the time when the vocal cords begin to vibrate will be delayed until the vocal folds come together enough for voicing to begin, and will usually start with breathy voicing. The duration between the release of the stop and the voice onset is called the voice onset time (VOT) or the aspiration interval. Highly aspirated stops have a long period of aspiration, so that there is a long period of voiceless airflow (a phonetic ) before the onset of the vowel. In tenuis stops, the vocal cords come together for voicing immediately following the release, and there is little or no aspiration (a voice onset time close to zero). In English, there may be a brief segment of breathy voice that identifies the stop as voiceless and not voiced. In voiced stops, the vocal folds are set for voice before the release, and often vibrate during the entire hold, and in English, the voicing after release is not breathy. A stop is called "fully voiced" if it is voiced during the entire occlusion. In English, however, initial voiced stops like /#b/ or /#d/ may have no voicing during the period of occlusion, or the voicing may start shortly before the release and continue after release, though word-final stops tend to be fully voiced: In most dialects of English, the final g in the bag is likely to be fully voiced, while the initial b will only be voiced during part of its occlusion. Initial voiceless stops, like the p in pie, are aspirated, with a palpable puff of air upon release, while a stop after an s, as in spy, is tenuis (unaspirated). When spoken near a candle flame, the flame will flicker more after the words par, tar, and car are articulated, compared with spar, star, and scar. In the common pronunciation of papa, the initial p is aspirated while the medial p is not.

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