Manner of articulation  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

In linguistics (articulatory phonetics), manner of articulation describes how the tongue, lips, jaw, and other speech organs are involved in making a sound. You can see a movie clip showing the human articulators in action here. Often the concept is only used for the production of consonants, even though the movement of the articulars will also greatly alter the resonant properties of the vocal tract, thereby changing the formant structure of speech sounds that is crucial for the identification of vowels. For any place of articulation, there may be several manners, and therefore several homorganic consonants.

One parameter of manner is stricture, that is, how closely the speech organs approach one another. Parameters other than stricture are those involved in the r-like sounds (taps and trills), and the sibilancy of fricatives. Often nasality and laterality are included in manner, but phoneticians such as Peter Ladefoged consider them to be independent.


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Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Manner of articulation" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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