Retroflex flap

The retroflex flap is a type of consonantal sound, used in some spoken languages. The symbol in the International Phonetic Alphabet that represents this sound is ɽ, and the equivalent X-SAMPA symbol is r`.

Retroflex flap
IPA Number125
Entity (decimal)ɽ
Unicode (hex)U+027D
Audio sample
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Features of the retroflex flap:

  • Its manner of articulation is tap or 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 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.


Bengali[1] গাড়ি [ɡäɽiː] 'car' Apical postalveolar.[1] See Bengali phonology
Dutch[2][3] North Brabant[4] riem [ɽim] 'belt' A rare word-initial variant of /r/.[5][6] Realization of /r/ varies considerably among dialects. See Dutch phonology
Northern Netherlands[4][7]
Elfdalian luv [ɽʏːv] 'permission'
Enga la [jɑɽɑ] 'shame'
Gokana[8] bele [bēɽē] 'we' Apical postalveolar. Allophone of /l/, medially between vowels within the morpheme, and finally in the morpheme before a following vowel in the same word. It can be a postalveolar trill or simply [l] instead.[8]
Hausa bara [bəɽä] 'servant' Represented in Arabic script with ر
Hindustani[9] ड़ा/بڑا [bəɽäː] 'big' Apical postalveolar; contrasts unaspirated and aspirated forms.[9] See Hindustani phonology
Japanese[10][11][12] /kokoro [ko̞ko̞ɾ̠o̞] 'heart' Apical postalveolar, may be alveolar [ɾ] instead.[10][11][12] See Japanese phonology
Nepali[13] भाड़ा [bʱäɽä] 'rent' Apical postalveolar; postvocalic allophone of /ɖ, ɖʱ/.[14] See Nepali phonology
Norwegian Central dialects[15] blad [bɽɑː] 'leaf' Allophone of /l/ and /r/. In Urban East Norwegian it often alternates with the alveolar [ɾ], save for a small number of words.[15][16] See Norwegian phonology
Eastern dialects[15][16]
Portuguese Some European speakers[17] falar [fəˈläɽ] 'to speak' Allophone of /ɾ/. See Portuguese phonology
Brazilian caipira speakers[18][19] madeira [mɐˈdeɽə] 'wood'
Some sertanejo speakers[20] gargalhar [ɡäɽɡɐˈʎäɽ] 'to chortle'
Punjabi ਘੋੜਾ [kòːɽɑ̀ː] 'horse'
Shipibo[21] ? [ˈɽo̽ɽo̽] 'to break' Apical postalveolar; possible realization of /r/.[21]
Swedish Some dialects[16] blad [bɽɑː(d)] 'leaf' Allophone of /l/. See Swedish phonology
Warlpiri jarda [caɽa] 'sleep' Transcribes /ɽ/ as rd.

See also



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