Voiceless bilabial affricate

A voiceless bilabial affricate ([p͡ɸ] in IPA) is a rare affricate consonant that is initiated as a bilabial stop [p] and released as a voiceless bilabial fricative [ɸ]. It has not been reported to occur phonemically in any language.

Voiceless bilabial affricate
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Features of the voiceless bilabial affricate:

  • Its manner of articulation is affricate, which means it is produced by first stopping the airflow entirely, then allowing air flow through a constricted channel at the place of articulation, causing turbulence.
  • Its phonation is voiceless, which means it is produced without vibrations of the vocal cords. In some languages the vocal cords are actively separated, so it is always voiceless; in others the cords are lax, so that it may take on the voicing of adjacent sounds.
  • 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.


DutchOrsmaal-Gussenhoven dialect[1]up[ʊp͡ɸ]'up, onto'Optional pre-pausal allophone of /p/.[1]
EnglishBroad Cockney[2]up[ˈɐʔp͡ɸ]'up'Allophone of /p/, occurs mainly word-finally.[3] See English phonology
Received Pronunciation[4]Rare allophone of /p/.[4] See English phonology
North Wales[5][ˈəp͡ɸ]Word-initial and word-final allophone of /p/; in free variation with a strongly aspirated stop [pʰ].[5] See English phonology
Scouse[6][ˈʊp͡ɸ]Possible syllable-initial and word-final allophone of /p/.[6] See English phonology
GermanSome speakerstropfen[ˈtʁ̥ɔp͡ɸn̩]'to drop'Allophone of /p͡f/. See Standard German phonology
Kaingang[7]fy[ˈp͡ɸɤ]'seed'Possible word-initial allophone of /ɸ/.[7]
Northern TiwaTaos dialect[ˌp͡ɸìˑˈwɛ̈̄ːnǣ]'daughter'Allophone of /pʰ/, in free variation with [ph] and [ɸ]. See Taos phonology


  1. Peters (2010), p. 240.
  2. Wells (1982), pp. 322-323.
  3. Wells (1982), p. 323.
  4. Gimson (2014), p. 172.
  5. Penhallurick (2004), pp. 108-109.
  6. Wells (1982), p. 372.
  7. Jolkesky (2009), pp. 680-681.


  • Gimson, Alfred Charles (2014), Cruttenden, Alan (ed.), Gimson's Pronunciation of English (8th ed.), Routledge, ISBN 9781444183092
  • Jolkesky, Marcelo Pinho de Valhery (2009), "Fonologia e prosódia do Kaingáng falado em Cacique Doble", Anais do SETA, Campinas: Editora do IEL-UNICAMP, 3: 675–685
  • Penhallurick, Robert (2004), "Welsh English: phonology", in Schneider, Edgar W.; Burridge, Kate; Kortmann, Bernd; Mesthrie, Rajend; Upton, Clive (eds.), A handbook of varieties of English, 1: Phonology, Mouton de Gruyter, pp. 98–112, ISBN 3-11-017532-0
  • Peters, Jörg (2010), "The Flemish–Brabant dialect of Orsmaal–Gussenhoven", Journal of the International Phonetic Association, 40 (2): 239–246, doi:10.1017/S0025100310000083
  • Wells, John C. (1982). Accents of English. Volume 2: The British Isles (pp. i–xx, 279–466). Cambridge University Press. ISBN 0-52128540-2.
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