|Near-close near-front rounded vowel|
Handbook of the International Phonetic Association defines [?] as a mid-centralized (lowered and centralized) close front rounded vowel (transcribed [y?] or [ÿ?]), and the current official IPA name of the vowel transcribed with the symbol ⟨?⟩ is near-close near-front rounded vowel. However, acoustic analysis of cardinal vowels as produced by Daniel Jones and John C. Wells has shown that basically all cardinal front rounded vowels (so not just but also [ø, oe, ?]) are near-front (or front-central) in their articulation, so [?] may be just a lowered cardinal ([y?]), a vowel that is intermediate between cardinal and cardinal . In many languages that contrast close, near-close and close-mid front rounded vowels, there is no appreciable difference in backness between them. In some transcriptions, the vowel is transcribed with ⟨y⟩ or ⟨ø⟩. When that is the case, this article transcribes it with the symbols ⟨y?⟩ (a lowered ⟨y⟩) and ⟨ø?⟩ (a raised ⟨ø⟩), respectively. ⟨?⟩ implies too weak a rounding in some cases (specifically in the case of the vowels that are described as tense in Germanic languages), which would have to be specified as ⟨⟩.
In some languages, however, ⟨?⟩ is used to transcribe a vowel that is as low as close-mid but still fits the definition of a lowered and centralized (or just lowered) cardinal . It occurs in German Standard German as well as some dialects of English (such as Estuary), and it can be transcribed with the symbol ⟨⟩ (a lowered ⟨?⟩) in narrow transcription. For the close-mid front rounded vowel that is not usually transcribed with the symbol ⟨?⟩ (or ⟨y⟩), see close-mid front rounded vowel.
In most languages, the rounded vowel is pronounced with compressed lips (in an exolabial manner). However, in a few cases, the lips are protruded (in an endolabial manner), such as in Swedish, which contrasts the two types of rounding.
The near-close front rounded vowel is transcribed with ⟨y⟩, ⟨?⟩ and ⟨ø⟩ in world's languages. However, when the Latin ⟨y⟩ or ⟨ø⟩ are used for this vowel, ⟨?⟩ may still be used for phonological reasons for a vowel that is lower than near-close, potentially leading to confusion. This is the case in several Germanic language varieties, as well as in some transcriptions of Shanghainese.
In the following table, the difference between compressed and protruded vowels is ignored, except in the case of Swedish. Short vowels transcribed with ⟨?⟩, ⟨?⟩, ⟨?⟩ and ⟨oe⟩ in broad transcription are assumed to have a weak rounding in most cases.
|Symbol||Phonetic values in various language varieties|
|Dutch||Dzongkha||Frisian languages||German||Limburgish and Ripuarian dialects||Shanghainese||Swedish|
|Fering||Saterland||Northern Standard||Hamont-Achel||Hasselt||Kerkrade||Maastricht||Weert||Central Standard|
|⟨y⟩||~ [?] ~||N/A||N/A||[?]||N/A||same as ⟨?⟩|
|⟨y:⟩||~ [?:] ~||~ [?:]||N/A|
|⟨?⟩||same as ⟨?⟩||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|⟨?⟩||N/A||same as ⟨ø⟩||~  ~|
|⟨ø⟩||same as ⟨ø:⟩||N/A||N/A||N/A||same as ⟨?⟩||same as ⟨?⟩||same as ⟨?⟩||same as ⟨?⟩||[?]||same as ⟨oe⟩|
|⟨ø:⟩||[ø?] ~ ~||~||[?:]||~ [ø?]||[ø?]||N/A|
|⟨?⟩||same as ⟨?⟩||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|⟨oe⟩||same as ⟨?⟩||N/A||N/A|
Because of that, IPA transcriptions of Limburgish dialects on popflock.com resource utilize the symbol ⟨ø⟩ instead of ⟨?⟩, following Peters (2006).
The near-close front compressed vowel is typically transcribed in IPA simply as ⟨?⟩, and that is the convention used in this article. There is no dedicated diacritic for compression in the IPA. However, the compression of the lips can be shown with the letter ⟨⟩ as ⟨?⟩ (simultaneous [?] and labial compression) or ⟨⟩ ([?] modified with labial compression). The spread-lip diacritic ⟨ ? ⟩ may also be used with a rounded vowel letter ⟨⟩ as an ad hoc symbol, though technically 'spread' means unrounded.
The close-mid front compressed vowel can be transcribed ⟨⟩, ⟨⟩ or ⟨⟩.
Because front rounded vowels are assumed to have compression, and few descriptions cover the distinction, some of the following may actually have protrusion. Vowels transcribed with ⟨y?⟩ and ⟨ø?⟩ may have a stronger rounding than the prototypical value of ⟨?⟩.
|Bashkir||?? / dürt||'four'|
|Bavarian||Northern||vill||[vl]||'much'||Allophone of /i/ before /l/.|
|Buwal||[wk]||'bitter'||Palatalized allophone of /?/ when adjacent to a labialized consonant.|
|Chinese||Shanghainese||? / koe||[kø]||'liver'||Realization of /ø/ in open syllables and /?/ in closed syllables. Near-close [ø?] in the former case, close-mid  in the latter.|
|Danish||Standard||købe||['k?ø?:p?]||'buy'||Also described as close-mid . See Danish phonology|
|Dutch||Standard||nu||[ny?]||'now'||Also transcribed as close front  and, in the Standard Northern accent, as close central . Typically transcribed in IPA with ⟨y⟩. See Dutch phonology|
|English||Estuary||foot||[ft]||'foot'||Possible realization of /?/ and /u:/. In the former case, the height varies between near-close [?] and close-mid .|
|Multicultural London||Possible realization of /?/.|
|Rural white Southern American||[f?t?]||Can be central instead.|
|West Country||[f?t]||Possible realization of /?/ and /u:/.|
|New Zealand||nurse||[n?:s]||'nurse'||Possible realization of /?:/ (and also /?:/). See New Zealand English phonology|
|Ulster||mule||[mj?l]||'mule'||Short allophone of /u/; occurs only after /j/. See English phonology|
|Faroese||krúss||[ks:]||'mug'||See Faroese phonology|
|French||Parisian||tu||[t?y?]||'you'||Also described as close ; typically transcribed in IPA with ⟨y⟩. See French phonology|
|Quebec||lune||[l?n]||'moon'||Allophone of /y/ in closed syllables. See Quebec French phonology|
|German||Standard||schützen||['t?sn?]||'protect'||Close-mid; it may be as high as for some speakers. See Standard German phonology|
|Some speakers||schwimmen||[?v?m:]||'to swim'||Allophone of /?/ before labial consonants. Used by some speakers in Northern and Central Germany. See Standard German phonology|
|Hungarian||üt||'hit'||Typically transcribed in IPA with ⟨y⟩. See Hungarian phonology|
|Icelandic||vinur||[':n]||'friend'||Close-mid; also described as central . See Icelandic phonology|
|Kurdish||dwênê||[d?ne:]||'yesterday'||Allophone of /we:/ before consonant.|
|Low German||lütt / lut||[l?t]||'little'|
|Norwegian||nytt||[n?t:]||'new'||The example word is from Urban East Norwegian, in which the vowel varies between compressed [?] and protruded . Its height has been variously described as near-close [?] and close . See Norwegian phonology.|
|Ripuarian||Kerkrade||kümme||['ky?m?]||'to moan'||May be transcribed in IPA with ⟨y⟩. See Kerkrade dialect phonology|
|Saterland Frisian||röögje||['?ø?:?j?]||'to rain'||Phonetic realization of /ø:/ and /?/. Near-close [ø?:] in the former case, close-mid  in the latter. Phonetically, the latter is nearly identical to /oe:/ .|
|Scots||buit||[b?t]||'boot'||May be central instead.|
|Swedish||Central Standard||ut||[?:t?]||'out'||Often realized as a sequence  or  (hear the word: ). The height has been variously described as near-close [?:] and close . Typically transcribed in IPA with ⟨?:⟩; it is central in other dialects. See Swedish phonology|
|Turkish||atasözü||'proverb'||Allophone of /y/ described variously as "word-final" and "occurring in final open syllable of a phrase". See Turkish phonology|
|Near-close front protruded vowel|
Catford notes[full ] that most languages with rounded front and back vowels use distinct types of labialization, protruded back vowels and compressed front vowels. However, a few languages, such as Scandinavian languages, have protruded front vowels. One of them, Swedish, even contrasts the two types of rounding in front vowels as well as height and duration.
As there are no diacritics in the IPA to distinguish protruded and compressed rounding, the old diacritic for labialization, ⟨⟩, will be used here as an ad hoc symbol for protruded front vowels. Another possible transcription is ⟨⟩ or ⟨⟩ (a near-close front vowel modified by endolabialization), but that could be misread as a diphthong.
The close-mid front protruded vowel can be transcribed ⟨⟩, ⟨⟩ or ⟨⟩.
For the close-mid front protruded vowel that is not usually transcribed with the symbol ⟨?⟩ (or ⟨y⟩), see close-mid front protruded vowel.
Acoustically, this sound is "between" the more typical compressed near-close front vowel [?] and the unrounded near-close front vowel .
|Norwegian||nytt||[nt:]||'new'||The example word is from Urban East Norwegian, in which the vowel varies between protruded  and compressed . Its height has been variously described as near-close [?] and close . See Norwegian phonology.|
|Swedish||Central Standard||ylle||'wool'||The height has been variously described as close-mid , near-close  and close . See Swedish phonology|