Th'ám [t͡xʼą́]

  1. Pitch accent with three tones: high, á [á]; middle, a [ā]; and low, à [à] (+ neutral a [a])
  2. Ejectives are marked orthographically with an apostrophe
  3. Vowels are nasalised when followed by a nasal consonant that is either word final or followed by a non-nasal consonant, similar to French
  4. /ʜ/ is often elided between vowels that are the same producing long vowels
  5. Long vowels cannot be nasalised
  6. Palatalisation [◌ʲ] occurs on most unstressed syllables
  7. When /ɻ/ is palatalised it becomes [j]
  8. /ɻ/ is not realised as [j] when word initial
  9. /ʜ/ becomes [xʲ] when palatalised
  10. Plosives are aspirated [◌ʰ] when word initial and the syllable is stressed
  11. When plosives are word final glottal closure coupled with no audible release [ʔ͡◌̚] occurs
  12. Plosives are breathy voiced [◌̤] or [◌ʱ] before other consonants
  13. Word stress is usually, but not always, on the second syllable
  14. There are no diphthongs
  15. Glottal stops [ʔ] occur in hiatūs between vowels
  16. IPA transcriptions show nasal vowels using an ogonek rather than a tilde where tonal marks would render it illegible.


Front Central Back
Close i ɨ ʉ u
Open-mid ɛ ɔ
Open ä
  • /ɨ/ and /ʉ/ may lower to [ɪ] and [ʊ]
  • /ɛ/ may vary, sometimes being realised as [e̞] or [e] instead
  • /ɔ/ may also vary and is sometimes realised [o̞] or [o] instead
  • /ä/ is usually central but can also be the front vowel [a] or even the back vowel [ɑ]


Place → Labial Coronal Dorsal Radical Glottal
Manner ↓ Bilabial Labio-dental Dental Alveolar Lateral Post-alveolar Retroflex Palatal Velar Epiglottal
Pulmonic consonants
Nasal m n
Plosive t d k g ʔ
Fricative f s z ʃ ʒ x ɣ ʜ
Alveolar affricate t̪͡θ d̪͡ð t͡s d͡z t͡ʃ d͡ʒ t͡x d͡ɣ
Velar affricate k͡θ g͡ð k͡s g͡z k͡x g͡ɣ
Approximant l ɻ j
Non-pulmonic consonants
Plosive ejective
Fricative ejective
Alveolar affricate ejective t̪͡θʼ t͡sʼ t͡ʃʼ t͡xʼ
Velar affricate ejective k͡θʼ k͡sʼ k͡xʼ
Implosive ɓ ɗ ɠ
Click ʘ ǁ ǂ
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