A retroflex is a consonant formed when the tongue rises toward the roof of the mouth and then retracts toward the back of the oral cavity. Present-Day English has one retroflex, which is voiced (vocal cords vibrating during the articulation of the retroflex). (The retroflex, the lateral /l/, the nasals, and the semivowels /w/ and /j/ are sometimes called the resonants.)

1. /r/ (the phoneme spelled r in root): (voiced) alveolar retroflex.


[Return to "Consonants"]

[Return to "Phonology"]