Syllable

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syllable

A syllable is a sequence of speech sounds (formed from vowels and consonants) organized into a single unit. Syllables act as the building blocks of a spoken word, determining the pace and rhythm of how the word is pronounced.
The three structural elements of a syllable are the nucleus, the onset, and the coda.
Syllables can be structured several ways, but they always contain a nucleus, which is (usually) formed from a vowel sound. The nucleus is the core of the syllable, indicating its individual “beat” within a word; the number of syllables in a word will be determined by the number of vowel sounds forming their nuclei.
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Syllable

 

the minimal articulated unit of speech, consisting of one or several sounds that form a compact phonetic entity and that occur during one chest pulse. Proponents of various theories concerning the syllable believe that a syllable is produced by one muscular contraction, by modulation (narrowing and widening) of the pharynx, or by the degree of sonority and the order in which sounds are uttered.

A syllable is composed of a beginning (onset), a peak (nucleus), and a final part (coda). A peak is formed by simple vowels (ma-ma), by sonorants in some languages (Czech prst, “finger”), and occasionally by obstruents (psst!). A syllable’s beginning and end are formed by one or more consonants; in some languages a syllable may consist only of a peak (o-ni, “they”). Syllables are closed when they end in a consonant and open when they end in a vowel. They are uncovered when they begin with a vowel and covered when they begin with a consonant. The commonest syllable structure, found in all languages of the world, is consonant followed by vowel.

Division into syllables often does not correspond to division into morphemes. In the word ruchka (“handle”), morphemes for example, there are two syllables (ru-chka) but three morphemes (ruch-k-a). In syllabic languages, such as Chinese, morphemes are generally monosyllabic and syllable and morpheme boundaries coincide. In such languages, the beginning of a syllable is contrasted to its end, which is limited to certain permissible sounds.

V. A. VINOGRADOV

References in periodicals archive ?
We know that monomorphemic trisyllables never stress the final syllable of the word.
As for the variables syllable type and syllable weight of disyllables and trisyllables, results regard first syllable only.
1-Disyllables and trisyllables are produced, quite regularly, as acronyms, not as initialisms (as previewed by Hypothesis C and admitted by McCarthy and Prince (1995) Minimality Condition found in (1b));
However, the data on trisyllables are very scarce; and the means that were calculated on the basis of less than 5 tokens are given in parentheses.
2) The durations of the long and short vowels in trisyllables are highly comparable with the data on disyllables.
is lengthening greater after a light (CV) syllable in disyllabic words than in trisyllables and after a heavy (CVV or CVC) syllable in disyllables, as A.
Yet whereas main stress is initial in second declension pairs such as kiriku ~ kirikut in table 15, trisyllables in the fourth declension often retain a penultimate stress pattern that identifies them as loans.