3.3.2 nasale diphthonges

In the case of a diphtong two vowels are pronounced in one syllable. Low, row for instance are diphtongs. (The fact that they are written ow, in other words with a consonant, is irrelevant. They are pronounced with a dark o to which a u as a semivowel is attached.)

The second vowel is only insinuated. A nasale diphtong is therefore a nasale vowel preceded or followed by an orale semivowel. The full vowel can be in the first or the second position. If it stays on the first position, it is an ascending diphtong, it if stays at the second position, it is a descending diphtong. (Obviously these terms are completely irrelevant from a practical point of view.)

There are 4 descending and 2 ascending diphthongs. The following list shows them all.


IPA presentation graphem example meaning sound
descending nasale dipthonges
[ɐ̃w ]ampagam they pay
[ɐ̃j]empodem they can
[ẽw]ão cão dog
[õj]õeaviões airplane
[ũj]ũimuito much, very
ascending nasale diphtonges
[wɐ̃ ]uanquando when
[wẽ]uen quente warm




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