archiphoneme

noun

ar·​chi·​phoneme
¦ärkē,
-kə̇ + ¦-
plural -s
: a class of phonemes consisting usually of a pair sharing all distinctive features except one (as d and t share all distinctive features except that d is voiced and t is voiceless)
especially : a structurally descriptive category in which a sound may be placed when it occurs in a position where it may belong to any of two or more phonemes because of neutralization or suspension of the usual contrast between them (as German t in final position where it may correspond either to medial t or to medial d)

Word History

Etymology

International Scientific Vocabulary archi- + phoneme

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Cite this Entry

“Archiphoneme.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/archiphoneme. Accessed 9 Feb. 2023.

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