pal·​a·​tal | \ ˈpa-lə-tᵊl How to pronounce palatal (audio) \

Definition of palatal

1a : formed with some part of the tongue near or touching the hard palate of the roof of the mouth posterior to the ridge of bone behind the upper teeth the \sh\ and \y\ in English and the \ḵ\ of ich \iḵ\ in German are examples of palatal consonants
b of a vowel : front sense 2
2 : of, relating to, forming, or affecting the palate

Other Words from palatal

palatal noun
palatally \ ˈpa-​lə-​tᵊl-​ē How to pronounce palatal (audio) \ adverb

Examples of palatal in a Sentence

The first sound in the English word “jar” is a palatal sound.
Recent Examples on the Web In Dutch, it is pronounced Hakhar, using a palatal consonant that exists in Hebrew (though not in the name Hagar) and in Dutch. Cnaan Liphshiz,, 22 Sep. 2021 Kung-Ekoka, a musical language of nasal tones and palatal clicks. Juman Malouf, New York Times, 1 Dec. 2016

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'palatal.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of palatal

1668, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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The first known use of palatal was in 1668

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Cite this Entry

“Palatal.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Jun. 2022.

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More Definitions for palatal


pal·​a·​tal | \ ˈpal-ət-ᵊl How to pronounce palatal (audio) \

Medical Definition of palatal

: of, relating to, forming, or affecting the palate palatal itching

Other Words from palatal

palatally \ -​ᵊl-​ē How to pronounce palatal (audio) \ adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on palatal

Britannica English: Translation of palatal for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about palatal


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