from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A consonant, such as f or s in English, produced by the forcing of breath through a constricted passage. Also called spirant.
  • adj. Of, relating to, or being a fricative consonant.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Any of several sounds produced by air flowing through a constriction in the oral cavity and typically producing a sibilant, hissing, or buzzing quality; a fricative consonant. English /f/ and /s/ are fricatives.
  • adj. produced by air flowing through a restriction in the oral cavity.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Produced by the friction or rustling of the breath, intonated or unintonated, through a narrow opening between two of the mouth organs; uttered through a close approach, but not with a complete closure, of the organs of articulation, and hence capable of being continued or prolonged; -- said of certain consonantal sounds, as f, v, s, z, etc.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Characterized by friction: said of those alphabetic sounds in which the conspicuous element is a rustling of the breath through a partly opened position of the organs, as s and sh, z and zh, f and v, th and Ŧh, and so on. They are sometimes divided into subclasses, as sibilants, like s and sh, and spirants, like f and verb
  • Sounded by friction, as certain musical instruments. See instrument, 3 .
  • n. A fricative consonant. See I., 1.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a continuant consonant produced by breath moving against a narrowing of the vocal tract
  • adj. of speech sounds produced by forcing air through a constricted passage (as `f', `s', `z', or `th' in both `thin' and `then')


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

New Latin fricātīvus, from Latin fricātus, past participle of fricāre, to rub.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

New Latin fricativus, from Classical Latin fricāre, present active infinitive of fricō ("I rub").


  • Now, considering the post you linked to regarding the potential phonetic realization of Minoan "d" and "z": would that man that "z" as a fricative is a "th" sound?

    A Pre-Greek name for Odysseus

  • With all the grace on offer, you quibble at the absence of the word "fricative"? THE AMBIENCE OF WORDS.

  • I never noticed that "fricative" sounded close to a bad word, though, until I said it to my dad and he acted shocked. CLITICS.

  • Similarly, "fricative" consonants are soft-sounding like the "f" in "five" and convey a sense of smallness, he says, while Music briefs

  • It's safest for this magazine's sanity if I substitute the words "chuffing" and "todd" for the concomitant seven- and four-letter words Bruce quietly drops everywhere, through habit rather than guile or anger; fricative and plosive, they're actually right in almost all contexts.

    Bruce Robinson: 'I'm just going to take my liver for a wash'

  • Yes, it's about a complete cessation of airflow with a sudden release -- a 'plosive' -- rather than a restriction causing 'fricative' turbulence.

    Bukiet on Brooklyn Books

  • The S is substituted there with an English H or the velar fricative that in Spanish is nowadays a J in many occasions.

    7 The Journey Back « Unknowing

  • But a Spanish J is not the equivalent of a Y, it is a velar fricative.

    Gallstones of the Unexamined Life « Unknowing

  • Two phonemes: a voiced dental fricative and a schwa.

    Notes on Notes

  • Yes, it makes Sean Kingston's Beautiful Girls look like Sad-Eyed Lady of the Lowlands, but Mohombi isn't about furrowing brows, he's about fun with a capital bilabial fricative.

    Mohombi (No 845)


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