S s


    • US Pronunciation
    • US IPA
    • UK Pronunciation
    • UK IPA
    • [sem-ee-vou-uh l]
    • /ˈsɛm iˌvaʊ əl/
    • /ˈse.mɪ.vaʊəl/
    • US Pronunciation
    • US IPA
    • [sem-ee-vou-uh l]
    • /ˈsɛm iˌvaʊ əl/

Definitions of semivowel word

  • noun semivowel Phonetics. a speech sound of vowel quality used as a consonant, as (w) in wet or (y) in yet. 1
  • noun semivowel a vowel-like sound that acts like a consonant, in that it serves the same function in a syllable carrying the same amount of prominence as a consonant relative to a true vowel, the nucleus of the syllable. In English and many other languages the chief semivowels are (w) in well and (j), represented as y, in yell 0
  • noun semivowel a frictionless continuant classified as one of the liquids; (l) or (r) 0
  • noun semivowel a vowel-like sound occurring in consonantal positions in the same syllable with a true vowel, characterized by brief duration and rapid change from one position of articulation to another 0

Information block about the term

Origin of semivowel

First appearance:

before 1520
One of the 28% oldest English words
1520-30; semi- + vowel; replacing semivocal < Latin sēmivocālis half vowel

Historical Comparancy

Parts of speech for Semivowel


semivowel popularity

A pretty common term. Usually people know it’s meaning, but prefer to use a more spread out synonym. About 51% of English native speakers know the meaning and use word.
According to our data most of word are more popular. This word is almost not used. It has a much more popular synonym.

semivowel usage trend in Literature

This diagram is provided by Google Ngram Viewer

Top questions with semivowel

  • what is a semivowel?

See also

Matching words

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