Language and cluster-specific effects in the timing of onset consonant sequences in seven languages

Marianne Pouplier*, Manfred Pastätter, Philip Hoole, Stefania Marin, Ioana Chitoran, Tomas O. Lentz, Alexei Kochetov

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)
7 Downloads (Pure)


In this paper, we draw on available data from previous experiments to explore cross-linguistic variation in articu-
latory overlap in CC onset clusters, taking into account the role of cluster composition. Our sample includes artic-
ulography recordings of eleven clusters for seven languages. We find that cross-linguistic variability is conditional
on cluster composition. Previous suggestions that languages may have individual global articulatory timing profiles for consonant clusters in terms of an overall relatively lower or higher degree of overlap are not confirmed for our sample. All included languages converge on a relatively higher degree of overlap for some of the clusters, whereas only some of the languages additionally extend into the lower overlap range, particularly for stop-sonorant sequences. Manner and voicing are further identified as factors conditioning variation in consonantal overlap. Overall languages differ in their degree of overlap in multi-faceted ways, but the relative effects of cluster composition work in the same direction across languages.
Original languageEnglish
Article number101153
JournalJournal of Phonetics
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2022


  • Articulatory timing
  • Consonant clusters
  • Overlap
  • Phonotactics
  • Sibilants


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