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Christophe Grandsire wrote:
>En réponse à John Cowan <[log in to unmask]>:
>
>>   I believe this is also Mandarin /r/.
>
>I'd been told that Mandarin /r/ was the best example of a retroflex
>approximant: [r\`]? It is not retroflex?

Perhaps there is considerable dialectal variance within Mandarin regarding
this? I checked two (Swedish) encyclopaedias, one of which consistently
renders the Mandarin "r" as [Z], while the other equally consistently
renders it as [r] (presumeably indicating a trilled retroflex or alveolar r,
but the phonetic transcription used is quite broad).

                                                      Andreas

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