Transcribing a Frontal Lisp

By Pam Marshalla

Q: How do you transcribe a frontal lisp?

There are many ways to designate a frontal lisp–

  • Some therapists do like to write it as Th/S (using IPA symbols, of course.)
  • Some place a right-facing arrow under the phoneme, to indicate that the tongue is protruding forward.
  • Some draw a circle between a downward-facing caret and an upward-facing caret, indicating the tongue is between the upper and lower teeth.
  • Some simply write D for distorted, but I think that is the lamest of all because it doesn’t tell you anything about how it is distorted.
  • The IPA diacritic is a three-sided box indicating the teeth.  The open end faces down. Your basic phonetics text should have this last one.

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