Near-open front unrounded vowel

The near-open front unrounded vowel, or near-low front unrounded vowel,[1] is a type of vowel sound, used in some spoken languages. The symbol in the International Phonetic Alphabet that represents this sound is æ, a lowercase of the Æ ligature. Both the symbol and the sound are commonly referred to as "ash".

Near-open front unrounded vowel
IPA Number325
Entity (decimal)æ
Unicode (hex)U+00E6
Audio sample

The rounded counterpart of [æ], the near-open front rounded vowel (for which the IPA provides no separate symbol) has been reported to occur allophonically in Danish;[2][3] see open front rounded vowel for more information.

In practice, æ is sometimes used to represent the open front unrounded vowel; see the introduction to that page for more information.

In IPA transcriptions of Hungarian and Valencian, this vowel is typically written with ɛ.