Definition of alveolar in English:


Pronunciation /alˈvɪələ//ˌalvɪˈəʊlə/


  • 1Relating to an alveolus or the alveoli of the lung or lungs.

    • ‘Note that it is the amount of carbon dioxide in alveolar air in the lungs that has to be measured in evaluating the state of health.’
    • ‘To quantify the alveolar injuries, we measured radial alveolar count in lung tissue at each time point.’
    • ‘This growth factor is abundantly expressed in many different lung cells, including alveolar macrophages and type II cells.’
    • ‘Alveolar number was closely related to total lung volume whereas alveolar size was not.’
  • 2Relating to or denoting the bony ridge that contains the sockets of the upper teeth.

    • ‘Children with cleft palates often have an alveolar ridge defect.’
    • ‘It is done by means of fixed or removable appliances that gently move the teeth and supporting alveolar bone until they are in the desired position.’
    • ‘The alveolar region is the location of tooth attachment.’
    • ‘The tooth roots are attached to the surrounding alveolar bone of the tooth socket.’
    • ‘They occur almost exclusively along the alveolar ridge of the maxilla in white female newborns.’
    1. 2.1Phonetics (of a consonant) pronounced with the tip of the tongue on or near the alveolar ridge (e.g. n, s, d, t)
      ‘voiced and voiceless alveolar stops’
      • ‘It shows that the lower a person's social status, the more likely he or she is to use a higher percentage of alveolar rather than velar nasal endings.’
      • ‘Some years ago it was pointed out to me that when I'm trying to be very precise in talking about linguistics, I use dental rather than alveolar articulations for consonants.’
      • ‘It must be rigid enough to promote near zero surface tensions during the alveolar compression.’
      • ‘Hebrew and Arabic use dentalized t, d, th, etc., while English makes the sounds farther back at the alveolar ridge.’


  • An alveolar consonant.

    ‘boundaries between alveolars and palatals’
    • ‘Both the /s/ and /z/ sounds are alveolars, articulated in the same place in the vocal cavity’
    • ‘Given that both soft and hard alveolars (‘t’ and ‘d') are used in Punjabi, their representation in the new script would constitute the most baffling problem.’
    • ‘The bare letters's', 't', 'n', 'l', etc. cannot be assumed to specifically represent alveolars.’