Definition of cardinal vowel in English:

cardinal vowel


  • Each of a series of vowel sounds used as a standard reference point to assist in the description and classification of vowel sounds in any language.

    • ‘The links at the bottom of this section are to diagrams of acoustic data plotted onto cardinal vowel charts.’
    • ‘By ` map ’, we mean take each vowel sound and discover which of the cardinal vowels it most closely resembles.’
    • ‘An analysis is presented of the recording of the cardinal vowels made by Daniel Jones.’
    • ‘The primary and secondary cardinal vowels are often referred to by a number as well as by their symbols.’
    • ‘Leave it to the IPA to reserve the usual print glyph for ‘a’ for a cardinal vowel sound that is hardly ever used in any language.’


cardinal vowel