Definition of cacuminal in English:



  • another term for retroflex
    • ‘A similar abundance prevails in respect of all the four retroflex and cacuminal plosives, ` t ’, ` th ’, ` d', ` dh ’, as well as the retroflex plosive nasal, ` n ’, whose sounds are identical with those of the five dental, alveolar and nasal plosives, ` t ’, ` th ’, ` d', ` dh’ and ` n ’, that follow in the Devanagari alphabet.’
    • ‘Her cacuminal speech prods the back of my neck, my face turned to a corner, wedged, stiff, stuck fast, lodged within the confines of her retroflexed monologue - this verse is addressed to both myself and the boy (who keeps slapping blackboard grime like muddy shoes).’
    • ‘The linguist, who has published an Italian-Sicilian Dictionary, also maintains that Sicilian is not neo-Latin, and cites the fact that it has only the three vowels ‘a’, ‘i’, and ‘u’, and has a number of cacuminal consonants.’


Mid 19th century: from Latin cacuminare make pointed (from cacumen, cacumin- top, summit) + -al.