Phonetics is the subfield of linguistics that is concerned with the acoustic, articulatory, and perceptual properties of speech sounds.
The corresponding relational adjective is phonetic.
Based on the Greek phonetikos, meaning vocal. The term phonetic was first attested in English in 1826, while the use of phonetics to mean the scientific study of speech appeared in 1841.
- Harper, Douglas (2001-2010) Online Etymology Dictionary ("phonetic"). Accessed: http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?term=phonetic July 24, 2010