Raised vowel

A raised vowel is a vowel sound in which the body of the tongue is raised upward and backward toward the dorsum (soft palate). The most raised cardinal vowels are [u ɯ]; also quite raised are [ʊ], [o ɤ] and [ʉ ɨ].

Raised vowels and retracted vowels constitute the traditional but articulatorily-inaccurate category of back vowels, but they also cover most of the central vowels.