English Language & Usage Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for linguists, etymologists, and serious English language enthusiasts. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I'm trying to find a list of something like this:


etc. Basically, they would be pronounceable and are often used to make up words. I think there is a term for this. Like 'ph' can be made in to 'phone'. 'Ch' can be made in to 'Check'.

share|improve this question
Consonant Digraphs – Kris Dec 17 '12 at 7:06
google.com/… – Kris Dec 17 '12 at 7:10
up vote 9 down vote accepted

They're called digraphs -- consonant digraphs in your specific case.

share|improve this answer
is 'sch' (pronounced still as a single sound) still called a digraph or a trigraph? (e.g. in Schadenfreude) – SF. Dec 17 '12 at 8:46
@SF. Trigraphs chr, dge, tch, ... Polygraph Test: phonicsontheweb.com/digraphs.php ;) – Kris Dec 17 '12 at 9:57

Ch and ph would be digraphs, but sk would be a blend. The distinction depends on whether or not the two letters create an entirely new sound (the way "ph" makes the "f" sound, as in phonics), or if they blend together, retaining their root sound (like the "gr" in grape).

Therefore, the word blend has two blends, but the word digraph has a blend and a digraph.

Kn or ck (as in knock) are a bit unique, in that one of the two letters is silent. Nonethless, these are still considered to be consonant digraphs.

share|improve this answer
In elementary school, in the 1970s, they were called "consonant clusters", but I'd imagine that "digraph" is a more technically correct term that our teachers didn't think were were ready for. – TecBrat Dec 18 '12 at 10:44

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.