This tag is for questions about the sounds, intonation, and stress of how words are uttered or produced.

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2
votes
1answer
68 views

How is the word “Cactaceae” pronounced?

I was wondering how the word Cactaceae, which is the botanical taxon for the Cactus family, is pronounced. I searched for "Cactaceae pronunciation" and found the following pronunciations: ...
2
votes
0answers
22 views

Allophones of /ə/

In (non-rhotic) British English there seem to be two major allophones of the phoneme /ə/. The first which can be heard in potato, career or the weak form of from as an [ə]. However, there's also a ...
0
votes
1answer
72 views

Great Vowel Shift reversed. Is it appropriate? In what region this accent is typical? [on hold]

I have been just pointed out that Google translator's GB English speaker pronounces vowels quite differently from the language standard. I made a comparison with Lingvo Online dictionary, which has ...
18
votes
2answers
2k views

Why did the letter “o” disappear in the word “pronunciation”?

The verb pronounce has the letter o in its second syllable, but in the noun pronunciation, that same letter disappears from the corresponding position. Why is that?
41
votes
3answers
3k views

Why is Sean pronounced Shawn?

I've always had this question about the pronunciation of Sean. Is Sean a word from another language? Is it actually not pronounced Shawn and instead it's some sound between Shawn and Seen? Also, why ...
15
votes
6answers
2k views

911: nine one one vs. nine eleven [on hold]

The US emergency telephone number 911 seems to be almost always pronounced as nine one one whereas the Porsche model is typically pronounced as nine eleven One reason I can think of for ...
0
votes
0answers
21 views

What's the correct pronunciation of 'improcerous'?

The word improcerous means 'low' or 'short in stature'. How is it pronounced?
0
votes
1answer
43 views

Do you pronounce the T ending sound?

As I was taught in school and , the T ending sound of words is unvoiced and should be pronounced with air, but recently I met a friend from the US, those aired T sounds were missing from her speaking, ...
0
votes
0answers
30 views

Which word(s) are considered to be spelled the least phonetically? [closed]

Of all the dictionary words, which are considered to have a pronunciation least like their spelling? Also, slightly different question, but I believe that some English surnames can have surprising ...
1
vote
4answers
86 views

Understandable songs to learn English [closed]

I am not very good at speaking and listening English. Can someone please suggest some songs, which have clear pronunciation of English words, to listen and understand the songs too and also I can use ...
7
votes
3answers
414 views

Name for people who cannot pronounce one particular sound

Is there a word in English for the inability to utter a specific sound like the rolled R for instance? In my language, there is a name for people who can only pronounce the uvular/guttural R instead ...
3
votes
2answers
59 views

Pronunciation of “practical” and “miracle”

I just checked from the Cambridge online dictionary, I found out that written pronunciations of "practical" and "miracle" are /ˈpræk.tɪ.kəl/ and /ˈmɪr.ɪ.kl̩/ I've always thought "cal" and "cle" ...
5
votes
1answer
522 views

“PRETTY good” and “pretty GOOD”, which one is better? [closed]

Speaking-wise, the difference between [ PRETTY good ] and [ pretty GOOD ] is the stress. I wonder would it convey a different feeling when people say [It's PRETTY good] and [It's pretty GOOD]
0
votes
0answers
90 views

What are the characteristics of the late Mr Bill Bixby's voice?

I watched for the very first time in its original language the first pilot of the American TV series The Incredible Hulk (1978-1982, dir. K. Johnson, with Messrs. Bixby, Ferrigno etc.). The voice of ...
1
vote
2answers
89 views

Why a “chef” is a shef but a chair is not a shair" [closed]

I am unable to understand, why the sounds in english are not commonly spread. I looked into the IPA on google and could not understand, why the sounds change. e.g. chef vs chair.
6
votes
0answers
133 views

East Yorkshire pronunciation in the mid 20th century

I grew up in Driffield, East Yorkshire, England, in the 1950s, and I seem to remember that my older relatives spoke a variety of English far removed from the general notion of Yorkshire English. It ...
1
vote
0answers
58 views

pronunciation of PYRamid vs. pyRAMidal

This recently came up in my geometry class: why is pyramid pronounced PIR-uh-mid, while pyramidal is pronounced pi-RAM-idal? From what I can tell, they both have similar roots and etymologies, so ...
-3
votes
0answers
18 views

Which is the best English pronunciation or Text to Speech software? [migrated]

I am trying to improve my English pronunciation and I would like to know about the best solution / software available, which accepts English words / sentences as text input, and thus I can listen to ...
3
votes
2answers
110 views

Which rules define how to pronounce a consonant? [closed]

My question might appear silly and pointless to some, but I find it pretty interesting myself. If we look at the word 'circus', it has 3 consonants and 2 vowels. However, the 2 c in the words are ...
8
votes
3answers
234 views

Why does the word “coffee” have two “e’s”?

We know what coffee is and where the word comes from. Coffee was originally borrowed from: The word "coffee" entered English language in 1582 via Dutch koffie,[4] borrowed from Turkish kahve, in ...
1
vote
1answer
114 views

Why is the pronunciation of “th” in “thread” different from “python”? [closed]

I checked the pronunciation of th in thread and python in Google Translate. The sound of the th in thread is similar to t, but in python it instead sounds like s. However, in dictionaries (e.g. ...
1
vote
1answer
93 views

Why does Northern Ireland pronunciation sound similar to American?

Recently, I started watching a TV show The Fall, which takes place in Northern Ireland. Their intonations and accents are unique, but their pronunciation sounds a lot like North American English to ...
4
votes
2answers
159 views

RP English pronunciation of 'the', 'this' and so on. Diphtong /əʊ/

I'm learning, that pronunciation of words like 'that', 'this', 'the' and so on is through /ð/ consonant. And I get it. But how native speakers say words like that in everyday speech? While listening ...
-2
votes
1answer
150 views

What is the pronunciation of “ttiwdty”?

ttiwdty Not an initialism AFAIK (as far as I know) but an acronym like LASER and NATO. It's apparently trending on Urban Dictionary, although the down-votes outnumber the up-votes. It stands for The ...
21
votes
4answers
7k views

Why are 'student' and 'suspend' not pronounced as written?

I am a Chinese student beginning to learn English. I am curious to know why the word student is pronounced with the sound of d instead of t. Likewise, why is the sound of b used instead of p when ...
6
votes
2answers
857 views

The american R sound

After doing many research and find more than one result, I would like to know how exactly the R sound is pronounced in American English. On this video, the woman describes two ways. Firstly, the ...
2
votes
1answer
131 views

Why do people pronounce “f***ing” like “f***en”? [duplicate]

I'm not a native English speaker so I might not be exactly accurate with this, but whenever people (e.g. in films) say fucking, it sounds something like fucken. There's no "g" at the end and instead ...
0
votes
0answers
40 views

Regional pronunciation of “houndstooth” as “houndsooth”

I have always pronounced "houndstooth" as ˈhau̇n(d)z-ˌtüth , the exact same way I would pronounce the phrase "hound's tooth". Recently, I was told that the pronunciation should be "hound sooth", ...
0
votes
1answer
71 views

What is the phonological error pronouncing /θ/ as /s/ called?

How can I explain the error of pronunciation in the sentence I sink I'm going to bed where the word pronounced sink is actually think?
5
votes
2answers
88 views

President “Obamar”

I noticed few days ago that a CNN International anchorwoman (don't know her name) is pronouncing president Obama's name as "Obamar", with an "R" sound at the end. This is similar to certain people ...
4
votes
2answers
162 views

Where did the L in talk go?

So, this came up in the recent silent letter post in the comment section. Looking up pronunciations of talk gives things like: /tɔːk/ per oxforddictionaries.com, Google's definition page (on this ...
0
votes
1answer
55 views

Does articulation (can't you) as [kæntʃ u: siː] a bit of conversational, not official style?

I'm hearing it in songs sometimes, but I can't remember such pronunciation on English class. Is it some kind of american english or more local dialect? First 'lyrics can't you see' result from ...
1
vote
1answer
51 views

Help me understand what man says in the video

In this clip staring on about 00:21 sec, Elijah says: Yes, ... the most human of experiences. Can't understand what words is he pronouncing in the place of three dots. Pleas, help me, I really ...
1
vote
1answer
81 views

How to pronounce Louisville?

How would I phonetically spell the way locals pronounce Louisville? (Louisville, KY)
1
vote
1answer
74 views

Pronouncing Methane

The first “e” in methane is pronounced like the “e” in metal in the US but it is pronounced like the “e” in me in the UK. I asked a friend how this difference in pronunciation came about. She ...
0
votes
3answers
66 views

Pronunciation of “I'd like” and “You've got”

I am not a native speaker so i wanted to ask this. When you say "You've gotta be careful" do you pronounce 'have' part and when you say "I'd like to..." do you say 'would' part?
1
vote
1answer
72 views

Pronunciation of 'Con' words

Is there any rule for the pronunciation of 'Con' words like : Constant, Constraint, Constitute, Constituent etc. My confusion is with these sounds 'kɒn' and 'kən'. For Constiuent it is ...
0
votes
1answer
68 views

“P-U-L-L” vs. “P-U-double L”

I have heard some people spell double letters individually, e.g. "B-B", "C-C", or "D-D". But I have also heard others use the word double instead. Is there any dialectical preference? Is there any ...
2
votes
1answer
105 views

Where in the U.S. do people change the stress of umbrella, adult and TV to the first syllable?

Is it just a small percentage of the population in that region who stress the first syllable, or is it widespread? In other words, if I visit such region will I find almost everyone talking like that ...
2
votes
3answers
317 views

Why do some people say “v” as “w”?

I've noticed that Germans and Indians will sometimes say "/w/ector space" instead of "/v/ector space". I get that in German "w" is pronounced /v/. But "vau" (German "v") is pronounced like /f/. So ...
1
vote
2answers
67 views

Should /l/ sound be always pronounced completely?

Normally, your tongue should touch the roof of your mouth when you pronounce the /l/ sound. The light /l/ sound and some of the dark /l/ sound, such as 'look', 'cancel', can be pronounced easily. But ...
0
votes
3answers
61 views

How are you supposed to pronounce “Fragile” [closed]

I usually say "Frah JI all" Some people say "Frah jell" Which way do you pronounce it? Which is the correct way?
14
votes
5answers
1k views

How do Torontonians pronounce the name of their hometown?

Toronto - The capital and largest city of Ontario, Canada, in the southern part of the province on Lake Ontario. [tə-ˈrän-(ˌ)tō, -ˈrän-tə] — Merriam-Webster [tuh-ron-toh] — Reference.com ...
4
votes
1answer
119 views

Difference between word-final iː, i and ɪ

As we know, English usually contrasts the two high front vowels /i:/ and /ɪ/, and many different minimal pairs exist for this (e.g. /sli:p/ vs /slɪp/). However, at the end of a word, we usually have ...
-1
votes
2answers
67 views

How to spell the word 'trie'? [closed]

In computer science, there is a word trie. It is pronounced either /tri:/ or /trai/. However, according to the common spelling rule, "When two vowels go walking, the first one does the talking", the ...
1
vote
2answers
79 views

Why does child sometimes become a two-syllable word?

I have noticed, mostly in American English, that people sometimes say "child" as a two syllable word : Chi-ald. I wish i could represent this using phonetic symbols, but I'm bad at that, so please ...
1
vote
1answer
29 views

Accent on second syllable for “preference”

Dictionaries say that the word "preference" has got the accent on the first syllable. In a film the actor Jonny Lee Miller pronounced it with accent on the second syllable. It was not the first time ...
1
vote
1answer
76 views

How can I improve my pronunciation? [closed]

I've left high school and we don't study English at University and I feel that I haven't learnt to pronounce at all yet. What habits or routines can I do to speak better and fluent? Thank you so ...
1
vote
2answers
169 views

How do I pronounce the name “Aurelius”?

I was reading a book out-loud and came across this name. At the time, I pronounced it Aurelius: ur-ell-ee-us The more I think about it, the more I'm sure it is not correct. The word Aura would ...
0
votes
1answer
51 views

How is “viz.” pronounced?

How does one read out “viz.”? “Namely”, “to wit”, or something else entirely?