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

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11
votes
5answers
4k views

Why are almost all vowels pronounced “i” in New Zealand English?

One thing I always notice when I'm hearing Kiwis speaking English is the fact that almost every vowel turns into /ɪ/. Here's a video which illustrates the point (listen to them when they speak ...
1
vote
1answer
169 views

a flap in “wedding” and “bidding”

I'm wondering if a flap occurs in "wedding", and "bidding" in American pronunciation? I can't hear it out here: http://www.macmillandictionary.com/dictionary/american/wedding
0
votes
0answers
24 views

weak and strong pronunciation of 'until' and 'because'

We have the weak /ənˈtɪl/ and strong /ʌnˈtɪl/ pronunciation of until and /bɪˈkəz/ - /bɪˈkɒz/ for because. Could somebody give me some examples of sentences where we would use each? For example, if I ...
0
votes
1answer
48 views

Isn't it the stress shown as h? [on hold]

Like in ee-koh-ly in E-coli? Don't we have to stress the 'co' sound? I asked a question on how to pronounce some brands, and someone told me that... but, in this pronunciation of 'elastomer' ...
1
vote
2answers
342 views

Why can't I pronounce the ŋ sound? (native English speaker)

I was wondering why it is that I'm unable to pronounce this sound. Apparently, the reason why I pronounce the words "seen" and "sing" the exact same way (as well as "long" and "lawn", "dean" and ...
3
votes
3answers
152 views

the weak form of 'on'

I am confused at whether or not there is a weak form at preposition's 'ON'. I've checked at some dictionaries at Cambridge and Oxford dictionary, they don't mention on the weak form's pronunciation. ...
0
votes
0answers
18 views

Should I use commas to delimit a clause that starts with “related to”

I have the following comment in my programming code: pop and store data related to nested objects from validated_data I wonder, should the related to nested objects clause be surrounded by ...
0
votes
1answer
147 views

Is there any word in English that has the vowel “o” stands alone without any other vowel standing next to it?

See this picture (Source) See the vowel "o" I couldn't find any word in English dictionary that has vowel "o" stands alone without any other vowel standing next to it. Let say, I can see /ɡoʊ/ ...
0
votes
1answer
28 views

Topics: “leisure” and the “Holocaust” discussed with differing pronunciations. [on hold]

The radio topic is leisure. The interviewee, pronounces the word to rhyme with pleasure, [leh-zhure] The interviewer pronounces the word as it is usually pronounced in the U.S., [lee-zhure] Last ...
2
votes
1answer
52 views

Inability to pronounce certain variation of the letter “T” in a word

I have a problem where in I am unable to pronounce certain words which has the letter "T" correctly. Is there a term that defines this problem. It would help me in my future conversations with people ...
1
vote
3answers
464 views

Why do “bomb” and “tomb” have different pronunciations?

For example, "womb" comes from old English, whereas "bomb" and "tomb" come from old French. I'm not sure what import etymology has on pronounciation, but I was just wondering if there is any reason in ...
5
votes
2answers
8k views

A British pronunciation issue

Most dictionaries list the pronunciation of issue as /ˈɪʃuː/ (ĭsho͞o) in American English and /ˈɪs.juː/ (ĭsyo͞o) possibly alongside /ˈɪʃjuː/ (ĭshyo͞o) and /ˈɪʃuː/ in British English. One informal ...
3
votes
1answer
64 views

Are some accents/dialects incorrect

I may not be incorrect in my knowledge about speech, but Dialects or accents that drop sounds from words, syllables from words, or just completely change the sound from words are they correct? I see ...
1
vote
1answer
42 views

Is there a correct pronunciation for the word “idempotent”?

In mathematics, we like talking about idempotent matrices. In a masters program that I am currently enrolled in, I have heard one professor pronounce it one way, and another professor pronounce it ...
3
votes
2answers
157 views

How to pronounce 'almond' in American English

I cannot count how many times I was told and/or made fun of my allegedly incorrect pronunciation of almond. Every single one of my attempted pronunciations has been 'corrected'; even the so-called ...
2
votes
2answers
1k views

Why is the “a” in “have” a short a sound?

As far as I'm aware, every word of the form consonant-a-v-e has a long a sound - cave, Dave, fave, gave, lave, nave, pave, rave, save and wave - every word except have. What is the story behind this ...
2
votes
3answers
854 views

How to pronounce miracle?

I ask this because I recently had a debate with my family about how to pronounce this word, miracle. They said it was pronounced with the "mir" in miracle the same way "mir" is in mirror. ...
7
votes
5answers
5k views

How to pronounce LINQ?

How to pronounce LINQ? Or should I just say L-I-N-Q? (LINQ is a .NET extension for queries.)
0
votes
2answers
1k views

How To Pronounce “IFRS”? [on hold]

How to pronounce "IFRS," International Financial Reporting Standards? Anybody knows its phonetic symbols with IPA symbols?
7
votes
3answers
4k views

How do “you” pronounce eczema?

/ˈɛɡzɪmə/, /ˈɛksɪmə/, /ˈɛksmə/ As I no longer live in the UK I don't usually hear how eczema is pronounced, so I've always pronounced it as ig-zee-muh but recently my English boyfriend told me that ...
3
votes
2answers
65 views

Pronunciation of /ə/ followed by /r/ in words such as “history”, “accelerate”, “memorize”, etc.

For the word "history", every dictionary that I have consulted gives the pronunciation as /ˈhɪs tə ri/. However, my personal pronunciation of the word has always been /ˈhɪs tər i/, and for me this ...
0
votes
1answer
57 views

How are the names Pedro and Alain pronounced? [closed]

The pronunciation guide I saw gave Pedro as pā′thrō (with the th underlined) and Alain  as ȧlan. How should I understand these guides?
3
votes
5answers
4k views

No coffee, no workee - meaning

No coffee, no workee What does that expression exactly mean? And how do you pronounce it?
0
votes
1answer
48 views

Should I pronounce is ksenia or zenia?

Xenia is from what I understand a directly borrowed word from Greek. It didn't come through french first or anything, so I see no reason to pronounce is 'z'enia. Why not pronounce as it would be ...
2
votes
1answer
51 views

Is there a connection between the words “illicit” and “elicit”?

The words "illicit" and "elicit" seem to be spelled and pronounced similarly, although their meanings appear different. Is this a coincidence or is there a connection between the two words?
2
votes
2answers
64 views

“Kweh-ree” vs. “ Kwee-ree”: which is the more common pronunciation of “query”?

I just watched the Vsauce video "The net is not the web" and heard Michael saying query as kweh-ree. That surprised me since I've always said kwee-ree. So I looked this up on Wiktionary and it seems ...
0
votes
1answer
44 views

Pronounciation of “nominal” in American English

I heard the term "nominal" pronounced by a native speaker of American English and I realised that it was different from the usual British pronounciation. I checked in online dictionaries and I ...
2
votes
1answer
55 views

How to pronounce the names of supersymmetric partner particles of fermions

The names of supersymmetric partner particles of fermions are formed by s- + the name of the normal particle. E.g.: sparticle sfermion squark sup sdown scharm sstrange stop sbottom slepton ...
29
votes
4answers
4k views

Why are Leicester & co pronounced as they are?

What is the origin of the pronunciation of words like Leicester, Gloucester, Worcestershire? Presumably, the spelling predates the pronunciation but what is the history here? What language do the ...
1
vote
0answers
45 views

origin of the word “Persia”? [closed]

I did some search but only found the following about the origin of the word "Persia" - from Latin Persia "Persia," from Greek Persis, from Old Persian Parsa (cf. Persian Fars, Hebrew Paras, Arabic ...
3
votes
1answer
468 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: ...
-1
votes
1answer
51 views

Why are there silent letters? [duplicate]

Why do we put letters in some words which are silent in pronunciation? If they make no sound then why we waste space in words? For example: "Knife"; 'K' is silent "Doubt"; 'b' is silent etc.
11
votes
10answers
5k views

How to pronounce GUID [closed]

How do you pronounce "GUID?" Is it one syllable or two?
6
votes
2answers
338 views

Should I pronounce little as ['lit(ə)l] or ['lid(ə)l]

I guess some people may give a down-vote to my silly question, but I still want to make it clear, at least for myself. Since English is not my first language, I watch a lot of online videos learn the ...
29
votes
4answers
53k views

Why are there two pronunciations for “either”?

A few weeks ago, I had a conversation with an individual who told me that pronouncing the word "either" is wrong when pronounced like \ˈī-thər\ instead of \ˈē-thər\ , but I didn't argue the point ...
4
votes
1answer
136 views

Shakespeare's Scansion: the Sequel

Okay, so we seem to have established (with lots of great and generous help from StoneyB and Peter Shor) that: where it came to certain diphthongs, Shakespeare either elided syllables that didn't ...
2
votes
1answer
70 views

'café' pronunciation

I've found recently a second variant of pronunciation of 'cafe' word: http://www.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/english/cafe. The usual one is /ˈkafeɪ/ ˈkæ-'fay But the OD link gives this too: ...
0
votes
1answer
126 views

How to correct/improve 's-' pronunciation at the beginning of a sentence?

As a native Spanish speaker, I tend to mispronounce some letters or words in English. One of them is the 's' sound at the beginning of a word, for example, I pronounce: 'slang' as /eslaŋ/ instead of ...
0
votes
1answer
75 views

Pronounciation of “string”

According to Wiki "string" is pronounced as /stɹɪŋ/. However, all of my acquaintances have split opinions about the 'g' at the end. I'm of a mind that the 'g' is pronounced, e.g. two strings, not two ...
2
votes
3answers
519 views

Why the extra syllable in words like these ending in -r and -l?

First-off, I'm not a native speaker. I've noticed that a lot of words ending in -r and -l are pronounced as if they had an extra syllable. Especially when they have a -ee- or -ai- sound. Consider ...
6
votes
3answers
6k views

Is it acceptable in American English to pronounce “grocery” as “groshery”?

I caught myself pronouncing the "c" in "grocery" as an "sh" sound. Is this commonplace/accepted, or is it perhaps geographic? Does this occur with "c" in other words? As background, I was raised in ...
1
vote
1answer
68 views

Pronunciation of the word “helmet”

Which pronunciation is correct? If both, which one is used more commonly? /ˈhelmɪt/ or /ˈhelmət/
6
votes
1answer
136 views

Letter 'Z' pronounced as 'Izzard' : how widespread and where?

I read at Which is the correct way to refer to the letter "Z" — "Zee" or "Zed"? that the letter Z is pronounced : 'Izzard' (/ˈɪzərd/) in Scottish English. as ...
2
votes
2answers
133 views

What is the origin of the word “What”?

Where does the word what come from? Why do we say wot when it's spelt the way it is?
1
vote
1answer
83 views

Why is the word “Cyrillic” pronounced with a soft “c”?

Why is the word "Cyrillic" pronounced with a soft "c" at the start of the word, when the pronunciation of the word in Russian and Mongolian sounds more like a hard "c"?
0
votes
0answers
43 views

Pronouncing the letter z [duplicate]

The letter z is often pronounced as zee. How do we know when to pronounce z as zed or zee ?
2
votes
1answer
51 views

Self conscious when pronouncing “R's”

I remember taking special reading classes in 5th and 6th grade for this, but basically I have trouble pronouncing words that use the letter 'r'. I don't really know why this is as I am fine with all ...
6
votes
3answers
773 views

Exercises for pronouncing the r

I'm a dutch programmer working in a international team where English is the main language. In my native language I have pretty decent articulation. However, when speaking English I have a lot of ...
1
vote
1answer
66 views

Why /t/ after /k/ sometimes is pronounced like a mild aspirated T but sometimes is pronounced like unaspirated T?

See this word: doctor /ˈdɑːktər/, the /t/ in this case seems to be like a mild aspirated T (that is there may have a bit air coming out of your mouth) Source. But expected /ɪkˈspektɪd/, the /t/ in ...