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

learn more… | top users | synonyms (2)

0
votes
2answers
50 views

“Potential” pronunciation

I was raised to pronounce "potential" with a long o (ō). This makes sense where the syllables are divided. Yet, the online dictionaries I have checked say it is "puh". Can you comment?
2
votes
1answer
131 views

Pronunciation of anonymize

I “googled” the word anonymize to verify its spelling because it is not in the Chrome’s dictionary. Before I closed the tab, on a whim, I clicked the little speaker icon to hear Google’s pronunciation ...
4
votes
1answer
120 views

Why are there no English nouns starting with “th” pronounced as /ð/?

I just saw a claim that there are no nouns in English that start with "th" pronounced as /ð/, and I am convinced that is correct for at least Received Pronunciation, General American and Australian ...
8
votes
3answers
2k views

Are actors taught to roll their “r”'s?

A particularly prominent example of a rolled r user is the actor Jeremy Brett, who played "Sherlock Holmes" in the 1980s Granada adaptations. I've noticed that several other actors, especially from ...
1
vote
1answer
240 views

Pronunciation of “thank” using ð (voiced th) instead of θ (unvoiced th)

Both my younger siblings pronounce "thank" using ð, voicing the "th". I have never heard any other native speaker pronounce it this way. Both my parents, my older sibling, and I all pronounce "thank" ...
-1
votes
2answers
58 views

How do you pronounce Calvin in British English

How do the British pronounce the 'a' between c and l? Is it like 'callous' or 'call'?
1
vote
5answers
7k views

How do you pronounce 'vegan'?

Theoretically, there are four possible pronunciations of 'vegan' due to two syllables constituting this word, namely, 've'('vee' or 'vay'?) and 'gan'('gun' or 'gen' as in 'generate'?). The online ...
-1
votes
1answer
58 views

English pronunciation of the letter “a” [closed]

I heard the letter a was pronounced /ei/, and sometimes it was pronounced as /ə/. So, can you tell me when is it pronounced as /ei/, and when as /ə/?
14
votes
2answers
2k views

Why isn't “muscle” pronounced “muskle”?

It comes from the Latin musculus (meaning mouse) and Latin has only hard c's. The "c" has somehow become soft or silent during evolution. Why did this happen? Also, if muscle is pronounced mussle, ...
1
vote
4answers
233 views

What's the name for when a word changes its pronunciation because of how people read?

With greater literacy in the past 100 years, most English speakers are also proficient at writing. Sometimes due to the great divide between English spellings and the true pronunciation, people will ...
0
votes
2answers
2k views

Is there a rule for how to pronounce words such as “dance”, “prance”, “castle”?

Is there a grammatical rule for the pronunciation of words such as dance, castle and prance? I believe the British English pronunciation is "ah", while in American English it is a short "a" sound.
4
votes
3answers
701 views

Any example of when one would pronounce the word “a” with a long A sound?

I am trying to think of any example when one might be correct in pronouncing the word "a" with a long A sound. With the word "the," one would use the long E sound only when the word is followed by a ...
4
votes
4answers
257 views

Adding an L when appending an -ium suffix to a word? (Metallium vs. Metalium)

I am Romanizing a business name from Hebrew, and am wondering what the most appealing or 'correct' spelling might be - Metallium or Metalium. The owners of the business went with the latter, but my ...
2
votes
4answers
110 views

How do you say 7/7?

We have several service agreements, but we're not sure how you actually say 7/7. A 7/7 service agreement means support every day (even weekends), during business hours. Do you just call it ...
0
votes
0answers
4 views

How can i pronounce letter 'a' correctly? [migrated]

I've read different questions about pronouncing 'a' like this : Sounds of the letter a In my native tongue-Arabic- there are 3 degrees of pronouncing 'a' -degree one is like -able -degree two is like ...
9
votes
6answers
1k views

What is the name of the phoneme produced in an upper-class Briton's pronunciation of the word “Duke”? What's different in the articulation?

When someone with a Received Pronunciation accent pronounces the word duke, as in The Duke of York, he doesn't pronounce it with a "hard" 'd', as one might pronounce the word duh, but a softer type ...
6
votes
3answers
797 views

Explanation and rules for adding and subtracting 'r's in British pronunciation?

For example, the sentence, "The Premier of China drank vodka and beer in his car with Obama." A BBC presenter would pronounce it like: The Premieh of Chiner drank vodker and bee'h in his ca' with ...
14
votes
4answers
11k views

Why is “women” pronounced the way it is?

As far as I know, it is the only word where wo is pronounced as wee. What is the reason for this? Does it have to do with the origin of the word?
2
votes
1answer
165 views

Is there a formal spelling for the English letter names?

The English alphabet has a common pronunciation. For example, B is pronounced as "Bee", C as "See" and I as Aye. Is there a formal spelling for the letter names?
2
votes
1answer
72 views

How do I know where to place the stress?

In questions that start with interrogative pronouns such as: what, when, and why, should they be stressed? For example, is the word "time" stressed in the sentence? Is "What" stressed, too? What ...
1
vote
1answer
52 views

how to read numbers of 6 digit in formal english

How to say these two numbers: 112177 eleven hundrends thousands and twenty one hundren and seventy seven one hundred and twelve thousands and one hundred seventy seven the same for this number ...
1
vote
1answer
56 views

Choose a username is easy to remember and pronounce [closed]

English is not my mother tongue language. But I am trying to pick a good internet user name for my new career life in America. And I read a lot of "How to Naming" article but still have no idea. I ...
20
votes
5answers
3k views

New Zealand pronunciation of “women” vs “woman”

I have read in a number of places that the NZ pronunciation of "women" must be rather peculiar. Quoting from just one such place: For some years I've noted the tendency of Kiwis to pronounce ...
82
votes
27answers
7k views

How to read “E = (mc)²” so as not to mistake for “E = mc²”

According to one of the questions already asked on EL&U, “E = mc²” is read as E equals M C squared. How do we read “E = (mc)²” so that it is not mistaken for “E = mc²”?
8
votes
4answers
946 views

How to read “and/or” aloud

Is this read as and or or? Because it doesn't sound right while speaking aloud. Or is there some other way you can say it?
0
votes
3answers
3k views

Pronunciation of “SUS” in “Stainless Steel SUS 304”

How do engineers and the like who are native speakers of English pronounce “SUS” (stainless steel)? Like the verb “suss”? Like “SOS” (mayday) but with “U”?
0
votes
1answer
94 views

When do and don't we link 2 adjacent words in pronunciation?

Please see this sentence "Do you like eating fruits?". If we stress the iː in "eating", then do we link k to iː so that it can become ..../laɪ'kiːtɪŋ/....? I guess that we don't link k to iː, but we ...
2
votes
3answers
164 views

Pronunciation of: I want a refund

I noticed in a TV show that the phrase "I want a refund" is pronounced like [I wanna refund]. I think the /t/ is dropped and /n/ is blended into the vowel. But how do Americans differentiate between ...
0
votes
1answer
60 views

Why do people write “Hellooo” instead of “Heeello” to show a prolonged sound? [closed]

I'm not a native English speaker, so I don't know what to search for on Google and similar. In chats I often read words like 'helloooo', or 'sureeee'. And as I understood it, it's meant to mimic the ...
1
vote
4answers
5k views

Why are “put” and “but” different in their pronunciation?

"Put" and "but" both end in the same letters, so why don't they rhyme? Did they start out with the same sound, and then one of them changed? Or did they start out with different sounds, and just got ...
-1
votes
0answers
473 views

Why there is difference in pronunciation of words PUT and CUT? [duplicate]

I always wonder why the words Put and Cut are pronounced differently.
5
votes
2answers
94 views

Pronunciation of -ar in Madagascar

In the movie by the same name, the characters pronounce Madagascar, /mædəɡæskɑɹ/. However, dictionaries only list the pronunciation /mædəɡæskəɹ/. Just as peculiarly, many pronounce templar as ...
1
vote
1answer
87 views

Why is /e/ generally transcribed as 'ay'?

I’ve seen pretty often in phonetic transcriptions for English speakers who weren’t familiar with the IPA the phoneme /e/ or /ɛ/ transcribed as ay: Here "lejos" (/'le.xos/) is transcribed as ...
2
votes
1answer
34 views

Text for exhibiting different pronunciations

I'm looking for a text that can be used to showcase various differences in pronunciation across English accents. For example, it could include examples of the various splits/mergers (Mary/merry/mary, ...
6
votes
13answers
2k views

Does Santy (Santa) exist outside Ireland?

It's common at this time of year for adults to ask small children What's Santy bringing you? (awkward as this is for those of us who don't celebrate Christmas). Is this pronunciation of Santa unique ...
3
votes
2answers
133 views

In Jamaican English, why is there no θ sound?

For example, three is pronounced as "tree," and thing is pronounced as "ting." How come Jamaicans do not have a θ sound in their accents?
5
votes
3answers
392 views

'Sag' and 'slant': Is the vowel /æ/ the same in both words?

/sæg/ /slænt/ Transcriptions from Cambridge American English Dictionary Both the words' IPA transcriptions have an /æ/ symbol. Do those two /æ/s sound the same? Are they both short or ...
6
votes
2answers
310 views

Are there rules for pronunciation of words ending in “-ton”?

Here are 4 words ending in "_ton": Proton - /ˈprəʊ.tɒn/ Cotton - /ˈkɑt.n̩/ Mutton - /ˈmʌtn̩/ Wanton - /ˈwɒntən/ Even though the words end in -ton, the pronunciation varies. ...
5
votes
2answers
2k views

Are the different pronunciations of “species” regional differences?

As far as I know, the word "species" can pronounced either as spee-sheez or as spee-seez. I understand that neither of these is incorrect: they're just two different ways to say the same thing. I also ...
1
vote
1answer
414 views

Why are the first syllables of “nature” and “natural” pronounced differently?

The two words nature and natural have the radical, why are they pronounced differently?
2
votes
4answers
161 views

How to pronounce a superscript ə?

And why there's a superscript ə? just found this on the dictionary.cambridge.org ...
7
votes
1answer
64 views

History/origin of the pronunciation/spelling of “Butcher”?

The pronunciation of the first syllable of butcher as /ˈbʊt͡ʃ ..../ is for non-native speakers astonishing. From spelling alone, one would probably guess that it's pronunciation would be more like ...
0
votes
1answer
44 views

BrE: monophthong in here, clear, mere, etc

Usually in BrE words like clear, fere, clear, mere, etc are pronounced with a diphthong comprising an open high front vowel followed by something resembling a schwa. However, they are sometimes ...
6
votes
2answers
278 views

Are you googlable?

The search engine Google was launched in 1998 and on that same year, the term googling was first used. The verb “to google” earned its official status in the Oxford English Dictionary on June 15, ...
0
votes
2answers
52 views

Do people really say “What is that mean” or it just sounds like that?

I often hear people saying something that sounds like "What is that mean" on TV and the Internet but I am wondering whether they really mean that or they actually say "What does it mean". If the ...
1
vote
1answer
42 views

Which one of the following is the standard American accent of the word “badminton”: “/ˈbædˌmɪtn̩/” “/ˈbæd.mɪn.tən/”?

Ok, let check this word "badminton". In online Cambridge dictionary, it is pronounced as /ˈbæd.mɪn.tən/ Source In online Merrian-Webster dictionary, it is pronounced as /ˈbædˌmɪtn̩/ Source When ...
5
votes
2answers
758 views

How do Americans pronounce the 't' in “romantic”, “countable”, etc?

As for a 't' trapped between /n/ and a vowel, I've heard it pronounced in three different ways: Maybe the formal, standard way is to fully pronounce the /t/ sound: romantic: /roʊˈmæntɪk/ ...
6
votes
5answers
770 views

Do we pronounce a “t” sound in negative contractions “n't”

I'm faced with difficulties how to pronounce contractions like don't, wouldn't, and etc. correctly. Somehow I read from some grammar British student book that "t" is not pronounced but I didn't pay ...
3
votes
1answer
61 views

What dictates how new words should be pronounced? [closed]

Say the word 'libuv', which is a relatively new support library in computer programming. If I can't find any references on the web as to how it should be pronounced, how do I say it? And in general ...
16
votes
4answers
1k views

What was going on with “quha”, “quhat” and the like in Scots and English?

From the Dictionar o the Scots Leid: Quha, Quhay, interrog. and rel. pron. Also: qwha, qha, qua, qwa, wha, vha, hua; qhaa; quhaw; quhai qwhay, whay, quay; quhae, whae; quhe, quhey, qwhey. ...