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

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2
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1answer
126 views

What's the name of this pronunciation guide

In dictionaries I see two guides for pronunciation. for example, for the word "ambiguity":  [am-bi-gyoo-i-tee] AND /ˌæmbɪˈgyuɪti/ I know the second one is named IPA. My question is, is there a ...
1
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3answers
204 views

How should the first “o” in “operator” be pronounced?

I've always been taught that a vowel before a double consonant following another vowel should have a short sound. Conversely, there are many situations where a vowel preceding a single consonant and ...
0
votes
1answer
527 views

What are some good ideas to practice /s/ sound in conversation? [closed]

I have been learning English for seven months. I know the basic grammar rules of final /s/, for example, she like*s* ..., he love*s* ..., and so on. In Thai language, we don't have /s/, /k/, /t/, and ...
13
votes
3answers
1k views

Why is “Chop Gate” pronounced so strangely?

I was passing through the hamlet of Chop Gate (in North Yorkshire) the other day, and heard it referred to as "chop yat" (tʃɒp yæt). This source here concurs with that pronunciation. Does anyone know ...
5
votes
1answer
523 views

words pronounced with their letters reversed

Why are some words pronounced as though their letters were reversed? For example, why is bible pronounced “buy-bel” and not “bib-lee”, or Favre pronounced “far-vuh” and not “fav-rah”?
1
vote
1answer
560 views

Is there a software that can help my speech and grammar [closed]

Is there a software that can help me to improve my speech and grammar?...like learning the past participle,present participle and etc...also in constructing the sentences...or if there is no software ...
8
votes
2answers
753 views

“Non-rhotic” is to R-droppers as “non-?????” is to L-droppers

Certain speakers of English have a tendency to “drop” L’s that occur after a vowel but before another consonant, as in balm, calm, golf, gulf, palm, wolf, and many more. Often these aren’t ...
-1
votes
2answers
855 views

How to pronounce 3:1 ratio? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: How do I pronounce “ratio 1:1”? What is the correct pronunciation of 3:1 (as a ratio)? I know this might be simple enough to be answered by any native ...
9
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5answers
5k views

How do I pronounce “ratio 1:1”?

How do I pronounce "ratio 1:1"? Should I pronounce it "ratio 1 to 1"?
8
votes
1answer
498 views

What does the phonetic symbol after the comma mean here?

I was checking the Pronunciation of enshrine from ODO which lists: Pronunciation: /ɪnˈʃrʌɪn, ɛn-/ Does it mean that there are two different accepted pronunciations?
3
votes
1answer
724 views

Pronunciation of voiced “th” triggers a consonant shift of “d” and “r”

There is a class of words, mainly such as the, this, that, these, those, though, although, then, there, thus, the archaic thou, thee, thy, thine, thyself, thence; which I always find myself ...
8
votes
5answers
1k views

Intonation in the phrase “How are you?”

From native English speakers I often hear the phrase "How are you?" intonated differently. Sometimes the word "are" is stressed, and sometimes the word "you" is. What is the difference between these ...
2
votes
0answers
61 views

When do we pronounce “the” as “the” and when as “thi” [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: What is the pronunciation of “the?” I am not from the UK or the US, English is not my mother tongue. I pronounce "the" as "the" (with e sounding like the ...
3
votes
2answers
197 views

How to pronounce acronyms with apostrophes?

Simple question: How do you pronounce acronyms when they're used with apostrophe to express possession? For example: In the NIH's high-risk, high-reward programmes, “if an idea isn't developing ...
3
votes
2answers
1k views

What is the correct spelling of the Arabic name سعد in English?

I need help in how to spell the Arabic name (سعد). I previously asked the question Sa'ad : Correct spelling in English and French; however, it got closed. I added a youtube video describing how ...
7
votes
2answers
958 views

When does the name prefix “Mc” take stress?

Mc (or Mac) is often used as a prefix in Gaelic-derived names. In one class containing most such names, prefixing Mc does not affect the position of the accent somewhere on the base name. Thus Mc is ...
3
votes
2answers
575 views

What is the word for obtaining a rhyme by mispronouncing a word using a regional dialect?

Take the lyrics: ... Now he lives in the islands Fishing the pilin's (instead of pilings) ... Is there a word that means to alter the pronunciation to achieve a rhyme (in song)?
17
votes
4answers
2k views

How to explain accent variations to students

I am an ESL teacher working in China. During lessons, I am occasional interrupted by students or parents who point out that my pronunciation of some words is incorrect. They then produce a dictionary ...
8
votes
2answers
499 views

History of pronunciation of “moiety”

Wiktionary shows the pronunciation of moiety as /ˈmɔɪ.ə.ti/, which I think agrees with the audio versions at merriam-webster.com and howjsay.com. (Be warned that both those links produce audio when ...
0
votes
3answers
4k views

How do you pronounce “Gross”? [closed]

Is it "graws" or "grohs"? I've heard it pronounced both ways. Is it differently pronounced in American and British English? My guess is that it is.
1
vote
1answer
890 views

How do native speakers guess the pronunciation of a word that they've never seen before? [closed]

How do native speakers guess the pronunciation of a word that they've never seen before ? Is there a general rule for that ? For example, someone said : Words that end in -ic or -tion will be ...
2
votes
5answers
642 views

How to pronunce the suffix “-less”

I know how to pronounce less. But in words with the suffix -less, it sometimes sounds like /lis/, other times like /les/. Which is true?
4
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3answers
3k views

Pronunciation of “xeno-”

I actually want to present this question in two parts: 1) First of all, xenos comes from ξένος. Nevertheless, it is pronounced with "z" instead of "ks" (/ks/). How come? 2) Let's take the word ...
4
votes
4answers
884 views

Pronunciation of “candidate”

Dictionaries generally show two pronunciations for the word candidate: /ˈkændɪˌdeɪt/ and /ˈkændɪdət/. Macmillan dictionary shows both are used in either American or British English. So does Oxford ...
-1
votes
1answer
235 views

Use of holier-than-thou phrase [closed]

Can I use the phrase (new to me) holier-than-thou like don't give holier-than-thou attitude. And what is more possibilities of using this phrase? What is the correct pronunciation of the phrase? ...
9
votes
1answer
1k views

Why do we pronounce Dean as /diːn/ but Sean as /ʃɒn/?

The following words which end with an ean are pronounced as /*i:n/ whereas Sean is pronounced as /ʃɒn/: bean, dean, lean, mean... Why is Sean not pronounced as /si:n/ but as /ʃɒn/? Where does ...
7
votes
2answers
775 views

Where did “sorry” get its vowel sound?

Sorry has two pronunciations in my dictionary: ˈsärē and ˈsôrē. The first is the one I am interested in because, as someone pointed out to me, the or pattern in English is nearly always pronounced as ...
8
votes
3answers
10k views

Is “po-TAH-to” an acceptable pronunciation for “potato”?

Immortalized in the George and Ira Gershwin song "Let's Call the Whole Thing Off" is the nitpicking of pronunciation differences: You like potato and I like potahto, You like tomato and I like ...
5
votes
4answers
509 views

Why is “Rosen Plevneliev” pronounced with a /z/?

As I have told you in my previous question, I have heard the CBS news about the Bulgarian president visiting the US here. I don't know why, but the way the reporter has pronounced his name makes me ...
2
votes
2answers
223 views

The pronunciation of “'ll” in spoken English [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Pronunciation of “'ll” Trying to understand completely how "'ll" should be pronounced in spoken English, I uploaded a part of AJ Hoge lesson. You can ...
7
votes
5answers
2k views

Pronunciation of “a” in “make a difference” [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: pronunciation of “a” I would like to know the pronunciation of a in the expression make a difference. Is it like a in ate or like a in about?
0
votes
1answer
390 views

Pronunciation of “'ll”

How do I read the following sentences (especially in conversational speech)? The dog'll eat the bones. Tom'll go to school. Anna'll come tomorrow. I mean the sound of 'll.
2
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1answer
146 views
3
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1answer
1k views

The pronunciation of “… no matter how minute” vs “5 minutes past the hour” [closed]

I was just checking dictionary.com and the pronunciation of "minute" doesn't seem to change in these two setences: It is five minutes past the hour. I'll take any change, no matter how minute. ...
4
votes
2answers
5k views

What is the correct pronunciation of “February”? [closed]

Please tell how do we correctly pronounce the word February. Though common pronunciation should be Feb-RU-ary, in some dictionaries it is Feb-U-ary where the first "r" is dropped. Which one is ...
1
vote
3answers
3k views

The correct pronunciation of the last vowel in words “a priori” and “a posteriori”

English.SE, Hi, first time being here. I have had this confusion about the pronunciation of "a priori" and "a posteriori" for a long time, normally I just read the last vowel as /i/, however today my ...
1
vote
2answers
421 views

Correct pronunciation of “Can”

How to correctly pronounce word "can" in British English and in American English? Here's somehow related answer but it is more about differences between "can" and "can't", and I'm interested how to ...
0
votes
5answers
1k views

Correct pronunciation of “career”

Is it car-rear? Or, is it carry-er? The word is very commonly used among Japanese with the same meaning, and we say it like carry-er, which I suppose is wrong.
1
vote
1answer
2k views

Usage of sound /ʒ/ in English (not /dʒ/) [closed]

I'm trying to explain to an English speaker how to pronounce the letter j in French, and was looking for cases where it appears in English. It seems that j is almost always pronounced /dʒ/. Examples ...
2
votes
3answers
358 views

Are “rode” and “rowed” pronounced the same?

Is there an English accent which would distinguish these two sentences? He rode from the bridge to the pier. He rowed from the bridge to the pier.
-4
votes
4answers
2k views

It's not proper.. no such thing as “unseeming(ing)ly”? [closed]

I'll keep it simple, as I've learned - the hard way - that schtick does NOT go over well, around here. So.... unseemly |ˌənˈsēmlē| adj. (of behavior or actions) not proper or appropriate: an ...
6
votes
2answers
542 views

How to pronounce “404 Not Found”

How do we pronounce the http status code 404 not found: four hundreds and four, four-zero-four or four-four? We usually use 200, 201, 302, 401, 403, 404, 412, 500. I have read How to pronounce ...
10
votes
1answer
2k views

Why on earth are binoculars pronounced as /bɪˈnɒk.jʊ.ləz/ instead of /baɪˈnɒk.jʊ.ləz/?

I once pronounced binoculars as /baɪˈnɒk.jʊ.ləz/ and my friend told me that it is supposed to be pronounced as /bɪˈnɒk.jʊ.ləz/ I didn't believe him as I was very sure that the prefix bi- ...
1
vote
3answers
102 views

Is there any way to convey a certain pronunciation in the English language?

Take the sentence: I want to give you the best customer experience possible. How can I change a part of the sentence so that the "the" is pronounced as "thee"?
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votes
3answers
363 views

Why “who is” sounds “whiz”?

Please elaborate, when we say "who is", why does it sound "whiz"? Also one more example I would like to include: why "visit us" sounds "visi-tas"?
6
votes
7answers
13k views

How do you properly pronounce 'mall'?

In America, it's pretty much universally pronounced "moll" but in the UK, I have heard a few different ways of pronouncing it: Mall (rhymes with pal) Maul (rhymes with ball and hence the American ...
5
votes
2answers
331 views

How would a native British speaker say “Betteredge”?

I am reading Wilkie Collins' The Moonstone, and a prominent character in the story has the name of Betteredge. My question is (since I like to imagine the dialogue in a British-English book as if ...
3
votes
1answer
778 views

What are some effective ways a foreign speaker can improve pronunciation in English? [closed]

How can a foreign speaker (where a "foreign speaker" speaks English as a second language) effectively improve their spoken English by improving their pronunciation and reducing their foreign accent. ...
3
votes
2answers
10k views

Reading out decimal numbers in English [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: How to write decimal values in words How do you read numbers like these? 0.12 "oh point twelve", "zero point one two", "zero and twelve hundreds" And these ones? ...
6
votes
2answers
751 views

How to pronounce the resolution 1280×800 in English?

How do I say "1280 × 800" in English? I'm not sure how to pronounce the "×" between the numbers. I'm talking about screen resolutions.