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
13k views

The pronunciation of buoy

How did the word buoy come to be pronounced "BOO-ee" in most of the US? The British pronunciation "BOY" as in the word buoyancy or buoyant (which both countries pronounce the same) seems to be pretty ...
0
votes
4answers
303 views

How should one spell the sound “eye” when creating a word?

How can I invent a word (or name) containing the sound "ai" (sounds like "eye") so that an English-speaker is likely to guess the correct pronunciation based on spelling alone, with no outside ...
2
votes
1answer
290 views

How is the spelling of a hyphenated word read?

How is the spelling of a hyphenated word usually read out loud? For example, with "Anglo-Saxon", do we say: "It is spelt as ...
-1
votes
1answer
41 views

What is the correct transcription of 'wikinames'?

I thought that this is [ˌwiki'neimz], but do I really need to indicate primary stress, since names contains only one syllable?
4
votes
2answers
245 views

Is “fillet” a different word in “salmon fillet” than in “leather fillet”

In the question "Is there a name for words which are pronounced differently depending on which definition is being used?" it was suggested by two people that when the word "fillet" is used to describe ...
82
votes
14answers
43k views

When should I use “a” vs “an”?

In the following example, is it appropriate to use a or an as the indefinite article, and why? He ate __ green apple. I know that in the case of just "apple", it would be "an apple," but I've ...
0
votes
2answers
167 views

The elision of alveolar plosives

when the phrase "Can't complain" is pronounced [ˈkænt kəmˈpleɪn] I think that the T is dropped in fast speech because of the alveolar plosives. Right? I read that when T comes before these letters: / ...
0
votes
0answers
39 views

LINKING: Suffix -ed to Consonants [duplicate]

I read this in American accent book. I quote the text exactly how it is written in the book: The suffix -ed is not pronounced precisely when it is linked to another consonant. For example, mailed ...
12
votes
8answers
6k views

Is there a rule for the correct pronunciation of words starting with “ex”?

The following words are pronounced starting with an iks / igz: extent [ɪkˈstent] expect [ɪk'spekt] exterminate [ɪk'stɜːmɪneɪt] external [ɪkˈstɜːn(ə)l] exhaust [ɪg'zɔːst] examine [ɪg'zæmɪn] ...
3
votes
2answers
116 views

Pronunciation Deleting /t/ Between Consonants [duplicate]

When I pronounce the phrase: "Look, it's the first day. I don't wanna be late." I think that the /t/ in the words "first" and "don't" can be deleted. Am I right? I'm talking about casual speech. ...
0
votes
2answers
65 views

Slang word 'BEOCH' pronunciation

I managed to find on Internet the meaning of the word BEOCH which equals BITCH. But how is it pronounced left me wondering ! Could someone help me with, please .
4
votes
3answers
460 views

Are there many -tion words that sound like 'vision'?

Usually -tion words, such as motion, education, and lotion, end with a -shn sound. But equation ends with a sound rhyming with vision. Are there many more? What might some of them be? And if the ...
0
votes
2answers
39 views

Vowel variation of [ɒ]

Good evening. I heard in my English book the word holiday, which is usually noted /'hɒlɪdeɪ/ pronounced ['hɔ̝lɪdeɪ]. Is it frequent ?
1
vote
1answer
93 views

Pronunciation of words like thanks, land, and

This words are always written with æ but I always hear them pronounced like thenk, lend, end... I read that this pronunciation was and old-style, but I have hardly ever heard them pronounced -[ænd]. ...
1
vote
1answer
96 views

Pronunciation of one

I have the feeling that the word one is not always pronounced in all accents (but I cannot say which exactly) with the same vowel that cup or love. I believe that with accents where we pronounce cup ...
5
votes
2answers
3k views

Why does the pronunciation of the word “wife” [waif] change in the word “midwifery” [ˈmɪdˌwɪfərɪ]?

I recently found out that the word wife is pronounced differently in the following examples: wife [waif] / midwife [midwaif] / but midwifery [ˈmɪdˌwɪfərɪ] This appears to be another inconsistency ...
1
vote
1answer
56 views

Short i stressed and unstressed in English accents without weak merger

According to all English vowel chart, there is only one short i sound, so, it is the same sound in posItion and in rosEs, in the accents without the weak merger ? Thanks
7
votes
3answers
4k views

How do you pronounce “Lowe” in “Lowe's”

How do you pronounce "Lowe" in "Lowe's", the home improvement store in U.S.? How is it pronounced when it is in a person's name? Is it pronounced in the same way?
1
vote
1answer
58 views

How do you look up what lexical set a word belongs to?

(I mean phonological lexical sets, if that wasn't clear.) How do you look up what lexical set a word is in? Is there any sort of open database anywhere? Like, say I have the LOT/CLOTH merger, and I ...
2
votes
3answers
116 views

Missing sound: final skt letters

I've noticed that many Americans in movies usually omit letter k when it falls between s and t sounds at the end of any word like in asked, tasked, Can we generalize that as a rule, so the word ...
0
votes
2answers
107 views

pronouncing t's as d's [duplicate]

Why do some people pronounce "cotton" as codden and "satin" as saddin and Russian leader "Putin" as pudin? These pronunciations are made even by professional news people on national television.
0
votes
1answer
60 views

What do they say in a linked video? (5 words)

A video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vUVvDM0tIjU Now parts I'm not getting: 0:21 'till my father was (?). I've been so (?) for quite...' 2:09 '...a shift from (?) enlighting to...' 2:21 ...
1
vote
0answers
46 views

Pronunciation of the plural of the word 'trough'? [closed]

How do you pronounce troughs (the plural of trough)? /trɒfs/ or /trɒvs/?
0
votes
1answer
98 views

So called “tap”, or “nap”

I'm interested in so called "tap" in american English. I've read a tap occurs in a word "twenty". I've heard this word in the internet and I've noticed a t is not pronounced or is pronounced simply as ...
1
vote
8answers
1k views

Is there a difference between “bitter” and “better” in pronunciation?

I was wondering if there was any difference between "bitter" and "better" in pronunciation? My assumption is that one is pronounced with a soft "d" as in "better" and the other one with a hard "t" as ...
3
votes
2answers
1k views

Pronunciation of final T sounds in English

What's the word to describe the phenomenon of the final 't' sound becoming a stop without aspiration, vs. how it sounds at the beginning of a word? Does any one particular dialect/accent of English ...
19
votes
4answers
8k 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 ...
3
votes
3answers
821 views

Correct pronunciation of “TT”? [closed]

A single t between vowels sounds like a d to me (or like an r in my language, Brazilian Portuguese). May I say the tt spelling the same way, or does that only work for a single t?
9
votes
3answers
4k views

“nt” pronounced as “n” in American English (as in “Internet”): what is it called?

I know that pronouncing "t" as "d" is called a flap t, but is there a name for pronouncing "nt" as "n" in some words, as is common in American English? Examples: "Internet" is pronounced as "inner ...
0
votes
1answer
77 views

What is the pronunciation of “Software”?

I have heard the pronunciation of the word Software as "softwher".But recently i've heard Steve Jobs saying "sofwher" in a YouTube video. link : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vN4U5FqrOdQ
6
votes
3answers
818 views

Pronunciation of “hypokeimenon”

How should hypokeimenon be pronounced? P.S. For the curious, a sci-fi book I'm reading used several words I did not know. When I looked them up, I also ran across hypokeimenon and wondered about ...
14
votes
2answers
16k views

Why is the “a” in “cocoa” silent?

Not being a native speaker of English, one of those words that tripped me up is “cocoa”. Besides having its vowels inverted from “cacao”; it also is pronounced exactly the same as “coco”, whereas ...
10
votes
5answers
8k views

Why is quixotic pronounced as it is?

Since "quixotic" was coined with Don Quixote as its basis, why is it pronounced "kwicks-OTT-ick" when it should by rights/origin be pronounced "Key-HO-tick"? It even sounds more onomatopoeiatic the ...
34
votes
3answers
4k views

How to pronounce “720p” and “1080p”

How do you pronounce 720p and 1080p? Because I don't live in a country that uses English, I haven't heard it yet. I guess it doesn't have a rule. seven hundred twenty p seven twenty p seventy two ...
0
votes
1answer
43 views

Pronunciation rules [closed]

I was always wondering if there is a compact set of rules that helps readers enunciate English words. One of the reasons why I believe there are such rules is that there are some online dictionaries ...
21
votes
4answers
35k 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 ...
3
votes
1answer
1k views

Is there a rule for the pronunciation of words with the suffix -ative?

I have observed that there are, at least, two patterns of pronunciation for words ending in -ative: The first syllable is stressed and the suffix is pronounced as /eɪtɪv/ (e.g. qualitative) The ...
0
votes
1answer
59 views

Pronouncing 'Going' in UK English

How to pronounce 'going' in UK english? As per phonetics 'go' is pronounced as 'go-v' So when we add 'ing' whether we have to pronounce it 'go-v-ing'or just 'going'?
1
vote
3answers
131 views

For word pronunciation that have 2 consonants standing next to each other and at the end, Do we have to fully aspirate both of them?

I am confused about this question for long time but no internet resource explains about this. Ok, when we have a consonant followed by an vowel in a pronunciation then for sure we have to fully ...
1
vote
2answers
98 views

Linking: Sibilant with Other Sibilants (was + starting) [duplicate]

I read in an American Accent book that there is no break between sibilants adjoining each other between words. For example, this phrase: I was starting to worry. The words was + starting sound ...
-1
votes
2answers
77 views

How do i know if the word is step or glide in English [closed]

today I have a lesson in school about steps and glides and i didn't understand it. My first question what are steps and glides? My second question is how do i know if the sentence ends with steps or ...
0
votes
2answers
110 views

unreleased final consonant sounds [closed]

in school I learned that unreleased final consonant sounds b,d,d,k,p,t my question is what does unreleased mean ? my 2 question He played well and ran fast . My teacher said the st in fast is ...
1
vote
3answers
9k views

Pronunciation of “err”

I use to pronounce this word so that it rhymes with 'her', but recently I've been told to pronounce it like "air". Which pronunciation was it originally, and which pronunciation was correct?
1
vote
1answer
56 views

How do you pronounce serpentine? [closed]

I have hear serpentine pronounced sir-pen-tine and sir-pen-teen. Which is correct or more common?
173
votes
7answers
28k views
1
vote
2answers
102 views

When to pronounce # for pound, sharp, hash or hashtag? [duplicate]

How to pronounce # in a proper way? Currently, I know it's used to pronounce "pound" in US English, "hash" in British English, "sharp" for C#--a programming language, and number sign to list items. ...
4
votes
2answers
450 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 ...
-1
votes
1answer
33 views

Used is pronounced as /juːzd/ or /juːst/? [closed]

Different dictionary pronounces used differently. One as /juːst/ http://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/british/used Other as /juːzd/ http://www.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/english/used ...
1
vote
1answer
103 views

International Phonetic Alphabet: why are the symbols used for the letter “i” in “champion” and “billion” different?

If you have a look at the phonetic transcriptions (in IPA, International Phonetic Alphabet) of "champion" and "billion" you get a different symbol for the letter "i" (Cambridge Dictionaries Online, ...
1
vote
2answers
50 views

Why is 'sort of' pronounced /sɔːrdəv/ in AmE though /t/ is not between vowels?

Sort /sɔːrt/ of /əv/ Why is "sort of" pronounced /sɔːrdəv/ in American English even though /t/ is not between the two vowels /r/ & /ə/?