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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3answers
62 views

Pronunciation of iff

Do most of English speakers understand the word "iff" in text, and is there a standard pronunciation other than the full "if and only if"?
2
votes
2answers
93 views

Why is the past tense of text, as used by some people, pronounced “text-ted” and not just “tested”?

Why is the past tense of text, as used by some people, pronounced text-Ted and not just tested? One wouldn't say risk-ked for risked, or ask-ked for asked?
6
votes
1answer
230 views

“Carbine” rifle | is there pronunciation demographic data?

Let me count the ways: Car-bine (like: dine, refine, canine.) Car-bean (like: green bean, ravine, serpentine.) CAR-buhn (like: ..like the right and proper way to pronounce the scotch 'Oban'.) ...
2
votes
2answers
142 views

Roaming and Coming in William Shakespeare's O Mistress Mine

William Shakespeare's O Mistress Mine, Feste's song from Twelfth Night, seems to have the rhyming scheme AABCCB. However, the first two lines are problematic for that scheme with modern ...
1
vote
1answer
54 views

Is she speaking proper Cockney (or whatever it is she's imitating)?

At one point in Witness for the Prosecution, Marlene Dietrich's character is at some pains impersonating a guttersnipe. I've been told that the actress spent quite some time working on her accent for ...
3
votes
1answer
70 views

When does /tjʊ/ (Ex: Nice to meet you /miːt jʊ/) turn to /tʃʊ/ & /ʔjʊ/?

In this Wiki link, it said /tj/ could be pronounced as /tʃ/ So, Nice to meet you /... miːt jʊ/ will be /... miːtʃʊ/ But sometimes, I heard it as /... miːʔjʊ/ Watch this short youtube video, Freddie ...
1
vote
1answer
85 views

Identify English accent

My English teacher speaks, as far as I can tell as a native speaker of the German language, some really weird English. However, I'm not entirely sure if this is just my twisted perception or really a ...
3
votes
1answer
203 views

Are “lb” or “lbs” ever pronounced differently from “pound(s)”?

The “standard” pronunciation of lb or lbs is the same as for pound(s). However, given the nature of humans, I find it likely that in some slang a pronunciation based on the written word is used, ...
0
votes
0answers
23 views

How do I pronounce some possessive forms of words whose pronunciations end with s? [duplicate]

The examples come below. Sussex's Case's anus's How do I pronounce them?
0
votes
3answers
92 views

which is the different ea pronunciation : really /ideas/disappear/mean [closed]

a couple of my classmates and I had a discussion about which is the different word.Some said it's ideas, others said "mean". and as a follow up questions does the sound of "ea" change between ideas ...
1
vote
1answer
46 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 ...
1
vote
1answer
63 views

Is Dick Schiller pronounced “shiller” or “skiller” in “Lolita”?

In Vladimir Nabokov's "Lolita," the title character's husband's name is Richard ("Dick") Schiller. Don't hold me to it, but I once heard a radio production (or it may have been a movie, not ...
4
votes
2answers
158 views

Can you hear the difference between 'Writer' and 'Rider'? Why?

Apologies in advance for the slightly blog-like nature of this question. The Background Some of the comments in relation to this question here: Unvoiced /dʒ/ and /ʒ/ in word final position ... ...
1
vote
0answers
81 views

In which vowel do the diphthongs [aʊ] and [aɪ] start?

Surfing the web, I found the following explanations on how to produce the diphthongs [aʊ] and [aɪ]: "/aʊ/ as in all the words of "How now brown cow!". The starting position is the vowel sound /æ/ as ...
3
votes
1answer
93 views

BrE: pronunciation of “to”

My wife is Guyanese and she tells me that in Guyana they are taught to pronounce "to" as an American would pronounce "toe." Guyana was a British colony (the most recent invaders) and their educational ...
2
votes
2answers
255 views

Unvoiced /dʒ/ and /ʒ/ in word final position

It seems to me that both /dʒ/ and /ʒ/ become voiceless (or almost) when they occur in word final position. Is this true? Examples: age, wage, courage, judge garage, sabotage, collage, mirage Does ...
5
votes
2answers
250 views

Strong /strɔːŋ/ → stronger /strɔːŋɡər/ - Why do we have to put an extra /g/ in front of /ər/? Is it a rule?

Ok, see this in the dictionary: Strong /strɔːŋ/ --> Stronger /strɔːŋɡər/ Why do we have to put an extra /g/ in front of /ər/? But "/sing" /sɪŋ/ & "/singer" /ˈsɪŋər/ do not adhere to that rule. ...
4
votes
2answers
85 views

Is there a specialised term for words that are almost always mispronounced?

With few exceptions, I hear people pronounce enmity emnity, Wednesday Wensday, and prerogative perogative. Is there a proper term for this phenomenon?
0
votes
0answers
48 views

Proper pronunciation of the short a

When I hear the "short a" vowel pronounced it doesn't seem as fronted as it should. (I'm talking about the vowel found in words such as bad, lamp, clam, crash, usually transcribed with /æ/ in the IPA, ...
0
votes
1answer
40 views

Why do they have a dot between a consonant and a vowel (ex “/ˈlɪm.ɪt/”) in dictionary.cambridge.org? [closed]

I often use dictionary.cambridge.org for checking the pronunciation and many times I found they used a dot between a consonant and a vowel (ex, limit "/ˈlɪm.ɪt/", or lemon /ˈlem.ən/). Other ...
0
votes
2answers
57 views

is the pronunciation of “secret” “/ˈsiːkrət/” or “/ˈsiːkrɪt/”?

I checked some dictionaries and clearly they are saying "/ˈsiːkrɪt/" but their IPAs are "/ˈsiːkrət/" Source 1: http://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/secret Source 2: ...
1
vote
1answer
55 views

Why do some words change inflection when used differently?

Are there rules that determine if a word changes inflection depending on its part of speech? Some words seems to change inflection whether a noun or a verb, while others are pronounced the same. I ...
0
votes
0answers
63 views

The pronunciation of the definite article by American speakers

I was reading an article the other day and I came across an interesting passage: Notice that the weak form of the is typically [ði] before a vowel-initial word (the apple) but [ðə] before a ...
0
votes
1answer
80 views

How to pronounce 'question'

In all dictionaries the word question is pronounced as /ˈkwɛsʧən/, with ʧ symbolizing the sound ch in ti. I wanted to know if any phonological change happens when pronouncing the word in colloquial ...
0
votes
1answer
81 views

“France” pronunciation; /æ/ vs. /e/ in American accents

Native North American speakers! Please, help me understand one thing: I thought I understood the difference between the /æ/ and /e/ sounds, but now I doubt that anyone can. Please listen to the US ...
3
votes
1answer
113 views

Linking /r/ and elision

In one of my lectures after learning about several processes of connected speech (namely assimilation, elision and linking) we were faced with a transcription exercise with which I have slight problem ...
1
vote
1answer
96 views

T- and D-elision: I hateTHem OR I hated'em

I would appreciate your help with these two questions: 1) I hated them. Will the speaker omit the D or TH sound? Will he say: I hateD'em OR I hateTHem. Are both variatons ...
0
votes
2answers
93 views

Etymologically correct pronunciations that few would accept

Have we been mispronouncing Mount Everest /ˌmaʊnt ˈev(ə)rəst/? It is true that the peak was named after Sir George Everest who pronounced his surname as Eve-rest. But does that etymological detail ...
2
votes
1answer
145 views

How did “ass” lose the 'r'?

The word "ass" (usually marked as "vulgar"; the one that means "buttocks," "butt," etc.) comes from Sanskrit, one would think, since the old Germanic version is not a stand-alone, but has its ...
1
vote
2answers
78 views

How to pronounce shortened words? [closed]

I'm studying programming, and regular English words are often shortened. For example, "previous" is shortened to "prev", "integer" to "int", "character" to "char" etc. How do you pronounce the short ...
0
votes
1answer
178 views

How many hours did you spend/spent studying for the test? [closed]

I'm pretty confused on which sentence is grammatically correct just because online and in person, everyone says it differently: How many hours did you spend studying for the test? or is it: ...
0
votes
1answer
66 views

Why did the pronunciation of Orleans change in New Orleans, while those of French borrowed words were retained?

Words like rendezvous, faux pas, a la carte are still pronounced the same way as they are pronounced in the French language. Why was New Orleans an exception to this?
2
votes
2answers
143 views

Detecting vibration in voiced and voiceless English sounds

I heard people saying that if you put your finger on your throat you would be able to feel voiced sound vibrates and voiceless sound doesn't. I tried it but both sounds seem the same to me. So did I ...
0
votes
0answers
66 views

Using voice commands to check pronounciation

I'm a non-native speaker and, many time, I struggle to get the proper/accurate pronunciation of a word. To check my pronunciation, I would use voice commands assistance (or whatever they call them) ...
1
vote
2answers
97 views

Does the [ɒ] in “not” sound different from the [ɒ] in “hot”?

I would like to know why the [ɒ] in not often sounds different (more rounded) than the [ɒ] in hot, father, or car in American English. I know that in British English the vowel in not is an [ɔ], but ...
0
votes
1answer
98 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 ...
3
votes
1answer
105 views

Pronunciation of words that end with two syllabic R's

There are a few words in English that end with two adjacent syllabic R's (in theory). For example, let's take the word deliverer. As a non-native speaker, I find it very hard to pronounce those two ...
0
votes
0answers
35 views

What is the rule for pronouncing the “a”? [duplicate]

While British people mostly seem to speak a hard "a", American people tend to make an "ae" in some cases. Here are some examples of what I mean, grouped by pattern: glass/grass ...
0
votes
2answers
180 views

What is the origin of the pronunciation of 'Plymouth'? [closed]

It has always confused how my American relatives pronounce the name of their city (Plymouth Meeting) as something like 'Plymeth Meeting'. For me, it seems that the natural way would be something that ...
-1
votes
1answer
39 views

Resign, resort etc, why is s pronounced as z?

Was wondering why we normally pronounce resign as rezine. sign is part of the words origin. Is it do distinguish it from 're-sign', to sign again?
1
vote
0answers
54 views

In some parts of America, do people there COMMONLY use flap T after n, ex “/ˈwɪn.t̬ɚ/”?

I noticed that, in some American dialect (maybe in the South of America), people may use "flap T" after "n". For example, "/ˈwɪn.t̬ɚ/" source Other example, "ninety" /ˈnaɪn.t̬i/Source So, my ...
13
votes
2answers
2k views

How do you pronounce “xth”?

I'm wondering how do you pronounce letters when used in place of ordinal numbers. Examples: The xth root of five. Two to the yth power. The ith odd number. The jth item on the queue. I know how ...
-3
votes
1answer
98 views

Concerning Assonance

Assonance, also known as "slant rhyme," is a repetition of vowel sounds that creates an illusion of rhyming. Wikipedia notes that it's "used in (mainly modern) English poetry." Which leads me to ...
1
vote
1answer
126 views

Some residual effects of the Great Vowel Shift

Here's the complete text of a poem by Rudyard Kipling (from "Just So Stories"): The Camel's hump is an ugly lump Which well you may see at the Zoo; But uglier yet is the hump we get From ...
-1
votes
1answer
74 views

A Vowel Shift Question

Two lines from Byron's Don Juan: 'T is said that Donna Julia's grandmamma Produced her Don more heirs at love than law. This is the coda to an octave, the finalizing couplet, and it's ...
3
votes
1answer
99 views

Pronunciation of ‘an hundred’ [duplicate]

I just saw a number of comments complaining about the first n in the phrase ‘an Herculean task’, claiming it implied a mute h. But is that true? My impression has been that earlier all words on h + ...
1
vote
0answers
46 views

How would you pronounce “Avet” [closed]

I'm choosing a name for my boy to be born soon, and there is an Armenian name pronounced as [ɑˈvɛt] that I like. I was wondering if I write it as "Avet", how would English speakers pronounce it. Or if ...
6
votes
1answer
191 views

Does anywhere else add an 'L' to words ending in a vowel sound?

When I was six I moved from Manchester (northwestern England) to Bath (southwestern England). I was baffled to hear my school mates describe the 'aerials' they lived in. Fast forward many years ...
0
votes
1answer
50 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 ...
1
vote
3answers
124 views

What's the correct pronunciation of BIOS (Basic Input/Output System)?

What's the correct pronunciation of BIOS (Basic Input/Output System)? [ˈbaɪɒs], like in growth-promoting substance present in yeast or ['bɪɒs], thus respecting the meaning of the acronym - [input], ...