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

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7
votes
5answers
824 views

Difference in pronunciation of “a team” and “A team”?

I noticed that I pronounce the A differently based on the intended meaning: I belong to the A-team. (like ey in they) and I belong to a team. (like a in apple) Are the pronunciations ...
3
votes
1answer
50 views

What decides how to read a Roman number in titles?

Is there a fixed rule that decides whether to read a Roman numeral as a cardinal number or an ordinal number? For Example, WWII, we say World War Two, but Queen Elizabeth II, Queen Elizabeth the ...
14
votes
4answers
13k 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?
6
votes
1answer
112 views

Can native English speakers tell the differences between [ɣ] voiced velar fricative and [g] voiced velar stop?

We don't have [g] in Vietnamese so I use [ɣ] instead. I wonder if it is acceptable since I can't tell the difference between them. And it seems like that native speakers can't distinguish the ...
2
votes
1answer
6k views

Are there any rules as to why the letter 'r' is silent in some words?

How do I know when to keep r silent in pronunciation? Examples: Not silent cry free friend Silent German iron learn
11
votes
1answer
6k views

Why is “blood” pronounced the way it is?

I mean, why isn't it pronounced "blue-d" rather than "blud". And this applies to "flood" too, but not "glood" or "clood" I imagine.
2
votes
0answers
41 views

How do we get pronunciation Yoost to?

In this thread How does the phrase "used to" work, grammatically? the construct "used to" is discussed but there is no mention of its pronunciation. Here (Canada) the "used" in this phrase ...
3
votes
1answer
142 views

Why 'hippo-paw-tamus?'

The ruminations of an idle mind: Several English words such as potion, potable, potables, poison, derive from the Latin root potare, poto "to drink". In all cases these words are pronounced with a ...
0
votes
0answers
22 views

How should “pinisi” be pronounced?

Yesterday, while searching the Internet for Indonesian sailing ships, I came across the Wikipedia article for the pinisi. No pronunciation is given in that article, and I was unable to find anything ...
0
votes
1answer
47 views

Do we ever pronounce “sale” as “sell”?

I'm not a native speaker and I have always heard that "sale" is pronounced "sail/say+l", and "sell" is pronounced "cell". But my teacher who is a lawyer always pronounces "sale" as "sell". He is not a ...
1
vote
1answer
38 views

Pronunciation of prefixes or letters like “acc-” , “ent-”, “tri-” in various words like accent, enter, trivial?

I am not a native English speaker and thus the variation of pronunciation always amazes me. How can the exact prefix or letters pronounced so differently in some words, for example: Accent is ...
0
votes
1answer
56 views

Difference between variants of pronunciation such as /fɑg/ vs. /fɔg/ for “fog”?

Some dictionaries give two variants of pronunciation (with /ɑ/ vs. /ɔ/) for words like: fog, log, loss, etc. I think that the variant with /ɑ/ has nothing to do with the cot–caught merger because ...
3
votes
1answer
85 views

Is the pronunciation of 'th' as in think 'f' specific to a native speaker's variety of English?

I'm asking this because I heard two people say fink* instead of think & bof* instead of both: a non native university teacher of English and a native speaker of English. If it's not a speech ...
0
votes
0answers
58 views

Are there any dialects of English that pronounce “regalia” as “rəˈɡälyə”?

Google tells me that it sounds like this: rəˈɡālyə Other resources say: merriam-webster.com: /ri-ˈgāl-yə/ dictionary.com: /ri-gey-lee-uh/, /-geyl-yuh/ dictionary.cambridge.org: /rɪˈɡeɪl·jə/ ...
3
votes
2answers
89 views

Does “shore” require the “r” sound in the pronunciation (UK pronunciation)?

In the Cambridge Dictionary I see the pronunciation of the word shore is represented by /ʃɔːr/. In the WordReference dictionary it is instead pronounced as /ʃɔː/. The "r" sound is silent in the last ...
0
votes
0answers
33 views

On the symbols ʊ and u:, long sounds vs short sounds [on hold]

Is the u: supposed to be the long version of the ʊ? Reading the IPA sounds is there a specific arrangement that specifies a shorter version against the longer version?
5
votes
3answers
3k 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 ...
0
votes
0answers
21 views

Pronunciation of Gariepy

Gariepy is a surname. From what I've seen, it seems to be a French/Canadian surname, so I'd expect /garje'pi/ (actually with a French uvular /ʀ/). I have heard it pronounced /ga'riepi/ by my Calculus ...
1
vote
3answers
29k views

What's the right way to pronounce “Louis”?

The name of the comedian Louis C.K. is pronounced LU-EE-SEE-KAY. Is the S pronounced as a part of the given name "Louis", or just the first constant of the of the letter C? Is there a canonical way ...
32
votes
3answers
41k views

How do you pronounce “Git”?

How do you pronounce Git? Because I don't live in a country that uses English, I haven't heard it yet. In my country, some people use [ɡɪt] and others use [jɪt]. Which is the one that most people use?
8
votes
2answers
1k views

Is it acceptable that 'fuel' is pronounced as 'fju:ə'

One of my colleague have kept pronouncing 'fuel' as 'fju:ə'. There is omission of the 'L' sound. In the dictionary, phonetic transcription of 'fuel' is 'fju:əl' I'm not a native speaker (living in ...
1
vote
2answers
124 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 ...
1
vote
0answers
59 views

Why do some English speakers sound like “ü” when saying “ow”? [closed]

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dPJiShBIPw8 In this example, the narrator sounds like "loy power", "soy far soy good" instead of "low power", "so far so good". Every time the [ou] sounding is ...
3
votes
0answers
40 views

Ipa vowels relationships

Lately I'm into improving my english (UK) pronunciation. I'm using the IPA chart for such purpose. I was wondering if there's any relationship between the ə sound and the several diphthongs that ...
3
votes
2answers
78 views

Deletion of /h/

I was once told by my BrE teacher that when we have a word ending with a consonant followed by another word starting with h, the h is deleted, meaning that the pronunciation is different. For ...
10
votes
4answers
13k views

Pronunciation of words ending with “‑ae”

For example, Styracaceae, Suidae, Sulidae, Sylviidae, Symplocaceae, etc. I don’t know how to pronounce them correctly.
3
votes
1answer
421 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, e.g....
4
votes
2answers
2k views

What is the name for “pronunciation spelling”?

Dictionaries often have "pronunciation spelling" listed next to the word. For example: port·man·teau - noun \pȯrt-ˈman-(ˌ)tō\ What is the name for this alphabet/system? Is it a universal system,...
8
votes
1answer
2k views

“ng” in “wrong of me” pronounced [ŋɡ]

"ng" is pronounced normally [ŋ], but for some people it becomes [ng] when followed by a vowel. What's the phonological rule about this? Is it a common feature of all dialects of English?
4
votes
2answers
121 views

Why do we pronounce a long second vowel in “decide”, but a short second vowel in “decision”?

The "i" in "decide" is pronounced [aɪ], whereas the first "i" in "decision" is pronounced [ɪ], at least in American English. The same with pairs like collide/collision, divide/division, etc., despite ...
2
votes
1answer
83 views

Pronunciation of the plural of 'Ms'

The pronunciation of 'Ms' is /mɪz/. How about the plural of 'Ms' (i.e. Mss)? Will it be /mɪzɪz/ or simply /mɪz/ (pronunciation unchanged)?
14
votes
5answers
4k views

Are there any words in English pronounced with /e/ at the end?

In first-language English pronunciation (Australian, British, American, etc., not Indian, Malaysian, etc.) are there any words with the /e/ (or /ɛ/) sound in "bed" /bed/ at the end of a word? As a ...
1
vote
1answer
185 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
2
votes
4answers
467 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 "ding,...
3
votes
1answer
193 views

Voiced or voiceless cluster in “Brexit?”

I was watching American national news coverage of the "Brexit" poll, and it seemed to me that none of the news anchors nor commentators used a voiced consonant cluster in their pronunciation of the ...
1
vote
1answer
301 views

Why are we supposed to say the “a” as an “e” in “any” and “many”?

I speak Australian English, but I seem to pronounce the words many and anything differently from how the vast majority of people here do so. I pronounce it using an a sound rather than an e sound ...
0
votes
1answer
186 views

Is there any word in English where the sound /o/ stands alone without being part of a diphthong?

See this picture (Source) See the vowel "o"? I couldn't find any word in the English dictionary that has the sound /o/ alone without being part of a diphthong. For example, in /ɡoʊ/ (go), the /ʊ/ ...
45
votes
6answers
19k views

How to pronounce the ^ symbol?

How should the ^ symbol be pronounced? I searched on internet but couldn't find answer.
1
vote
4answers
125 views

How to pronounce “locale”?

In computing, a locale is an identifier for a user’s language or region. As a non-native speaker, I somehow came to pronounce it low-kale, while it seems it’s rather enunciated lo-kaal (avowing its ...
1
vote
1answer
124 views

Where do I make the pause in this sentence [closed]

I am a Catholic monk, in our breviaries, in the English edition, we have a response for the night prayer which goes: "Into your hands, Lord, I commend my spirit." How do I use this? Is it Into your ...
2
votes
1answer
46 views

When and where did * become “splat”?

I learned the asterisk character is the reason splatbooks are named such (from *books). However, I've been unable to find any specifics on who started pronouncing * as "splat". I know it's not very ...
0
votes
2answers
433 views

What is the pronounciation of “the” before the vowel “e”? [duplicate]

How do you pronounce the vowel in the article "the" when used before "evil"? (American English)
2
votes
3answers
564 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 ...
37
votes
7answers
25k views

Why is “primer” pronounced with a short “i” sound?

This word—used to mean an elementary textbook, not a painting material—annoys me to no end. Does anyone know why, exactly, "primer" is pronounced with a short "i" sound? I don't know why, call it ...
105
votes
15answers
94k 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 ...
2
votes
0answers
50 views

Is there a rule for when to pronounce “ah” instead of “ae” in RP versus GA? [duplicate]

I would like to know if there is a rule when to pronounce ah in RP versus ae in GA. Is it a question of vocabulary or is there a rule for that? Examples: dance- in RP is pronounced ah but in GA it ...
2
votes
2answers
1k views

difference between American and British /ӕ/ sound

When I presented British /ӕ/ sound to three Korean English-familiar persons online - they are doing answering English-related questions activities [case 1; case 2], and asked what sound it’s like /ӕ/ ...
5
votes
4answers
303 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 ...
2
votes
1answer
75 views

Pronunciation of single-syllable words ending in -ost

In Modern English, there are several monosyllabic words ending in -ost, like "most", "cost", "post", "lost", "frost". Assuming RP, some of them are pronounced with /əʊ/ (post) and others with /ɒ/ (...
1
vote
1answer
93 views

Pronunciation of “Ozymandias”

Percy Bysshe Shelley's poem Ozymandias is written in iambic pentameter and contains the famous lines 'My name is Ozymandias, king of kings: Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!' I can ...