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

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32 views

Could you explain the differences among voiced stop, voiceless unaspirated stop & voiceless aspirated stop?

Look at this picture for explaining various mechanics of pronunciation with the vocal cords. Source: wikimedia commons I don't understand it much. Here is what I understood -voiced stop: your ...
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83 views

How do I pronounce the combination of a regnal name/number and a dynasty name?

I know how to pronounce a regnal name with a regnal number after it, like Elizabeth I ("Elizabeth the First") or Charles IV ("Charles the Fourth"). But sometimes I see the regnal name/number followed ...
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70 views

“hundred” and “pretty” pronounced respectively as [ˈhən-dərd] and [ˈpər-tē]

Merriam-Webster's A Pronouncing Dictionary of American English gives [ˈhən-dərd], [ˈpər-tē], [ˈtem-pə(r)-ˌchu̇r], [ˈse-kə(r)-ˌterē], etc., as alternate ways to pronounce "hundred," "pretty," ...
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40 views

Could you Clarify the Front - Back & Close - Open position & other positions in between in IPA vowel chart?

See the IPA vowel chart A front vowel is any in a class of vowel sound used in some spoken languages. The defining characteristic of a front vowel is that the tongue is positioned as far in ...
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55 views

Phonograms ey and ie

My son is using Spalding phonogram cards in his kindergarten class. I like them for the most part, aside from a few weird examples and explanations that aren't quite right, but that I can live with. ...
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51 views

Words that are spoken one way but written another

I was recently involved in answering this question: Renumeration vs Remuneration (reimbursed financially), which is correct? Which asks whether "renumeration" or "remuneration" is correct in terms ...
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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 ...
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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 ...
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65 views

When to reduce and when not to reduce a vowel ([ɪ] & [i])

Most of the time people reduce vowels in speech when these are not stressed, but sometimes these unstressed vowels are fully pronounced, too. For example, most people reduce the [ɪ] to schwa and say ...
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149 views

Rhotic accent in London or in the rest of the UK?

Good evening or good afternoon for the American. I read and it is known that most British accents are non-rhotic, but I’m now in London and I have the feeling that the Rs after vowels and before a ...
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203 views

Is effect pronounced as /ɪˈfekt/ or as /əˈfekt/?

This page ( https://www.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/american_english/effect ) lists it as /əˈfekt/ for American English, but when you click on the pronounce button it is pronounced as /ɪˈfekt/. ...
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102 views

Pronunciation of “Personally” and “Finally”

I always hear people say "personly" and "finely" instead of "personally" and "finally" when they speak. I wonder whether this reduction can apply to other words ending with "-nally"? Just like ...
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109 views

Exaggerating the pronunciation of a vowel or consonant

Is there a word for exaggerating the pronunciation of a vowel or consonant by holding it longer than normal? When conveying this in writing, does it fall in the same category as an accent or dialect ...
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119 views

Why are these spellings pronounced “non phonetically?”

In Anglo English, the word ewe (female sheep) is pronounced "you," rather than, say, "e-weh." Likewise, the surname Ewell, is pronounced "yule," rather than "e-well." Why is that?
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85 views

Pronunciation of Who is it?

I heard the question "Who is it?" in a movie. [Person A] knocked on a door. [Person B] came to open the door, but before that he asks "Who is it?" This three syllables question can be pronounced ...
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236 views

Sentence stress and word linking with the problematic Y?

the question: Can I use your bathroom? phonetically looks like: [kə_naɪ ˈyuz yər ˈbæθˌrum] I think the stress should be on the verb USE and the noun BATHROOM. Am I right? Some dictionaries show the ...
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216 views

Is a syllable defined phonetically or etymologically?

Reading recent postings about syllables I've been struck and baffled by talk of the possibility that words may have a different number of syllables when they are written than when they are spoken. Is ...
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90 views

i vs. I in “pink” “ring”

I've always transcribed "pink" and "ring" with the vowel /I/ (lax) vs. the tense /i/, and my students have never argued with me about it, but suddenly I've been getting a good number of students ...
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24 views
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47 views

'O' Pronunciation

I noticed recently that my friends and I pronounce words like "forest," "orange," and "florida" differently. For example, I noticed that there seem to be three ways that people pronounce these words: ...
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52 views

vowel sound in “stair” pronounced similarly as the “eɪ” diphthong in “fake”?

Sometimes in words which have the ɛ sound followed by an "r" as in "stair", "their" "bear", "where" I hear them pronounced like "steɪəɹ", ðeɪəɹ etc. with the "eɪ" as in "fake", "lake","make" and not ...
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72 views

The pronunciation of the letter r in British English

For me as a german speaker, the English "r" sound is one of my most hated sounds in the English language since they're barely any other languages who use this r. I know that the British r is not ...
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28 views

Help with pronunciation: Difference between 2 variations of the “short u” sound

I really need to distinguish between the 2 variations of the short u sound (in the red box in the pic below, many dictionaries have instructions for pronunciation like this). I can understand the ...
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23 views

Was “pronunshiation” ever a common pronunciation of “pronunciation”?

I came across an old prescriptive pronunciation guide from 1843 that says "pronunciation" ought to be pronounced "pronunshiation" (with /ʃi/ instead of /si/). The author says that the pronunciation ...
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39 views

What are the stress patterns and intonation patterns in “wh” questions?

I have a few problems with stress and inotation when asking questions in English. For example Do we need to stress the question words like "where" "how" or "what"? what is the inotation pattern?
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38 views

Can the “t” letter be uttered as a flap t before the letter “h”?

I know the flap-t is usually used when the "t" is between vowels or between an "r" and a vowel, but I think I can also hear it betwenn vowels and the "h". And I noticed the same with the "g" I think. ...
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45 views

How do you tell the difference between “wrong” and “run” in perception test?

Background Just developing a linguistic test - native English speakers can pass(100% correct), and L2 learners cannnot pass(even though they are very proficient). "Wrong vs run" pair was chosen. ...
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24 views

why “come into a place” sounds like /kʌməntsə/ /pleis/

Two sentences from 60-Second Science Now a study finds that a teacher's racial biases come into play in different ways for high-achieving kids versus low-performing ones. While listening to music, ...
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43 views

Is Lana's “Yup!” a triphthong?

At some point in the Archer series, Lana starts saying very emphatic Yup!s. I was recently wondering about triphthongs and whether they occur in English, and found the Wikipedia entry had only a few ...
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45 views

Technique of pronouncing the rhotic “r”

I, as a German native speaker, have two "techniques" of pronouncing the rhotic "r." I describe them as follows: I move my tongue upward, so it touches the upper row of my teeth and then just make a ...
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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, ...
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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 ...
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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) ...
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405 views

Does the word “ball” have a “short a” sound?

Does the word ball have a short "a" sound, or is it there another definition for the vowel sound? It certainly sounds different from tap and cat.
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264 views

Root pronunciation change when adding suffix

Can someone provide the proper academic terms and explanations for why we pronounce the roots of the following words differently: sociopath vs. sociopathy telepath vs. telepathy ...
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32 views

which word gives emphasis to other word

If A-cum-B denotes that, A and B are similar standing Which word describes B has having greater significance than A? For example : Accounts cum Finance means - both accounts and finance are of ...
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43 views

Is the 'au' phoneme on the decline?

I live in the midwest, grew up in Chicago. Here, altho there is usually a clear distinction between au like in 'auditorium' and o like in 'on', the 2 are often used interchangeably in ordinary ...
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62 views

Why is “Yosemite” spelled that way?

Well I'm not a native English speaker, but sometimes I get the feeling that English words' pronunciation is random. Why is "Yosemite" is being pronounced as "Yoh-Sem-Ee-Tee" and written as "Yosemite" ...
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295 views

Confused about sound /a/ & /ɔ/ in English Vowel diagram and in English dictionary?

Given this vowel diagram: Could you explain the difference between: /a/ as in five /faɪv/ /ɑː/ as in RP arm /ɑːm/ /ɒ/ as in RP hot /hɒt/ /ɔː/ as in RP law /lɔː/ Is /ɒ/ the same as /ɔː/? ...
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80 views

One-but-love split

I am not a native speaker of English, so I couldn't find the answer by myself. Any help would be appreciated. I have the feeling that the sound written ʌ as in /bʌt/, /wʌn/ and /lʌv/, is pronounced ...
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0answers
50 views

Do you pronounce official as /əˈfiSHəl/?

Do you pronounce official as /əˈfiSHəl/? I thought it was pronounced with an "o" sound as in the word "office" in the beginning of the word instead of a schwa (ə) sound. In the Cambridge dictionary ...
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46 views

Has there ever been “ 'tis ” in AmE?

'Tis which is the contraction of it is. I heard it was contracted due to the way it's pronounced--the accent; because the accent is at the T. So, just wondering if AmE uses this 'tis, where T's tend ...
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48 views

How to pronounce Isabirra (type of cheese)?

Isabirra is a type of cheese. http://www.cheese.com/isabirra/ I couldn't find a source of its pronunciation. Can anybody help me with its pronunciation (in the most layman form). Thanks
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286 views

Words with primary and secondary stress in a phrase

In the phrase "I'm in the same situation" the word "situation" phonetically looks like: [ˌsɪtʃ uˈeɪ ʃən] The first syllable of the word has secondary stress and the third syllable has primary ...
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103 views

Are both “How did you” and “Howdja” used?

How did you get here? [ 'haʊ dɪdʒʊ 'gɛt hɪər? ] I took the bus. How did you get here? [ 'haʊdʒə 'gɛt hɪər? ] I took the train. My question: are both "haʊ dɪdʒʊ" and "haʊdʒə" used in American ...
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64 views

Stress in the question: How about you?

If I transcribe this question "How about you?" to IPA it looks like: [ haʊ əˈbaʊt yu]. The dictionary shows the word "about" with primary stress on its second syllable but I think in my question it ...
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104 views

Transcribing the pronunciation of “emission” on merriam-webster.com

I think the pronunciation of the word, emission, at merriam-webster.com is incorrectly labeled. According to their way of transcribing a pronunciation, their transcription of the pronunciation of the ...
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425 views

Sentence stress: I'm sort of busy right now

I heard this phrase in a TV show: "I'm sort of busy right now". You can listen it here (I cut out the phrase): https://clyp.it/4khla44l Phonetically it looks like: [ɑɪm soərt əv bɪzi raɪt naʊ]. The ...
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59 views

a flap in “video”

I asked here recently about a word "oratory". Somebody told me there is no flap in American English, because a t is before a stressed vowel (second stress). It's right. But why there is no flap in ...
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97 views

What's the correct pronunciation of 'improcerous'?

The word improcerous means 'low' or 'short in stature'. How is it pronounced?