I tried pronouncing the phrase: "I'm expecting someone". Phonetically it looks like:

[aɪm ɪkspɛkt ɪŋ sʌmwʌn]

I perceive some stress on the second syllable of expecting and the first syllable of someone. I marked them with bold.

The context is something like this:

Person A: Well, I have to get home. I'm expecting someone.

Do you hear the same stress pattern as I am in a similar context? I'm not a native speaker. If yes, are the stresses equal on spɛkt and sʌm ?

Any suggestion would be appreciated.


1 Answer 1


I apologise for not being able to match you in the phonetic alphabet. I never learned it.

But no, I don't hear the same stress as you. I would stress the "expect" but not the "some". Why would one want to stress "someone" – to create a contrast with possible "something" or "non-human"? Hardly. Whereas one would stress "expecting" because your sentence is actually an excuse for not doing what someone else wants, so you stress the activity in which you will actually be engaged, and they have to suck it down.


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