I'm trying to find a list of all syllables (ideally just syllables that appear at the start of words in english).
A list of the 322 most common syllables in the 5,000 most frequent English words can be found at:
see page 35-36.
These are taken from prior research by Sakiey & Martin
Perhaps this will help.
We are developing a new note-taking/shorthand system called Dash (r) that incorporates special signs for common syllables. John Klein - email@example.com
There's no precise number of syllables, because the exact segment inventory and exact details of where speakers place syllable boundaries varies slightly from speaker to speaker.
But it's easy to show that the overall number must be hugely higher than 1,000.
As a huge oversimplification, if English had 15 possible choices of syllable onset, 15 possible choices of syllable nucleus and 15 possible choices of syllable coda, then that would give you 3,375 different combinations. That's hugely simplistic, because both onset and coda can have more than one segment, and there are generally more than 15 choices per segment, plus the choices are interdependent. And this estimate doesn't deal with issues of stress, or with how closely coarticulated two segments have to be to be considered the "same syllable" (in "goodbye", do you say that the first syllable ends in a [d] or a [b]?). But you get the idea.
So on the surface, if you have 1,000 words, you may as well just record the words independently.
Now, not all syllables occur with equal frequency. So you could have a look at mapping of (first syllable, count) for your particular vocabulary and see if there are any common first syllables that make it worth recording these and using multiple times.
Note also that because of effects of coarticulation, the "same syllable" isn't actually pronounced identically in all cases. A simplistic example would be my case of the pronunciation of the "d" in "goodbye" vs "good night". A more complex case could be e.g. the interaction between the vowel height of the first syllable and the second. I appreciate you may choose to ignore this issue, but you shouldn't ignore it out of ignorance. (Interestingly, I seem to recall that some speech pathologies may actually involve impairment of coarticulation...)
From my own research I have over 10,000 single syllable words in English. This includes common names and adopted foreign words (like Wayne, Wong and schnapps). Note that this count is based on the base word plus its variations (such as the plural, possessive, etc.).
I am representing them phonetically in RP and will eventually be able to determine how many distinct sounds there are. At present I have about 80 initial consonant clusters, 20 middle vowels and 70 final clusters.
Thank you for your interest in this question.
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