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Questions tagged [phonotactics]

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4
votes
1answer
102 views

Can a plosive consonant in a word be pronounced as a stop consonant?

ESL teachers always tell people to stop the consonant "p b k g t d" if its at the end of a word and the next word also begins with a consonant. But what about words with double consonant in them? ...
0
votes
1answer
67 views

What's an elegent way to describe a phrase that flows nicely because its vowels and consonants alternate?

What know ye of an elegant way to describe a word or phrase that either perfectly or close-to-perfectly alternates vowels and consonants, either in sound or spelling? Usage of such a word might ...
4
votes
5answers
992 views

Are there any English words starting with an “ny” sound? [closed]

Plenty of English words have an "ny" sound (/nj/) in the middle, like onion and canyon. Are there any American English words that start with this sound? My native-speaker intuition tells me this is ...
15
votes
5answers
8k 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 ...
6
votes
3answers
1k views

Dialect “rules” and the pronunciation of individual words

Consider an American actor who is tasked with mastering British Received Pronunciation for an upcoming role. If he has a talent for vocal mimicry, as many actors do, he should have no trouble picking ...
3
votes
2answers
1k views

Can vowels be combined in English without forming diphthongs?

Usually all combinations of vowels in English function as diphthongs. Are there any combinations of vowels in English that do not function as diphthongs? if there are no such examples - I would be ...
10
votes
5answers
3k views

Are there any “-nk-” or “-nc-” words in English where there isn't a “ng” before the “k” sound?

In words like think and lank, we actually seem to be saying "thing-k" and "lang-k." Can anyone thing-k of any words or rules for sound use where this doesn't happen?
43
votes
4answers
18k views

Why does “orange” rhyme with (almost) nothing in English?

Joel Spolsky asked what rhymes with orange. The official answer is, "Nothing," although a creative poet can get close by using half words, just the -nge part or resorting to place names and foreign ...