Questions tagged [stress]

Stress refers to which syllable or syllables in a word or phrase are "accented" or receive the most emphasis in their pronunciation.

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3 answers
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Why are the words “geography” and “geomancy” stressed differently?

Geography is stressed on the 3rd last syllable while Geomancy on the 1st and 3rd. Why is this the case? Is my guess true that a word having entered the English language for a long time would tend to ...
12 votes
3 answers
966 views

Is /ʌ/ really a stressed schwa, appearing only in stressed syllables?

If /ʌ/ occurs only in stressed syllables, why does punctilious /pʌŋkˈtɪliəs/ have it in an unstressed syllable? Same with upbraid /ʌpˈbreɪd/.
1 vote
0 answers
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Pronunciation of "es" at the end of the words [duplicate]

Is there a some of kind of rule affecting the pronunciation of "es" coming at the end of a word? In some words I hear "-es" as "ɪz" and in some others I hear it as a &...
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0 votes
1 answer
115 views

Is there a term for when in Indian English stress is placed on the word "the" before a noun?

I often hear speakers of Indian English place stress-accent on the word "the", with a pause before finishing a sentence with a noun. There's a raised pitch and stress on the word "the&...
2 votes
2 answers
109 views

“Upset”: different stress pattern for attributive and predicative use

Today I came across an English adjective which has one stress pattern when used predicatively: her cat died: she's very up‵set, and the other when used attributively: he won't be coming: he has an ‵...
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1 vote
1 answer
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Do prefixes change the prounciation of stem?

I know some words which have suffixes and these suffixes change the pronunciation of the stem. For example sociopath sociopathy (you can check the pronunciations and you will realize that there are a ...
1 vote
0 answers
25 views

What are the relative stress order among noun, adj., verb., adv., negative word when they meet in a sentence? Is there grammar sentence stress rules

the example sentences are, "the dog ate a piece of black meat quickly. " , "Tom bought an extremally interesting book in the store for his brother." I hope get the default sentence ...
8 votes
1 answer
1k views

Why does “revocable” have first-syllable stress?

Read the following “canonical” sets of related words, and notice the (uncontroversial) stress patterns: Renew, renewable, renewably Regret, regrettable, regrettably Repeat, repeatable, repeatably (...
1 vote
0 answers
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What could possibly cause the stress shift in adverbs ending in -arily compared to adjectives ending in -ary?

While adjectives ending in -ary (British English /əri/, American English /eri/) never have stress on the second last syllable (the /e/ in AmE, and obviously the /ə/ in BrE), their derivative adverbs ...
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2 votes
0 answers
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Pronunciation of 'Taxman'

Like Postman /ˈpəʊstmən/, Policeman /pəˈliːsmən/ and Fireman /faɪəmən/, one would assume that Taxman would also be pronounced with a schwa in the man. But this is not the case and it is pronounced /...
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2 answers
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The stress of the prefix 'inter-'

In some words, the stress is on the first syllable of inter, for stance, intercourse, interview, internet, interval. However, there are also some words, in which the stress is on the second syllable ...
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1 vote
2 answers
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How is "composite" as a verb pronounced in British English?

I always pronounce "composite" as COM-posite when it is used as an adjective or a noun. But in some technical contexts as "alpha compositing" it is also used as a verb, and in this ...
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16 votes
8 answers
3k views

Why is emphatic "Yes, I know THAT" okay, but not "Yes, I know IT"?

In the context of this ELL question asking about using pronoun "it" as an object, it struck me that whereas it's perfectly natural to place heavy stress for emphasis on the "...
0 votes
1 answer
187 views

How to recognize stressed and unstressed syllables? (E.g. admit vs limit) [duplicate]

I wonder is there any simple rules to recognize is a syllable stressed or unstressed. When I try to pronounce any word, I don't recognize any of the following features of a stressed syllable: 1) ...
1 vote
0 answers
109 views

How many allophones possible of phoneme /ə/ are there in American English?

I am an ESL student. I want to speak American English fluently. Due to influence of my local dialect in my country, I only discover that there is [ə ɐ ɪə ɑ] doubtably according to my ear, and native ...
0 votes
0 answers
39 views

"Fairly/Quite": stresses for "not exactly small" and "almost huge."

When spoken, the meaning can vary with the tone of voice and stress: He was fairly/quite big can mean anything from "not exactly small" to "almost huge". https://en.wiktionary.org/...
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0 votes
1 answer
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Syllable stress of the word begonias

I am currently studying syllable stress. When I look at the word begonia we can split it into 3 syllables with the stress on 'go'. E.g bih-gohn-yuh. However, the plural form of the word gives me 4 ...
1 vote
1 answer
675 views

iambic pentameter, stress, and monosyllables

I am studying poetry structure and I am focusing on iambic pentameter at the moment. From what I have read, there are 10 syllables per line and 5 stressed and 5 unstressed syllables. It goes ...
2 votes
1 answer
659 views

Is modern 'five countries' English the only type of English with stress patterns that change across the entire word depending on the suffix?

The capital letters represent where the main stress in each word lies TELephone, telePHONic, teLEphony. PHOTograph, photoGRAphic, photOgraphy. biOLogy, bioLOGical. What about in the past, including ...
2 votes
1 answer
233 views

syllable stress in pronunciation of frequently used expressions [closed]

I think that the first case in which stress in a frequently used expression starting to gnaw at my mind occurred after hearing someone pronouncing a noun adjunct in a way deviating from the way I was ...
0 votes
1 answer
64 views

In the example, who do the pronouns she and her refer to?

Page 277 of Beyond the Segment: Stress, Rhythm and Intonation reads Jane said she’d been delighted long enough and Margaret offended her. The nuclear stress rule tells us that nuclear stress falls ...
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4 votes
1 answer
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Why are the vowels in "harmony", "harmonic" and "harmonious" pronounced differently?

The "O" in all these words represents a different vowel: Harmony → /ˈhɑː.mə.ni/ Harmonic → /hɑːˈmɒn.ɪk/ Harmonious → /hɑːˈməʊ.ni.əs/ (UK pronunciations from Cambridge Dictionary) I know ...
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1 vote
1 answer
53 views

Comment on the accentual structure of the following word: overvalue

I tried to describe the stress pattern of the word overvalue, but the only thing that I found is that it has the secondary stress. How to describe it fully? Thanks in advance!
0 votes
1 answer
395 views

Stress in the -ing form of verbs with initial-stress-derived nouns

It seems some verbs change the stressed syllable in the -ing form: proCESS -- PROcessing transPORT -- TRANsporting and some do not: diRECT -- diRECTing proVIDE -- proVIDing Is this related with ...
-1 votes
0 answers
86 views

Is “an historical” correct? [duplicate]

Why do some people say or write an historical but not an ham sandwich or an hint?
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5 votes
2 answers
130 views

Why can't we say "... of its"?

In a comment on the question Is there any rule regarding when not to use the pattern "noun phrase + of + possessive pronoun"?, such as "a friend of his", John Lawler writes First ...
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1 vote
2 answers
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-IZE: unstressed (though strong)

According to the Longman Pronunciation Dictionary -IZE /aɪz/: This suffix is unstressed (though strong) in Received Pronunciation and General American, but sometimes stressed in other varieties"....
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0 votes
1 answer
297 views

Each sentence is emphasising a different message depending on the word stress?

I need to talk to our lecturer tomorrow. I need to talk to our lecturer tomorrow. I need to talk to our lecturer tomorrow. I need to talk to our lecturer tomorrow. I need to talk to our lecturer ...
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-3 votes
3 answers
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Why is chocolate pronounced as CHOK-LATE and not CHO-KO-LATE? [closed]

So there are many words in which one syllable gets reduced. For example, chocolate could be pronounced as CHO-KO-LATE but instead it's pronounced as CHOK-LATE, it's now 2 syllable word. Another ...
0 votes
1 answer
318 views

Reason for pronunciation differences between different meanings of offense

At least in American English, the word offense has two different pronunciations used for two different meanings: I took offense at his joke The team's offense is quite good How did this ...
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6 votes
2 answers
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What is the correct pronunciation of "elytra"?

The word elytra refers to one of the anterior wings in beetles and some other insects that serve to protect the posterior pair of functional wings according to Merriam-Webster. The word is also ...
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1 vote
0 answers
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Syllables and word stressing [closed]

I am an english learner but when it comes to syllables and streesing, a lot of words give me problems in pronoucing them. When I was taught syllables and streesing they told me that every word has ...
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1 vote
1 answer
114 views

Is the repetition of a pronoun instead of stressing it possible?

In English it is usual to stress a personal pronoun or a noun so as to introduce a departure from the preceding spell of conversation in which is mentioned another agent in relation to the same ...
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-1 votes
1 answer
86 views

Should the first instance of an author-made word in a work use an accent mark? [closed]

If an author makes up proper nouns for their text, for example, Bilgebauth, should the very first instance in the text be typeset with an accent: Bilgebáuth to inform the reader of the proper stress ...
0 votes
2 answers
77 views

How do different stresses change the meaning of the sentence "I don't know"

If one says "I don't know" in 3 different ways, like, when they stress "I", "don't" and "know" respectively. How does the meaning of this sentence change?
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2 votes
1 answer
96 views

How does the pitch change through the phrase "a gorgeous young model"?

When one pronounces the phrase a gorgeous young model in a very normal way (without any special stress to emphasize a specific meaning), which word will be said in the highest pitch, which word ...
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1 vote
1 answer
858 views

How to stress Phrasal verb?

Many people told me that the particle is stressed when it comes to Intransitive Phrasal Verb. (like "warm up" in this video https://youtu.be/9I1DBOJERns?t=3) (Text: Winter's over, the weather's ...
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0 votes
1 answer
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Why is pianist usually stressed on the /pi/?

"Pianist" is usually pronounced /ˈpiənɪst/, with /piˈænɪst/ as an acceptable variant only in the US and Canada, according to Wiktionary. I'm not sure why the pronunciation /ˈpiənɪst/ would be more ...
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0 votes
1 answer
5k views

Which syllable is primarily stressed in the word "television"?

I was taught to stress the first syllable of "television", but some dictionaries stress the syllable before -sion. My other question is "Does stressing VI before -sion exist in AmE?
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1 vote
2 answers
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for words ending in "ing", what parts are stressed?

For words ending in the -ing suffix, is the suffix stressed? Unstressed? Does adding the -ing suffix affect the stress of the other syllables? Example: (u is untressed, ' is stressed) Deteriorate is (...
4 votes
1 answer
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Is there any case when it's correct to pronounce the word "police" with the stress on the first syllable?

Is there any case when it's correct to pronounce the word police with the stress on the first syllable: /ˈpəlis/?
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1 vote
1 answer
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Sentence stress

I'm struggling to understand the sentence stress in the following sentences: Why don’t we watch a comedy film? I'm pretty sure that 'don't', 'watch', 'comedy', and 'film' are stressed; why is a wh-...
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4 votes
2 answers
172 views

Should "ohmmeter" be stressed on the first or second syllables, or both?

Question: Which syllable or syllables are stressed in the word ohmmeter? Context: I tried to say the word ohmmeter out loud today and realized I am unsure of the correct pronunciation. The double m ...
3 votes
1 answer
1k views

Where is the stress of the noun "Portuguese"?

Studying suffixes I've learned that "-ESE" is a strong suffix, therefore it holds the main stress when it's added to a word (e.g. China -> Chinese; Japan -> Japanese; journal -> journalese; etc.). ...
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2 votes
1 answer
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If a speaker clearly emphasizes a word or a term, should it be written down in quotation marks?

If a speaker clearly emphasizes a word or a term, should it be written down in quotation marks? e.g. Everyone's so intimidated by "big data."
1 vote
1 answer
112 views

Correct stress when pronouncing "covet"

When pronounce word "covet" should I give stress to "o" or to "e"? I searched Emma Saying channel for this word and there are two videos with different pronunciation so I'm not sure if this source is ...
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1 vote
3 answers
1k views

Why is the accent on "petrol" and "patrol" different?

Petrol and patrol are written very similarly, though completely and obviously different in meaning. My question here is actually about the accent on these words. Why is petrol stressed on PE, and ...
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0 votes
1 answer
365 views

How would changing the stress position in descriptive phrases change the meaning?

Usually in a phrase composed of an adjective followed by a noun, the noun gets the most stress, and in a phrasal verb like (go on, sit down, stand up) the preposition gets the most stress. However ...
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2 votes
1 answer
464 views

How can I predict the stressed syllable in proper/brand/trademark/foreign nouns?

I often encounter nouns that I hear of for the first time, and I can not determine which syllable to stress. Unfortunately, I can not find most of these nouns in dictionaries to check the stressed ...
0 votes
1 answer
86 views

How to stress the subject in a question beginning with "why"?

English isn't my native language, so my question might seem dumb to you, but I wanna be sure. I'm writing some fiction, but I have some problems with syntax... Here's the question at issue : "why is ...
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