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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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4 answers
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Stress pattern in "Little Red Riding Hood"

I was surprised to see that the primary stress in the phrase "Little Red Riding Hood" falls into the first syllable in "Riding". I expected the primary stress would fall into the ...
Tran Khanh's user avatar
4 votes
3 answers
487 views

Excuse: verb /ɪkˈskjuːz/ vs noun /ɪkˈskjuːs/ - Does this follow a pattern?

I would like to know if the word excuse, with different pronunciations as a noun and a verb (homographs) follows some kind of phonological pattern of SoP conversion (in either direction) The only ...
GJC's user avatar
  • 2,509
3 votes
1 answer
128 views

Do compounds ending in "college" have initial stress in British English but final stress in American English?

Zwicky (1986, p. 54) claims that compounds ending in college have initial stress in British English but final stress in American varieties. Thus, Brits would say KING'S college but Americans ...
Zoltan's user avatar
  • 493
1 vote
1 answer
81 views

Initial stress-derived nouns rules and patterns

Is this the correct term for words which are nouns when the first syllable is stressed, and verbs when the second syllable is stressed? Examples include PERmit and perMIT, and CONtract, and conTRACT. ...
Ecstatic blender boogie's user avatar
0 votes
0 answers
90 views

Is "bedsit" more commonly primarily stressed on the first or second syllable?

Bedsit is one of those Britishisms that seem mildly extremely amusing (in a way that's not at all intentionally offensive, insulting, derogatory, incendiary) but not too out of the ordinary, so I just ...
Vun-Hugh Vaw's user avatar
  • 5,401
1 vote
3 answers
155 views

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 ...
Geoffrey Chang's user avatar
12 votes
3 answers
1k 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/.
Movies Sea's user avatar
1 vote
0 answers
319 views

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 &...
iwsnmw's user avatar
  • 163
3 votes
2 answers
713 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&...
Yeshua Kin's user avatar
2 votes
2 answers
233 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 ‵...
BoarGules's user avatar
  • 131
1 vote
1 answer
260 views

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 ...
Alim Karaçay's user avatar
1 vote
0 answers
27 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 [closed]

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 ...
blackantt's user avatar
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 (...
Benjamin Wang's user avatar
1 vote
0 answers
189 views

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 ...
Vun-Hugh Vaw's user avatar
  • 5,401
4 votes
1 answer
117 views

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 /...
Shriram's user avatar
  • 155
0 votes
2 answers
114 views

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 ...
zzzgoo's user avatar
  • 287
1 vote
2 answers
522 views

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 ...
xiver77's user avatar
  • 185
16 votes
8 answers
4k 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 "...
FumbleFingers's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
960 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) ...
Petrus Saukkonen's user avatar
1 vote
0 answers
161 views

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

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 ...
IEatMy Pizza's user avatar
0 votes
0 answers
55 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/...
GJC's user avatar
  • 2,509
0 votes
1 answer
89 views

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 ...
user1261710's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
3k 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 ...
user1261710's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
684 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 ...
Matthew Christopher Bartsh's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
251 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 ...
Peter van Emburg's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
74 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 ...
GJC's user avatar
  • 2,509
4 votes
1 answer
482 views

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 ...
user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
54 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!
Katya Kichutkina's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
683 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 ...
Alexander Gelbukh's user avatar
-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?
Serena's user avatar
  • 7
6 votes
2 answers
161 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 ...
Andrew Leach's user avatar
  • 103k
1 vote
2 answers
309 views

-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"....
GJC's user avatar
  • 2,509
0 votes
1 answer
592 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 ...
ONG's user avatar
  • 1
-3 votes
3 answers
4k views

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 ...
Mohsin Raza's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
509 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 ...
Ringil's user avatar
  • 101
8 votes
2 answers
11k views

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 ...
L. F.'s user avatar
  • 199
1 vote
0 answers
69 views

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 ...
Laman's user avatar
  • 35
1 vote
1 answer
138 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 ...
LPH's user avatar
  • 22.7k
-1 votes
1 answer
90 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 ...
user365574's user avatar
0 votes
2 answers
93 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?
Pith's user avatar
  • 193
2 votes
1 answer
100 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 ...
Pith's user avatar
  • 193
1 vote
1 answer
1k 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 ...
Pith's user avatar
  • 193
0 votes
1 answer
356 views

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 ...
mic's user avatar
  • 596
0 votes
1 answer
7k 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?
user223941's user avatar
1 vote
2 answers
4k views

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 (...
Frozen Fire's user avatar
4 votes
1 answer
3k views

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/?
Denis's user avatar
  • 149
1 vote
1 answer
116 views

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-...
Pehnt's user avatar
  • 13
4 votes
2 answers
189 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 ...
Jeremy Harris's user avatar
3 votes
1 answer
2k 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.). ...
Loureiro Gui's user avatar
  • 1,052
2 votes
1 answer
147 views

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."
englishcurious's user avatar