Archive for the ‘Pronunciation’ Category

The Production of English Sounds

How are speech sounds produced?
Physically, the production of speech sounds starts from the lungs. Why I say ‘physically’? It is because as a matter of fact, speech production starts in the brain. The brain creates the message and the lexico-grammatical structures which then are executed by speech organs.
First, lungs produce an air stream and expel […]

English Diphthongs and Triphthongs

• Diphthong: Sounds which consist of a movement or glide from one vowel to another.
• Pure Vowel: A vowel which remains constant, it does not glide.
• Diphthongs have the same length as the long vowels.
• The first part (sound) is much longer and stronger than the second part.
• Example: aɪ in the words ‘eye’ and […]

Same sound, different meanings

It’s been said that English is one of the most difficult languages in the world to learn because it has so many exceptions to its own rules.  One problem students of English as a second language face are homophones – words that sound alike but have entirely different meanings. Another common problem is single words […]


English is not Phonetic
“Pronunciation” refers to the way a word or a language is usually spoken, or the manner in which someone utters a word. If someone said to have “correct pronunciation,” then it refers to both within a particular dialect.
A word can be spoken in different ways by various individuals or groups, depending on […]

Practise Vowels

/a: /  Famous stars smoke cigars in cars and bars! [Audio clip: view full post to listen]
/æ/   That fat cat sat on a rat. Now it’s flat as a mat! [Audio clip: view full post to listen]
/aI/   Mike likes bikes with spikes to ride on ice. [Audio clip: view full post to listen]
/aʊ/  I doubt he’ll […]

Vowels and diphthongs


First, let us take up the 12 pure vowels. When pronounced, they do not change quality and that is why they are termed as ‘monophthongs’. For ease of study, they are given in the form of a table, below:

Note: Please refer this table for the symbolic representation of the vowels according to their respective serial […]