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  1. #1
    bibi00 is offline Newbie
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    Default th sound question

    I'm currently trying to fix my "th" sounds (both voiced and voiceless). Can you help me with those questions?

    1. Voiced: In the word "although", is the airflow stopped after saying "al" by the tongue before saying "though" or is the airflow smooth throughout? In the former, the tongue stops the airflow (so there's a bit "exploding" in "though").
    Same with "mother", is the airflow stopped after "ma" by the tongue then "ther"?

    2. Voiceless: In saying "thirty three", is the airflow continuous? Or is the airflow stop before each word as in "/thirty /three". (/ being tongue cutting the airflow)

    I'm confused because I used to pronounce "voiced th" with "d" and "voiceless th" with "f". So, for "d", airflow is always cut off before saying the d sound. And for "f", airflow is never cut off.

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    bibi00 is offline Newbie
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    Default Re: th sound question

    I recorded me saying "th"s here.

    mediafire.com/?5s9tbjt9r9498uh

    This is the passage I read:

    "My brother and I drive each other crazy. Even though he is almost 30 years old, he likes to play pranks on me all the time. Last summer he glued feathers onto my yellow bathing suit while I was asleep on the beach. Another time, he told me he gave away $300 worth of my new clothes to charity. I had to take deep breaths to keep myself calm each time. "

    Please give me some comments on my th pronounciation or if I'm pronouncing other words wrongly.

    Thank you so much!

    PS: Can you hear the differences here in me saying "thank you" with a "f" and a "th" alternating in this voice clip?

    mediafire.com/?38gladu4wh1gciw
    Last edited by bibi00; 28-Aug-2011 at 08:40.

  3. #3
    DontBanMe is offline Member
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    Default Re: th sound question

    Quote Originally Posted by bibi00 View Post
    I recorded me saying "th"s here.

    mediafire.com/?5s9tbjt9r9498uh

    This is the passage I read:

    "My brother and I drive each other crazy. Even though he is almost 30 years old, he likes to play pranks on me all the time. Last summer he glued feathers onto my yellow bathing suit while I was asleep on the beach. Another time, he told me he gave away $300 worth of my new clothes to charity. I had to take deep breaths to keep myself calm each time. "

    Please give me some comments on my th pronounciation or if I'm pronouncing other words wrongly.

    Thank you so much!

    PS: Can you hear the differences here in me saying "thank you" with a "f" and a "th" alternating in this voice clip?

    mediafire.com/?38gladu4wh1gciw
    Well, I don't really get what you're trying to ask.
    By the way,here's the media link http://www.mediafire.com/?5s9tbjt9r9498uh
    Last edited by DontBanMe; 30-Aug-2011 at 13:11.

  4. #4
    birdeen's call is offline VIP Member
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    Default Re: th sound question

    Quote Originally Posted by bibi00 View Post
    I'm currently trying to fix my "th" sounds (both voiced and voiceless). Can you help me with those questions?

    1. Voiced: In the word "although", is the airflow stopped after saying "al" by the tongue before saying "though" or is the airflow smooth throughout? In the former, the tongue stops the airflow (so there's a bit "exploding" in "though").
    Same with "mother", is the airflow stopped after "ma" by the tongue then "ther"?

    2. Voiceless: In saying "thirty three", is the airflow continuous? Or is the airflow stop before each word as in "/thirty /three". (/ being tongue cutting the airflow)

    I'm confused because I used to pronounce "voiced th" with "d" and "voiceless th" with "f". So, for "d", airflow is always cut off before saying the d sound. And for "f", airflow is never cut off.

    Thanks!
    The sound in "though" is // and is called the voiced dental (or interdental) fricative. There is no stopping of the airflow in fricative sounds, as opposed to plosive sounds. The voiced dental plosive is /d/. The airflow is stopped in the middle of this sound, but this is not the sound we use in "though", "altohugh" or "mother".

    The sound in "three" is /θ/ and is called the voiceless dental (or interdental) fricative. There is, therefore, no stopping of the airflow in this sound since it's a fricative like //. The voiceless dental plosive is /t/. The airflow is stopped in the middle of this sound, but this is not the sound we use in "three".

  5. #5
    birdeen's call is offline VIP Member
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    Default Re: th sound question

    Quote Originally Posted by DontBanMe View Post
    Well, I don't really get what you're trying to ask.
    By the way, please post the link properly. I can't see your link. Hehe
    I think bibi00's questions are clear. If you can't understand something, please tell us what causes you trouble. Without that, nothing can be done about your lack of understanding.

  6. #6
    DontBanMe is offline Member
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    Default Re: th sound question

    Quote Originally Posted by birdeen's call View Post
    I think bibi00's questions are clear. If you can't understand something, please tell us what causes you trouble. Without that, nothing can be done about your lack of understanding.
    Well, I think it's probably because I'm not really adept at Phonetics.
    Little did I know that there's an air flow in some sounds.- -like, cutting the air flow or continuous air flow.
    By the way, apparently, you know a thing or two about Phonetics.
    Anyway, I think you've answered her question, havent you? ^-^

  7. #7
    birdeen's call is offline VIP Member
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    Default Re: th sound question

    Quote Originally Posted by DontBanMe View Post
    Well, I think it's probably because I'm not really adept at Phonetics.
    Little did I know that there's an air flow in some sounds.- -like, cutting the air flow or continuous air flow.
    By the way, apparently, you know a thing or two about Phonetics.
    Anyway, I think you've answered her question, havent you? ^-^
    There are no speech sounds without airflow. To make any speech sound in any language in the world, you must make the air flow in your vocal tract.

    I did answer the question but I don't know if I did well. I hope bibi00 is going to tell us.

  8. #8
    bibi00 is offline Newbie
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    Default Re: th sound question

    Quote Originally Posted by birdeen's call View Post
    There are no speech sounds without airflow. To make any speech sound in any language in the world, you must make the air flow in your vocal tract.

    I did answer the question but I don't know if I did well. I hope bibi00 is going to tell us.
    Thanks for the help! I'm still not too sure though. I know what you mean, but in my case, it's hard to explain the concern I'm having.

    Can you take a listen to my recordings? I want to know if I'm on the right track.

    PS: I haven't made enough posts on the forum to post links (you need 15 posts to post a link), hence the links are like that.

  9. #9
    birdeen's call is offline VIP Member
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    Default Re: th sound question

    Quote Originally Posted by bibi00 View Post
    Can you take a listen to my recordings? I want to know if I'm on the right track.
    Unfortunately, I can't because my loudspeakers won't work. I'm sure someone will help you before I can get them fixed.

  10. #10
    grace_c is offline Newbie
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    Default Re: th sound question

    Hi! I've read something useful regarding the pronunciation of the voiced and unvoiced TH from the Barron's American Accent training book.

    The voiced TH is like a D between the teeth. When you pronounce the D in DOUGH, the tongue is in the back of the teeth. But when you pronounce TH in THOUGH, it is like the D sound but a bit lower, forward and between the teeth.

    The unvoiced TH is like an S between the teeth. When you pronounce the S in SING, you hiss behind of the teeth. But when you pronounce TH in THING, it is like the S sound extended through the teeth.

    For both cases, one should dart out the tongue and snap it back very quickly.

    Hope this helps.

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