Results 1 to 7 of 7
  1. #1
    sky753 is offline Senior Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Student or Learner
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • China
      • Current Location:
      • China
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Posts
    773
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default About the pronouciation of "who had " , "who is"

    Hello Everyone,

    I am listening to English news these days and I am confused about the pronouciation of some words: like " who had", "who is" etc. "who is " is listened as "with" and "who had" is as "would" by me. I am wondering here whether there are some rules for such pronouciations? Or I just have to listen to them many times so that I can be familar with them because the phrases are spoken very fast?

    Waiting for your replies!

    Thanks and Best Regards

    Sky
    Last edited by sky753; 23-Nov-2007 at 08:14.

  2. #2
    2006 is offline Banned
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Other
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • Canada
      • Current Location:
      • Canada
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Posts
    4,161
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: About the pronouciation of "who had " , "who is"

    What country is the English news coming from?

  3. #3
    sky753 is offline Senior Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Student or Learner
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • China
      • Current Location:
      • China
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Posts
    773
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: About the pronouciation of "who had " , "who is"

    Quote Originally Posted by 2006 View Post
    What country is the English news coming from?
    Thank you very your reply!

    From US or UK , I can't remember it clearly!

  4. #4
    2006 is offline Banned
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Other
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • Canada
      • Current Location:
      • Canada
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Posts
    4,161
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: About the pronouciation of "who had " , "who is"

    Quote Originally Posted by sky753 View Post
    Hello Everyone,

    I am listening to English news these days and I am confused about the pronouciation of some words: like " who had", "who is" etc. "who is " is listened as "with" and "who had" is as "would" by me. I am wondering here whether there are some rules for such pronouciations? Or I just have to listen to them many times so that I can be familar with them because the phrases are spoken very fast?

    Waiting for your replies!

    Thanks and Best Regards

    Sky
    Well UK and US pronunciation can be different.
    In 'Canadian pronunciation' "who" sounds very similar to the hu in hu tong, but there is no special tone.
    "who is" is two words and is not at all similar to "with". Likewise, "who had" is very different from "would".
    It is hard to teach pronunciation by writing; at least, I can't do that for you.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Posts
    1,554
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: About the pronouciation of "who had " , "who is"

    Well, when native speakers use language normally, they don't pronounce every word clearly and distinctly -- they would sound like robots if they did.

    Here's what I think is happening:

    "who is" -- when native speakers pronounce this in normal speech, they usually put a "w" sound between "who" and "is", to make it easier to pronounce: "whowis". Many speakers also pronounce the first syllable "who" very lightly, so perhaps you just can't hear it very clearly, leaving "wis". Finally, as a non-native speaker, you probably can't hear the difference between "s" and "th" -- a native speaker can hear this difference very clearly.

    "who had" -- perhaps this is being pronounced as the contraction "who'd". But it could also be a similar process to the above: the "w" sound is inserted ("whowad"), then the first syllable is dropped, leaving "wad". In normal speech, this is then weakened even further to "wood".

    Normally, word which have only a grammatical function are shortened in this way in normal speech; and in English (and some other European languages), we always prefer to pronounce words together, not separately. It's only when we need to emphasise something that we speak very clearly:

    "Mr Freud, who IS a psychologist after all..." -- here, we are emphasising the point that Mr Freud really is a psychologist, and so he knows what he is talking about.

    This is why learning to speak like a native speaker is so very difficult: you may know all the grammar and all the vocabulary, but there are many, many complicated rules like this which the text books don't teach you.

    But don't worry. You understood what the words should have been, so you do know the grammar. And native speakers will understand you perfectly if you pronounce every word clearly -- you will just sound like a foreigner, but that's OK: you only need to worry about this if you want to be a spy . Keep listening to English on the news and on the radio, and speak as much as you can with native speakers, and your pronunciation should become more natural.

  6. #6
    sky753 is offline Senior Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Student or Learner
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • China
      • Current Location:
      • China
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Posts
    773
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: About the pronouciation of "who had " , "who is"

    Quote Originally Posted by rewboss View Post
    Well, when native speakers use language normally, they don't pronounce every word clearly and distinctly -- they would sound like robots if they did.

    Here's what I think is happening:

    "who is" -- when native speakers pronounce this in normal speech, they usually put a "w" sound between "who" and "is", to make it easier to pronounce: "whowis". Many speakers also pronounce the first syllable "who" very lightly, so perhaps you just can't hear it very clearly, leaving "wis". Finally, as a non-native speaker, you probably can't hear the difference between "s" and "th" -- a native speaker can hear this difference very clearly.

    "who had" -- perhaps this is being pronounced as the contraction "who'd". But it could also be a similar process to the above: the "w" sound is inserted ("whowad"), then the first syllable is dropped, leaving "wad". In normal speech, this is then weakened even further to "wood".

    Normally, word which have only a grammatical function are shortened in this way in normal speech; and in English (and some other European languages), we always prefer to pronounce words together, not separately. It's only when we need to emphasise something that we speak very clearly:

    "Mr Freud, who IS a psychologist after all..." -- here, we are emphasising the point that Mr Freud really is a psychologist, and so he knows what he is talking about.

    This is why learning to speak like a native speaker is so very difficult: you may know all the grammar and all the vocabulary, but there are many, many complicated rules like this which the text books don't teach you.

    But don't worry. You understood what the words should have been, so you do know the grammar. And native speakers will understand you perfectly if you pronounce every word clearly -- you will just sound like a foreigner, but that's OK: you only need to worry about this if you want to be a spy . Keep listening to English on the news and on the radio, and speak as much as you can with native speakers, and your pronunciation should become more natural.
    Dear Rewboss,

    Thank you so much for your detailed and exact explanations. What you have introduced here has sloved the problem which's confused me for several years. Many other English learners in China, like me, have encountered the same trouble. I am wondering here whether you can tell me the website or book, that details similar pronouciation difficulty?

    Thanks and Best Regards

    Sky

  7. #7
    riverkid is offline Banned
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Posts
    3,064
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: About the pronouciation of "who had " , "who is"

    Yes, Sky, I agree with you. That was an excellent reply, Rewboss!

Similar Threads

  1. I wonder "who she is" or "who is she"
    By seagirl in forum General Language Discussions
    Replies: 10
    Last Post: 14-Aug-2005, 17:42

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •