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Thread: bow and row

  1. #1
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    bow and row

    hello,
    does the pronunciation of the underlined words change when they are verb or noun?

    1. In this table the columns represent the income and rows the years.
    2. She loves to row her boat....
    3. They had a row..

    4. A bow is a weapon .....
    5. She refused to bow when they entered.

  2. #2
    Neillythere's Avatar
    Neillythere is offline Senior Member
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    Re: bow and row

    Yes

    1. In this table the columns represent the income and rows the years.
    - similar to rose

    2. She loves to row her boat....
    - similar to rose, but without the zzzzzzzzz sound

    3. They had a row.. (as in argument)
    - rhymes with how, now, (brow-n) cow

    4. A bow is a weapon .....
    - rhymes with mow, low toe, tow, no etc

    5. She refused to bow when they entered.
    - rhymes with all those in 3, above

    Hope this sheds some light on it!

    regards

  3. #3
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    BobK is offline Harmless drudge
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    Re: bow and row

    - strange question. Each diphthong is possible, for each word and each word class. I think you're looking for a rule that isn't there. Check in a dictionary.

    b

  4. #4
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    Re: bow and row

    Neillythere, thanks a lot. so we can say that when bow and row are nouns

    there is schwa in the diphthong. /bəʊ/ and /rəʊ/ but when they are verbs

    no schwa but /aʊ/.

    BobK: I don't think it is a strange question because I've just realized that these two words have different pronunciations being heteronyms.

  5. #5
    Neillythere's Avatar
    Neillythere is offline Senior Member
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    Re: bow and row

    Hi. No, it's not as simple as that:

    They were rowing.. (as in having an argument)
    - the "row" rhymes with how, now, brow(n) cow

    They were rowing.. (as in a boat with oars)
    - the "row" rhymes with mow or rose, but without the zzzzzzzzz sound

    A row of people, shops etc
    - the "row" rhymes with mow or rose, but without the zzzzzzzzz sound

    They are different words and are pronounced differently, although spelt the same.

    You think there's a problem in English? Try Thai:
    "mai mai mai mai mai mai mai mai?"
    This means: "Good wood burns better than old wood, doesn't it?"!!!!!!!!!
    Thai is a tonal language and you can only tell from the rising, falling, high, low or medium tone which word is which!
    There's also no spaces betweem the written words and letters are pronounced differently depending on whether they are at the end of a word or not!

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