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  1. *Sama*'s Avatar
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    #1

    Silent letters

    Hi everybody,

    I want to know when I consider a letter is silent if it's the first time to read and see. Is there any specific rules? and why even do we write silent letters if we don't use and pronounce them?
    Ex: LisTen, Psychological, Hour,iSland, aiSle and so on.

    And are all the wrods starting with KN like know, knife, knock The K not pronounced?

    Thank you in advance.

  2. chester_100's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Silent letters

    Quote Originally Posted by *Sama* View Post
    Hi everybody,

    I want to know when I consider a letter is silent if it's the first time to read and see. Is there any specific rules?
    Phonotactics: acceptable arrangement of sounds in a language. Not all combinations are natural in a certain language.
    ps, gn, kn, bt (doubt), ts (tsunami), pf and ect.


    and why even do we write silent letters if we don't use and pronounce them?
    English is under the influence of such languages as French, Greek, and Latin. The morphological structure of these words were transferred to English while their phonological information didn't. In other words, English itself decides about the sounds.


    Ex: LisTen, Psychological, Hour,iSland, aiSle and so on.

    And are all the wrods starting with KN like know, knife, knock The K not pronounced?
    As far as I know, that's the case.

    Thank you in advance.
    C

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    #3

    Re: Silent letters

    Quote Originally Posted by *Sama* View Post
    Hi everybody,

    I want to know when I consider a letter is silent if it's the first time to read and see. Is there any specific rules? and why even do we write silent letters if we don't use and pronounce them?
    Ex: LisTen, Psychological, Hour,iSland, aiSle and so on.

    And are all the wrods starting with KN like know, knife, knock The K not pronounced?

    Thank you in advance.
    ********** NOT A TEACHER **********


    Hello, Sama.

    (1) What a wonderful question.

    (2) I read that hundreds of years ago, the people in England

    DID pronounce the "k" in words such as "knife." So "knife" used to be

    pronounced with three syllables.

    (3) Over time, the English people decided to pronounce it the

    way we pronounce it today, but they never changed the

    spelling.

    (4) English spelling, of course, is very "interesting."

    (5) There have been many people who have tried to change

    the spelling of certain words, but I think that most English speakers

    are happy. Maybe they just get used to it.

    (a) For example, many years ago, an American newspaper started to

    spell "night" as "nite." But most people like "night." And people use

    "thru" usually only in "drive-thru" window at the restaurant when a driver

    can drive up to a window and order food. S/he never has to leave the

    car!!! But we still usually use "through."

    (6) There are many books and Web articles about English spelling.

    The more you read, the better your spelling will be because your

    eyes will become accustomed to certain spellings.

    ***** Thank you.
    Last edited by TheParser; 08-Jul-2010 at 20:53.

  3. *Sama*'s Avatar
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    #4

    Re: Silent letters

    Thank you guys.
    A new information I got here.

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