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    #1

    Stress in phrases

    Hi,

    Take "blue car|" for example, if we only stress the word blue, then it is a set phrase; but if the word car is stressed, not "blue", it is a description, which means the car is blue, not red.

    So if that is the case, why is that so. Why do people want to emphasize the car is blue but stress the word car.

    Thank you!

    Tay

  1. JohnParis's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Stress in phrases

    Stress on blue indicates the color of the car.
    Stress on car indicates that it was that particular thing (as opposed to a motorcycle, or a scooter or a truck).


    John

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    #3

    Re: Stress in phrases

    Quote Originally Posted by yanx View Post
    Take "blue car" for example, if we only stress the word "blue", then it is a set phrase;
    I think we need to stop there. "blue" car is not a 'set phrase'. If we stress "blue", then we are emphasising the colour.

    but if the word "car" is stressed, not "blue", it is a description, which means the car is blue, not red.
    No. If we stress the word "car", then we are emphasising that it is a car, not, for example, a boat.

    So if that is the case, why is that so.? Why do people want to emphasize the car is blue but stress the word "car".? They don't.
    I think you are confusing two different things.

    In such words as blackbird, blueprint, greehouse, redbrick (BrE), brownstone (AmE), etc, where the noun is constructed from an adjective and a noun, the word stress in the noun so constructed is on the first syllable.

    When we have an adjective 'describing' a noun, as in a black bird, a red brick, then the two words are fairly equally stressed. If we wish to contrast the adjective with another adjective, then the adjective will be stressed. Similarly, if we wish to contrast the noun with another noun, then the noun will be stressed.

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    #4

    Re: Stress in phrases

    Quote Originally Posted by 5jj View Post
    I think you are confusing two different things.

    In such words as blackbird, blueprint, greehouse, redbrick (BrE), brownstone (AmE), etc, where the noun is constructed from an adjective and a noun, the word stress in the noun so constructed is on the first syllable.

    When we have an adjective 'describing' a noun, as in a black bird, a red brick, then the two words are fairly equally stressed. If we wish to contrast the adjective with another adjective, then the adjective will be stressed. Similarly, if we wish to contrast the noun with another noun, then the noun will be stressed.
    Thanks again!!! Just misled by some article.

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