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    #1

    The a sounds in arable, arid, apparel ...

    Hi, how do you pronounce the a sounds (of the General American Accent) for words like arable, arid, apparel and so on.
    I mean, the flat a followed by a single r rather than the double rr.
    Do you pronounce e as in pet, or a as in cat?
    Thank you.

  1. 5jj's Avatar
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    #2

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    #3

    Re: The a sounds in arable, arid, apparel ...

    So, I heard E-rub-el, E-rid, up-E-rel.
    I like the last dictionary. Thank you, 5jj.

  2. BobK's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: The a sounds in arable, arid, apparel ...

    If you heard E, good for you! (Incidentally, the doubling of the 'r' makes no difference. In many languages it does: for example pero ['but' in Spanish] sounds distinct from perro ['dog' in Spanish] - not only in the consonant but also [though not phonemically in the vowel. But in Am. Eng [I think - it's not my language, but I've chosen the example because of your interest in that accent] 'error' (in non-rhotic speech) sounds the same as 'era'.

    b
    Last edited by BobK; 16-Feb-2012 at 14:03.

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    #5

    Re: The a sounds in arable, arid, apparel ...

    When I learned English about 7 years ago in high school in Mainland China, we learned the British English. (Now I have to learn English again. Since most materials I can use are in Am.English, I choose this one.)

    There were a difference between “ar” and “arr”, e.g. Mary ['mɛəri] vs. ['mri],
    and a difference between “ur” and “urr”, e.g. fury ['fjuəri] vs. curry ['kʌri:]
    Maybe the [ɛə] was derived from [ei] and influenced the subsequent [r].
    The doubling of the “r” makes it become a close-syllable.

    As a result of Mary-merry-marry merge, they are pronounced exactly the same for most Americans. But dictionary.reference.com still has them pronounced differently.

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    #6

    Re: The a sounds in arable, arid, apparel ...

    Quote Originally Posted by yangmuye View Post
    Hi, how do you pronounce the a sounds (of the General American Accent) for words like arable, arid, apparel and so on.
    I mean, the flat a followed by a single r rather than the double rr.
    Do you pronounce e as in pet, or a as in cat?
    Thank you.
    In AusE, there sounds use an 'a' as in 'cat'. The recordings sound rather strange to me - except for 'apparel', which is transcribed 'e' but is said as // - ie. the cat vowel.

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    #7

    Re: The a sounds in arable, arid, apparel ...

    Quote Originally Posted by Raymott View Post
    In AusE, there sounds use an 'a' as in 'cat'. The recordings sound rather strange to me - except for 'apparel', which is transcribed 'e' but is said as // - ie. the cat vowel.
    I'm not good at distinguishing /ae/ and /e/.
    But the “apparel” sounds more like a /e/ (and the /e/ is quite open) to me.
    How about the “barrel” in that site? It sounds more like a /ae/.

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    #8

    Re: The a sounds in arable, arid, apparel ...

    Quote Originally Posted by yangmuye View Post
    I'm not good at distinguishing /ae/ and /e/.
    But the apparel sounds more like a /e/ (and the /e/ is quite open) to me.
    How about the barrel in that site? It sounds more like a /ae/.
    Well, my ear is different from yours. "Barrel" sounds like "Beryl" to me.

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    #9

    Re: The a sounds in arable, arid, apparel ...

    Quote Originally Posted by Raymott View Post
    Well, my ear is different from yours. "Barrel" sounds like "Beryl" to me.
    Sorry to hear that

    I listened to some more words on macmillandictionary.com (You have to set the your default dictionary to the Am.Eng first)

    Barrel sounds like /brəl/,
    Barrier sounds like /ˈbɛriər/,
    Beryl, which is transcribed /ˈberəl/, and pronounced /ˈberəl/, but sounds a little close to /bɜrəl/ to me.


    I have to train my ears.
    Last edited by yangmuye; 17-Feb-2012 at 00:51. Reason: typo

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    #10

    Re: The a sounds in arable, arid, apparel ...

    Quote Originally Posted by yangmuye View Post
    Sorry to hear that

    I listened to some more words on macmillandictionary.com (You have to set the your default dictionary to the Am.Eng first)

    Barrel sounds like /brəl/,
    Barrier sounds like /ˈbɛriər/,
    Beryl, which is transcribed /ˈberəl/, and pronounced /ˈberəl/, but sounds a little close to /bɜrəl/ to me.


    I have to training my ears.
    When I said that your ear was different from mine, I wasn't implying it was inferior, or needed training. If I went to live in America, it would be my ears that needed training.
    Besides, if an American said any of those words, I'd probably know what they meant from the context.

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