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    #1

    Poor - pour homonyms?

    Hello?
    Is it just my mishearing or some Americans pronounce the words poor and pour exactly the same way, as /po:r/? If so, could you estimate more or less which region of the USA is that pronunciation peculiar to?

    Thanks in advance.

  1. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Poor - pour homonyms?

    I can't speak for the USA but the vast majority of BrE speakers pronounce them exactly the same way. A few people change their mouth shape a little to separate the "o" from the "u" sound but it's very rare. You can add "paw" to the list of words that sound the same.
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

  2. Barb_D's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: Poor - pour homonyms?

    You can add "pore" but "paw" is completely different in the US. It wouldn't have occurred to me that "paw" was a homophone with "poor" in the UK. I'll pay more attention!
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

  3. probus's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: Poor - pour homonyms?

    Quote Originally Posted by Barb_D View Post
    You can add "pore" but "paw" is completely different in the US. It wouldn't have occurred to me that "paw" was a homophone with "poor" in the UK. I'll pay more attention!

    I haven't the skill to explain this in proper phonetic symbols, but in my opinion the two sound quite different in AmE. "Poor" sounds like "roof" and "food", while "pour" sounds like "for" and "door."

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    #5

    Re: Poor - pour homonyms?

    Quote Originally Posted by Barb_D View Post
    It wouldn't have occurred to me that "paw" was a homophone with "poor" in the UK. I'll pay more attention!
    Like emsr2d2, I pronounce the three words the same way.

  4. Barb_D's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: Poor - pour homonyms?

    Quote Originally Posted by probus View Post
    I haven't the skill to explain this in proper phonetic symbols, but in my opinion the two sound quite different in AmE. "Poor" sounds like "roof" and "food", while "pour" sounds like "for" and "door."
    Where do you live? Poor rhymes with door for me.
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

  5. tzfujimino's Avatar
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    #7

    Re: Poor - pour homonyms?

    For me, "poor" rhymes with "sure".
    (I understand the variants.)

  6. riquecohen's Avatar
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    #8

    Re: Poor - pour homonyms?

    Quote Originally Posted by Barb_D View Post
    Where do you live? Poor rhymes with door for me.
    Interesting. For me, pour rhymes wth door and poor rhymes with sure. (Thanks, tzfujifumino.)

    I have also heard, (and may have also said,) 'paw the coffee' and 'close the daw.'

  7. probus's Avatar
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    #9

    Re: Poor - pour homonyms?

    Quote Originally Posted by Barb_D View Post
    Where do you live? Poor rhymes with door for me.

    I live in Toronto.

  8. Barb_D's Avatar
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    #10

    Re: Poor - pour homonyms?

    So poor people and a cat's purr are the same for you? (Purr rhymes with sure for me.)

    That is so different from here.
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

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