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    #1

    How many vowel phonemes are there in English pronunciation?

    How many vowel phonemes you think are there now in standard (RP or General American ) English pronunciation?

  1. Charlie Bernstein's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: How many vowel phonemes are there in English pronunciation?

    Plenty!
    I'm not a teacher. I speak American English. I've tutored writing at the University of Southern Maine and have done a good deal of copy editing and writing, occasionally for publication.

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    #3

    Re: How many vowel phonemes are there in English pronunciation?

    My question especially concerns a changing trend in vowel phonemes of American English.
    Please see the Pronunciation Symbols used by the Merriam-Webster English dictionary.
    http://www.merriam-webster.com/pronsymbols.html

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    #4

    Re: How many vowel phonemes are there in English pronunciation?

    Dictionaries often use their own systems.

  2. Charlie Bernstein's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: How many vowel phonemes are there in English pronunciation?

    Quote Originally Posted by TaiwanPofLee View Post
    My question especially concerns a changing trend in vowel phonemes of American English.
    Please see the Pronunciation Symbols used by the Merriam-Webster English dictionary.
    http://www.merriam-webster.com/pronsymbols.html
    Hi, Taiwan! Thanks for the link. I looked at it. What are you wondering? What trend do you mean? How important is the number?
    Last edited by Charlie Bernstein; 28-Apr-2015 at 23:30.
    I'm not a teacher. I speak American English. I've tutored writing at the University of Southern Maine and have done a good deal of copy editing and writing, occasionally for publication.

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    #6

    Re: How many vowel phonemes are there in English pronunciation?

    Quote Originally Posted by Charlie Bernstein View Post
    Hi, Taiwan! Thanks for the link. I looked at it. What are you wondering? What trend do you mean? How important is the number?
    Hi, Charlie!

    The Americans are merging, or have merged, the pronunciations of letters a as in abut, u as in abut and e as in kitten into one same phoneme. So Obama said to Elizabeth that her mother was late for the bus.

  3. Charlie Bernstein's Avatar
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    #7

    Re: How many vowel phonemes are there in English pronunciation?

    Quote Originally Posted by TaiwanPofLee View Post
    Hi, Charlie!

    The Americans are merging, or have merged, the pronunciations of letters a as in abut, u as in abut and e as in kitten into one same phoneme. So Obama said to Elizabeth that her mother was late for the bus.
    Oh!

    Not kitten. That's a schwa before the n. What we say is more like kitt'n,* not at all like kittuhn. The other three, yes. It's an uh sound in all of them.

    That's not new. I'm 63, and I can't remember it ever being any other way. (And I should know! I'm an Uh-merican!)

    * Actually, we tend to swallow the T sound somewhat when it's in the middle of a word, so kitten is almost ki'n, with a sort of catch or hiccup where the T should be. In many words, we pronounce a T like a D. For instance, in American English, metal and medal are pronounced the same, and city rhymes with giddy.

    Though the British can be as sloppy with English as anyone (after all, they invented it!), they tend to be much more precise with their T's. Their bottles are never boddles!
    Last edited by Charlie Bernstein; 29-Apr-2015 at 15:05.
    I'm not a teacher. I speak American English. I've tutored writing at the University of Southern Maine and have done a good deal of copy editing and writing, occasionally for publication.

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    #8

    Re: How many vowel phonemes are there in English pronunciation?

    British "bottles" can be Bah uls. Be careful with generalizations.

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    #9

    Re: How many vowel phonemes are there in English pronunciation?

    I'd write it as /bɒʔəlz/ or /bɔʔəlz/. That is, forgetting about the glottal stop, the 'o' is not an /ah/ from my experience; but a proper English 'o' (as in 'stop') or a non-rhotic 'or'.

    For me, it's Americans who use /ah/ for 'o', as in 'Stahp, or ah'll shoot!'. (OK, I got that from movies; I don't know if your authorities still give warnings).
    Last edited by Raymott; 29-Apr-2015 at 19:00. Reason: typo

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    #10

    Re: How many vowel phonemes are there in English pronunciation?

    You might get a warning if you're white.

    Getting back to the point, even the laziest Estuary English speaker still pronounces the 'o' in /bɒʔəlz/.

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