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  1. fabio409's Avatar
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    #1

    Pronunciation of "the"

    Hi,

    I've just learned the following rule concerning the pronunciation of the definite article "the" in American English:

    "definite article \especially before consonant sounds thə, before vowel sounds thē,4 is often ˈthē\"
    Source: http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/the

    Does the same rule apply in Bristish English?

    Cambridge Dictionary doesn't help much:

    "determinerweak /ə, i/UK strong /iː/"
    Source: http://dictionary.cambridge.org/us/d...portuguese/the

    Thank you!
    Last edited by fabio409; 19-Jul-2016 at 15:00.

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    #2

    Re: Pronunciation of "the"

    It's the same in British English. Also, note that the dictionary does not give this as a rule, but the general pattern.

  2. Skrej's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: Pronunciation of "the"

    You will also hear variation on how the 'th' digraph is pronounced. At least in AmE, you'll hear it as the voiceless θ and the voiced .

    So you may hear /ə/ and /θē/, but also /θə/ and /ē/.

    I think I tend to stick to the first pair (although I've now thought about it enough to be uncertain). You can click on the corresponding symbols here to see animations and hear examples of the voiced and voiceless 'th' sounds.
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    #4

    Re: Pronunciation of "the"

    A voiceless /th/ in "the" would sound bizarre to my AmE ears, whether the following word began with a vowel or a consonant sound.
    I am not a teacher.

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    #5

    Re: Pronunciation of "the"

    I use a voiced sound for both in BrE.

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