Page 1 of 2 1 2 Last
Results 1 to 10 of 14
  1. Member
    Student or Learner
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • China
      • Current Location:
      • China

    • Join Date: Feb 2019
    • Posts: 336
    #1

    "Where's he?" vs. "Where's it?"

    I learnt that in a sentence Americans would actually leave out "h" in "he" which is pronounced as /i:/ instead of /hi:/, and the word "it" is often pronounced as /i/ instead of /it/ which is stated in English dictionaries, unless the speakers do want to stress "he" or "it", then I can clearly hear "h" in "he" and /t/ in it.

    If the above is correct, how do Americans distinguish the sentences between "where is he" and "where's is it"? Does it depend on the context?

    Are these same in the Queen's English?

    It would especially help me improve my listening if I consciously notice these subtleties. Now listening is more important than speaking to me. Sometimes, some words are very easy and simple to me if they are written, but I don't exactly know what speakers are talking about; sometimes I thought I clearly understood but now I guess it was my subconscious mind that did the job for me and automatically filled the right word in the context.

    Edit :Add the link:
    https://jia666-my.sharepoint.com/:v:...-bqLA?e=an3Vmj

    P.S. I cannot upload the file as attachment because it is around 2.3M that is beyond the limitation of the each attachment on UingEnglish, so I uploaded to One Drive.
    Last edited by tree123; 06-Jun-2019 at 06:45.
    Please correct my writing if there's any grammatical solecism.

  2. VIP Member
    Retired English Teacher
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • Europe
      • Current Location:
      • Czech Republic

    • Join Date: Jul 2015
    • Posts: 17,311
    #2

    Re: "Where's he?" vs. "Where's it?"

    Quote Originally Posted by tree123 View Post
    I learnt that in a sentence Americans would actually leave out "h" in "he" which is pronounced as /i:/ instead of /hi:/, and the word "it" is often pronounced as /i/ instead of /it/.
    Where did you see/hear that?

  3. Member
    Student or Learner
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • China
      • Current Location:
      • China

    • Join Date: Feb 2019
    • Posts: 336
    #3

    Re: "Where's he?" vs. "Where's it?"

    Quote Originally Posted by Piscean View Post
    Where did you see/hear that?
    I heard this from a course of English pronunciation. This is from a video which is illustrated mainly in Chinese. I can upload a snippet of the video to One Drive right now.

    But the sentences of "where is he" and "where is it" are not available in the video. I have the questions after learning the subtlety.

    I've added the link to the first post of the thread.
    Last edited by tree123; 06-Jun-2019 at 06:44.
    Please correct my writing if there's any grammatical solecism.

  4. Moderator
    Interested in Language
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • American English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States

    • Join Date: Dec 2015
    • Posts: 19,378
    #4

    Re: "Where's he?" vs. "Where's it?"

    You can't contract "where is" to where's in a three-word sentence, and Americans tend to pronounce the final word as /i/.

    We never drop the T in it, but we usually realize it as a stop rather than /t/ when it's a final consonant. Moreover, the vowel in "it" is /ɪ/, not /i/.

    Therefore native speakers would not tend to confuse "Where is he?" and "Where is it?".
    I am not a teacher.

  5. Member
    Student or Learner
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • China
      • Current Location:
      • China

    • Join Date: Feb 2019
    • Posts: 336
    #5

    Re: "Where's he?" vs. "Where's it?"

    By the way, the teacher in the video is proficient in English pronunciation and is very helpful to me; but if I closed my eyes, and I could distinguish he is not a native speaker from his accent.

    Because /o/ in "what" is a back vowel, but his pronunciation about /o/ is slightly front. That is not as back and round as the kid in the video and many other Americans say. Do you think so?
    Last edited by tree123; 06-Jun-2019 at 07:11.
    Please correct my writing if there's any grammatical solecism.

  6. Moderator
    Interested in Language
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • American English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States

    • Join Date: Dec 2015
    • Posts: 19,378
    #6

    Re: "Where's he?" vs. "Where's it?"

    Quote Originally Posted by tree123 View Post
    By the way, the teacher in the video is proficient in English pronunciation and is very helpful to me; but if I closed my eyes, and I could distinguish he is not a native speaker from his accent.

    Because /o/ in "what" is a back vowel, but his pronunciation about /o/ is slightly front. That is not as back and round as the kid in the video and many other Americans say. Do you think so?
    The link doesn't work from my phone.
    I am not a teacher.

  7. Member
    Student or Learner
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • China
      • Current Location:
      • China

    • Join Date: Feb 2019
    • Posts: 336
    #7

    Re: "Where's he?" vs. "Where's it?"

    Quote Originally Posted by GoesStation View Post
    The link doesn't work from my phone.
    I don't know how to share with you in another way.

    I have been unable to access Google and YouTube since a couple days ago. I used to resort to VPN. It doesn't work now. So I cannot upload to YouTube or Google Drive.

    You can forget it. That is not a very important question of mine.
    Last edited by tree123; 06-Jun-2019 at 07:47.
    Please correct my writing if there's any grammatical solecism.

  8. Senior Member
    Other
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Polish
      • Home Country:
      • Poland
      • Current Location:
      • Poland

    • Join Date: Apr 2019
    • Posts: 1,123
    #8

    Re: "Where's he?" vs. "Where's it?"

    You should never underestimate the number of accents in English. Who once sounded to my non-native, non-teacherly ear like "surely not a native speaker", turned out to be a person who'd lived their whole live in Edinburgh.

  9. Member
    Student or Learner
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • China
      • Current Location:
      • China

    • Join Date: Feb 2019
    • Posts: 336
    #9

    Re: "Where's he?" vs. "Where's it?"

    Quote Originally Posted by Glizdka View Post
    You should never underestimate the number of accents in English. Who once sounded to my non-native, non-teacherly ear like "surely not a native speaker", turned out to be a person who'd lived their whole live in Edinburgh.
    To my best knowledge, not every British pronounces good English. Actually some of them don't even understand each other. I venture to assume that there's possibility that the native language of that person from Edinburgh is Scottish. That's why I am asking about "the Queen's English", and my wording in other post is English people.

    Some people from Eastern London speak Cockney, and some outsiders don't understand either.

    A Canadian from Quebec I know doesn't write good English.
    Last edited by tree123; 06-Jun-2019 at 08:54.
    Please correct my writing if there's any grammatical solecism.

  10. VIP Member
    Interested in Language
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • American English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States

    • Join Date: Apr 2009
    • Posts: 13,315
    #10

    Re: "Where's he?" vs. "Where's it?"

    I would never say "where's he." It's not natural. "Where is he" is. Or even "where's he at."

    "where is he" would usually sound like "where izzy," so the idea that the H is not always vocalized is correct.

    But, the vowel sounds in "he" and "it" are completely different and would not be confused. "It"ends with a T and "he" doesn't. There are many reasons why these would never be confused.

Page 1 of 2 1 2 Last

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •