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    #1

    Syllables

    How many syllables does "pool" have?
    Thanks in advance.

  1. BobK's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Syllables

    One: /pu:l/. This differs from "pull" in the quality of the vowel, not in the number of syllables. Most English words (especially monosyllables) use either /u:/ or /ʊ/ for "oo".



    PS: I'm talking about British English pronunciation, as is my wont
    Last edited by BobK; 10-Dec-2008 at 15:52. Reason: PS added


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    #3

    Re: Syllables

    Quote Originally Posted by BobK View Post
    One: /pu:l/. This differs from "pull" in the quality of the vowel, not in the number of syllables. Most English words (especially monosyllables) use either /u:/ or /ʊ/ for "oo".

    b

    Only ONE? This is what I thought. I came across this word in a book of training American accent. The author said that "POOL" has THREE syllables. That why I have to ask you to confirm.

    Thanks.

  2. BobK's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: Syllables

    Quote Originally Posted by inorderto View Post
    Only ONE? This is what I thought. I came across this word in a book of training American accent. The author said that "POOL" has THREE syllables. That why I have to ask you to confirm.

    Thanks.
    THREE? Some accents from the US might give it two (I'm not sure of my ground here, but think of Rod Steiger in In the Heat of the Night...). But I can't imagine how it could have three, even in the speech of the most red-necked of red-necks! And lyric writers trying to find a rhyme for 'you'll' might stretch the /u:/ sound out so that it ends with a schwa.

    In Britain, it's one.

    b


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    #5

    Re: Syllables

    Quote Originally Posted by BobK View Post
    THREE? Some accents from the US might give it two (I'm not sure of my ground here, but think of Rod Steiger in In the Heat of the Night...). But I can't imagine how it could have three, even in the speech of the most red-necked of red-necks! And lyric writers trying to find a rhyme for 'you'll' might stretch the /u:/ sound out so that it ends with a schwa.

    In Britain, it's one.

    b

    Yes, THREE. The following is quoted from this book:

    Pool looks like a nice, one-syllable word, but if you say it this way, at best, it will sound like pull, and at worst will be unintelligible to your listener. For clear comprehension, you need to say three syllables (pu/wuh/luh). Where did
    that W come from? It's certainly not written down anywhere, but it is there just as definitely as the P is there.

  3. BobK's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: Syllables

    Quote Originally Posted by inorderto View Post
    Yes, THREE. The following is quoted from this book:

    Pool looks like a nice, one-syllable word, but if you say it this way, at best, it will sound like pull, and at worst will be unintelligible to your listener. For clear comprehension, you need to say three syllables (pu/wuh/luh). Where did
    that W come from? It's certainly not written down anywhere, but it is there just as definitely as the P is there.
    If someone (not a Briton) were to pronounce the letters "oo" as two vowels, /u:/ followed by /ʊ/ (not the diphthong /ʊə/ - which some courses - like Cutting Edge for example - seem to think has died out) a /w/ phoneme would be used to link them. But I don't understand the "luh" syllable; I'm not sure the writer does either.

    b

    PS But he is not talking about British English. Maybe in American English you do distinguish "pool" from "pull" by changing the number of syllable rather than (as in Br E) changing the quality of the vowel; that leaves the third 'syllable' to account for. We'd better wait for some transatlantic guidance.
    Last edited by BobK; 10-Dec-2008 at 16:42. Reason: Added PS

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    #7

    Re: Syllables

    There is very little difference between "pool" and "pull" (if any) where I come from, but they are both one syllable.



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