Difference between revisions of "IPA phoneme /ð/"

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{{IPA}}
 
{{IPA}}
 
With initial /ð/:
 
With initial /ð/:
*Grammar words: than - that - the - their - them - then - there - these - they - this - those - though - thus
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*Grammar words: than - the - their - them - then - there - these - they - this - those - though - thus
  
 
/ð/ in mid-position:
 
/ð/ in mid-position:

Revision as of 04:34, 17 October 2019

ð

that /ðæt/

In English, both in Received Pronunciation and in General American, the IPA phonetic symbol /ð/ corresponds to the initial consonant sound in words like "the", and "that" and the middle one in "mother" and "gather".

/ð/ is a voiced consonant; its unvoiced counterpart is IPA phoneme /θ/. Both phonemes are consistently spelled "th". See Decoding exercises: "th".

Common words

IPA vowels
æ ɑː
trap father - start
e
dress face square
ɪ ɪə
kit fleece near
ɒ əʊ ɔː
lot goat taught
ʊ ʊə
foot goose mature
juː jʊə
cute cure
ʌ ə ɜː
strut comma nurse
ɔɪ
price mouth choice
IPA consonants
Normal sound: /b, d, f, g, h, k, l, m, n, p, r, s, t, v, w, z/
 ʃ  ŋ
show church sing
ʒ  j 
usual judge you
θ ð s
think that see
IPA Stress
ˈ Primary stress
hotel /həʊˈtel/
ˌ Secondary stress
understand
/ˌʌndərˈstænd/
IPA Syllabification
. nitrate /ˈnaɪ.treɪt/, night-rate /ˈnaɪt.reɪt/

With initial /ð/:

  • Grammar words: than - the - their - them - then - there - these - they - this - those - though - thus

/ð/ in mid-position:

  • Grammar words: although - another - either - neither - other - rather - together - whether - within /wɪðˈɪn, wɪθˈɪnAmE/ - without /wɪˈðaʊt, wɪθˈaʊtAmE/
  • Content words: bother - brother - clothing - father - farther - feather - further - gather - leather - mother - Netherlands - northern - rhythm - southern /ˈsʌðərn/ - weather

With final /ð/:

  • Grammar word: with /wɪð/ or /wɪθ/
  • Content words: breathe - smooth

Less common words

  • /ð/ in mid-position : heathen, heather, worthy
  • With final /ð/: bathe, booth /buːð,BrE buːθAmE/, clothe, loathe, soothe, teethe

Irregular plurals

Some words ending in /θ/ have a plural ending in /ðz/

  • baths - mouths - paths - youths

Anticipated pronunciation difficulties depending on L1

Preconceived ideas and other interferences from L1 obviously interfere in many cases with how students perceive - and pronounce - sounds/words in English. The following section aims to point out some of the most typical difficulties teachers and students may encounter regarding pronunciation.

Spanish

The main difficulty is the difference between /ð/ and /d/, that is, they may have difficulty distinguishing between "they" and "day". In Spanish both sounds are allophones. This means that to the Spanish ear [aˈðjos], and [aˈdjos] are heard as the same word, even if only [aˈðjos] is the natural pronunciation of "adiós".

Since in Spanish [d] always follows [n], a sentence such as "can they go?" may be uttered as */kən deɪ ˈgəʊ/.

Spain

Many Spanish speakers from Spain don't distinguish clearly between /ð/ and /θ/ and when they see "th" tend to pronounce it /θ/, a sound which corresponds to the letter "z" in Spanish. They even replace the [ð] sound of standard Spanish by [θ]. For example, the name of the satirical website La Verdaz is a phonetic rendering of "La Verdad" in a regional accent from Spain.

See also

External links