So-called “short i”

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Revision as of 15:39, 15 April 2016 by Ghoti (talk | contribs) (See also)


kit /kɪt/

The so-called “short i” sound is an informal term that means the short sound of the letter i which is IPA phoneme /ɪ/.

  • Examples: kit, limit, or thing

The term “short i” should only be used when the spelling is actually “i”. It's confusing to say "myth is pronounced with short i". If this sentence had to be spoken it would be better to say "myth is pronounced with the KIT vowel". Alternatively it could be said "myth is pronounced like the short sound of the letter i".

Another reason why the terms “long i” and “short i” are not recommended is because the opposition between /ɪ/ and /aɪ/ (“long i”) is not only a difference in length, but mainly a difference in quality.


  • bit - chips - fish - fit - hip - hit - kill - kiss - link - lip - liquid - quick - sing - sit - thick - thin - thing - think - this - win - with

See also

“Short” “Long” Long rhotic monophthong
“Short” vowel spelling
Rhotic diphthong
“Long” vowel spelling
Short monophtong
A /æ/ trap /eɪ/ face /ɑː/ start /eə/ square /æ/ carry
E /e/ dress /iː/ we /ɜː/ term /ɪə/ here /e/ cherry
I /ɪ/ kit /aɪ/ price /ɜː/ girl /aɪə/ fire /ɪ/ mirror
O /ɒ/ lot /əʊ/ hope /ɔː/ north /ɔː/ store /ɒ,BrE ɔːAmE/ torrid
U /ʌ/ strut /juː/ cute /ɜː/ nurse /jʊə/ cure /ʌ,BrE ɜːAmE/ hurry