Letter A, the Silent
Let’s start at the beginning with the letter A. Of course, we always begin with the letter A, don’t we?
In other words, we’d like to see bread rolled down the aisle.
Despite the fact that it was a stupid sentence, it has three instances of a silent letter A. Are you able to view them?
Basically. Aisle. Bread.
There are many instances where A is unnecessary, such as in the words bread and avenue, because it has no effect on the sound we create.
Bread may be written as bread right, and aisle could be written as avenue.
That A isn’t required for aesthetics. Aesthetic.
The problem is that you won’t know for sure unless you hear the word said aloud or consult a reputable dictionary’s phonemic script.
If you’ve watched the preceding lesson on English vowel sound pronunciation, you’ll be able to tell which English sounds are being shown here.
Then you may be confident that you’re pronouncing bread correctly, as opposed to braid, breed, or bre-ad.
There is one silent A that you can always count on: words that end in -ically, of which there are many, including basically.
When those finishes are spoken organically, the A is always silent. Listen. You have the following:
basically \logically \politically \automatically \specifically
Letter E- silent letter.
The letter E is a fascinating one. It’s the most common silent vowel letter in English, and there are some helpful tips (rather than rules) for accurately pronouncing words with silent E’s.
When the letter E appears at the end of a word, it is normally silent, with the exception of when the E is the sole vowel sound in the word, as in the example above.
he\she\we\be\me\sRight? It’s the only syllable we need to say if it’s the lone vowel sound.
We don’t pronounce an E at the end of a word the rest of the time, just like we don’t pronounce flavour. Isn’t it obvious that this term contains two vowel letters? Here and here are two examples.
taste \clue \bake \imagine
At the conclusion of each of those words is a silent E. We aren’t aware of it. It isn’t wholly pointless, though. The vowel sound that follows before it is frequently changed by that silent E. And I’ve got a couple of examples to get you thinking about it.
So, if we look at the word hop, it becomes hope as soon as we add that E to the end. So, hop, hope, that vowel sound extends forth.
Similarly, if we add an E to hid, it becomes hide. As a result, sit becomes site.
So, while we don’t hear E directly, it has an impact on the sound that comes before it. I’d like to practise a couple more words with silent E’s with you. Are you all set?
Toss in some vegetables.
So, do you know where that silent E is hiding? I don’t say veg-etable; I just say vegetable.
When it comes to normal past tense verbs, the letter E is frequently silent. Isn’t it true that all of those verbs finish in -ed? In phrases like as
fazed \sighed\played \baked \asked \wrapped
That last E is silent in all of those situations. We aren’t aware of it.
Silent letter - I
The letter I is not frequently silent, yet it is in a few common English terms such as
fruit \ssuit \sjuice \scruise
We don’t pronounce the I sound in any of these terms, so it’s not fru-it, su-it, ju-ice, or cru-ise. We’ll just use the ooh vowel sound for now.
The word parliament now includes a silent I as well. There’s a syllable in there that isn’t stressed. Parliament. And there’s a silent I in business as well. Business.
But what makes that term even more perplexing is that it has an E sound, despite the letter U being used to represent it. With me, practise speaking it out loud. Business.
Letter O - silent letter.
Let’s chat about the quiet letter O, shall we? It’s expressed in words like
enough \rough \tough
I mean, each of those words has numerous silent letters, right? The silent G, the silent H, but for the vowel sound, wouldn’t simply a basic U suffice?
You’ve undoubtedly heard the word people enough to know not to worry about the O, right? People.
Leopard and jeopardy both have a silent O.
When anything is in danger or is likely to be damaged, we say it is in jeopardy.
He realised his career was in jeopardy at that point.
U, the Silent Letter
The security guard and his coworker guessed who owned the guitar.
Don’t feel bad if you can’t figure it out. It’s possible that you’ll need to see it before you can guess it. It’s the letter U, and the letter U can be silent in a number of English words, especially when it comes after the letter G.
I’d like for you to attempt these with me.
guitar guilt tongue colleague guarantee guess guard guidance
Okay, pay attention because I’m going to give you a tiny pronunciation hint.
She plays the guitar exquisitely / exquisitely / meticulously.
So, what do you think of all of those three words at the end?
And it’s very usual for native English speakers to simply drop that small vowel syllable.
When we use phrases that are exactly like this and finish in -fully, we normally leave out the U.
That syllable is now pronounceable correctly. It’s already unstressed, but dropping that extra syllable makes it sound more natural and relaxed. Forget about it, U.
Just then, we went through almost fifty terms that contained silent vowel letters. This isn’t a comprehensive list by any means, but we did cover a number of the more prevalent ones, with the goal of making you seem more natural and relaxed when speaking English. Make sure you pronounce it correctly.