Голубой цвет – название темы

Жёлтый цвет – важное

Зелёный – очень важное

Лиловый — очень и очень важное

Lesson 1

Subject: Theoretical Phonetics

Theme: The subject of theoretical phonetics of English language.

Phonetics is often defined as a branch of linguistics dealing with the phonetic structure of a language. It means that phonetics studies:

the sounds, their classification and distribution;

the syllabic structure of words, i.e. syllable formation and syllable division;

the accentual structure of words, its nature , place and degree;

the intonational structure of sentences.

Though it is an independent science and develops according to its own laws, it is connected with a number of other linguistic and non-linguistic sciences. Phonetics is connected with lexicology, grammar, stylistics, because lexical, grammatical and other phenomena are expressed phonetically. They cannot exist outside phonetics.

Phonetics is connected with grammar as it helps to pronounce correctly singular and plural forms of nouns, the past indefinite and the past participle forms of verbs and other endings, as in: pens, books, classes, asks – asked, lives – lived, Nick’s, teacher’s, etc.

It is connected with grammar also through sound interchange, as in: wife – wives, path – paths, house – houses, man – men, mouse – mice, tooth – teeth, etc.

Phonetics is connected with lexicology through the accentual structure of English words in which verbs are formed from nouns by conversion.

e. g. subject – to subject

import – to import

record – to record

Phonetics is connected with stylistics through intonation which serves to express different emotions and to distinguish between different attitudes on the part of the speaker or reader.

One and the same sentence may have different meanings when pronounced with different terminal tones.

e.g. Isn’t it wonderful? (general question)

Isn’t it wonderful! (exclamation)

Mary is right. (statement)

Mary is right? (general question)

The subject of theoretical phonetics is 4 aspects: articulatory, auditory, acoustic and functional;

From the point of view of its articulation every speech sound is a complex unity of definite movements and positions of speech organs. The articulatory aspect deals with the study, description and classification of speech sounds.

The auditory aspect of speech sounds studies how speech sounds are perceived by the listener and speaker.

The acoustic aspect of speech sounds deals with the physical properties of a sound. The physical properties of a sound are: 1) fundamental frequency, 2) intensity, and 3) time.

The functional aspect (in other words phonological aspect) of speech sounds. Speech sounds are functional units of a language. The role of speech sounds lies in the fact that they can be used to differentiate words, like /bæk/ — /bæg/; /rait/ — /mait/, etc.

Lesson 2

Subject: Theoretical Phonetics

Theme: The phonetic structure of the English language

The English phonetic structure is systemic in character. It is made of the following components:

1)The system of English sounds;

2)The syllabic structure of English words;

3)The accentual structure of words;

4)The intonational structure of English sentences.

There are 44 sounds in the English language. Each individual sound is sometimes referred to as a grapheme or phoneme in special brackets – transcription. 20 of the sounds we refer to as vowel sounds. Vowels are classified into: short, long, diphthongs, according to the position of the tongue (front vowels, central vowels and back vowels), according to the position of the mouth (open vowels, middle vowels and closed vowels), round/ unround. Seven short ([ʌ], [ə], [æ], [ɪ], [e], [ɔ], [u]). Five long ([ɑ:], [3:], [ɪ:], [ɔ:], [u:]). The length of a sound is indicated by a colon after this sound. There are eight diphthongs in English. Diphthong is a sequence of two vowel sounds, which are pronounced as one. Diphthongs are always vowels ([ɑɪ], [au], [eɪ], [əu], [eə], [ɪə], [ɔɪ], [uə]). 24 of the sounds we refer to as consonant sounds. Consonant are divided into voiced and voiceless, according to the place and manner of articulation. Place of articulation — positions of speech organs to create distinctive speech sounds. Manner of articulation — how speech organs involved in making a sound

Table of English Consonant Phonemes

Place of Articulation






Зубной (дентальный)


В области альвеол

Palato- alveolar







Образованный в голосовой щели

Manner of articulation

Plosive (stops)


p b

t d

k g



ʧ ʤ


Щелевые (фрикативные)

f v

θ ð

s z

ʃ ʒ















The second component of the phonetic system of English is syllabic structure of its words in isolation and in phrases and sentences. This component may be viewed from two points – its syllable formation and its syllable division (syllabification).

The third component of the phonetic system of English is the accentual structure of its words. It may be studied from three aspects:

1)the physical nature of word accent – emphasizing with the voice stressed syllable;

2)the position of word accent in different words – English has free position in words e.g. on the first/second/third syllable;

3)the degree of word accent – zero (all unstressed syllables) primary (main stress), secondary (additional), tertiary (when the syllable is unstressed but has stressed sound).

The degrees of word accent.

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The fourth component of the phonetic system of English is the intonation structure of sentences. Intonation is a complex unity of speech melody, prominence of words, tempo and voice-tamber which serve to express the speaker’s thoughts, emotions, feelings and attitudes towards reality.

All the four components of the phonetic system of English (phonemic, syllabic, accentual and intonational) constitute the English pronunciation.

Lesson 3

Theme: Articulatory transitions of vowel and consonant phonemes.

Assimilation is a modification of a consonant under the influence of neighbouring consonant.

1.1 Direction of change

Progressive, when the first of the two sounds affected by assimilation makes the second sound similar to itself, e. g. desks, pegs.

Regressive, when the second sound makes the first sound similar to itself:Literary english pronounciation in the USA

Double, when two sounds influence each other, e. g. twice /t/ is rounded and /w/ is partly devoiced.

1.2 Assimilation of voicing (озвончение). It involves rising & falling of the voice and a segment is voiced or devoiced e.g. Теорфонетика темы Теор фонетика лекции Лекции по теор фонетике Лекции по теор фонетике

1.3 Assimilation of place of articulationit’s a phonemic change at word boundaries particularly it involves de-alveolarization of the sounds [t], [d], [n] (see below) (they are alveolar, they are changed to another sound in the fast speech).

Literary english pronounciation in the USA

1.4 Assimilation of manner of articulation – it’s a phonemic change is typical for rapid and casual speech. It means that neighbouring consonant sound gives another one his characteristic of manner of articulation.

Теорфонетика темы

1.5 Coalescence of place and manner of articulation – is a phonemic change includes changes in place and manner of articulation; if a word ends into [d; t; s; z] and the second starts from [j] in the result we have the sounds [tʃ; dʒ; ʃ; ʒ]

Теор фонетика лекции

ELISION – is a disappearance of consonants and vowels sounds. Elision can be historical and contemporary.English spelling is full of «silent» letters which bear witness to historical elision, e.g. walk /wo:k/, knee /ni:/, knight /nait/, castle /’ka:sl/, write /rait/, iron /airn/, etc.

The most known elision of the sounds [d] [t] in end of words:must be [m^sbi/muspi] aspects [ǽspeks] Elision of [v] & [f]

five p.m. [‘fai ‘pi’em] shares have been [‘Se:zэbin] needs of the [‘ni:zэðэ] needs of the working people [knees of the working people]Elision of schwa sounds [ə], [ɪ] is very frequent phenomena. It is met in common words: interest, different, political, collective, fanatics, talkative, cabinet, minister, chancellor, similar, secretary, library governor, prisoner.They sound like: intrest, difrent, pliticl, clective, fnatics, talktive, cabnet, minster, simlar, secretry, libry govnor, prisner.

You can meet these transcriptions in some dictionaries as alternative;

Lesson 4

Theme: English Literary Pronunciation on British Islands;

In the British Isles there are such types: 1) Southern English pronunciation, or RP; 2) Northern English pronunciation, 3) Standard Scottish Pronunciation, 4) Irish English pronunciation. 1. The Southern English Pronunciation (RP)The Southern British type of English pronunciation is variously known also as Standard English PronunciationReceived English Pronunciation (RP), and Public School Pronunciation.For reasons of politics, commerce and the presence of the court the pronunciation of the south-east of England, and more particularly that of the London region began to acquire in the 16thcentury an exceptional social prestige in England. In time it lost some of the local characteristics of London speech. It may be said to have been finally fixed, as the speech of the educated, through the stabilizing influence of the public schools of the 19th century. Hence the name Public School Pronunciation. Since such public schools existed in all parts of the country and prepared their pupils for the universities, this type of pronunciation was soon disseminated throughout the country and began to be recognized as characteristic not so much of a region as of a social stratum. With the spread of education, the situation arose in which those dialect-speaking schoolchildren and university students who were eager for social advancement felt obliged to modify their accent in the direction of the social standard and acquire this type of pronunciation. Hence the term Received Pronunciation (RP), introduced by D.Jones. Until recently, RP English was widely believed to be more educated than other accents and was referred to as the King’s (or Queen’s) English, or even «BBC English» (due to the fact that in the early years of broadcasting it was very rare to hear any other dialects on the BBC). The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) adopted this form of pronunciation for its announcers mainly because it is the type which is the most widely understood a. The special position occupied by RP has led to its being the form of pronunciation most commonly described in books on the phonetics of British English and traditionally taught to foreigners.2. The Northern English PronunciationNorthern English is the speech of those born and brought up in the region between Birmingham and the border of Scotland. The most marked differences in the distribution of vowels are as follows:1) [a] for RP [æ] in words like bad [bad], man [man];2) [æ] or [a] for [ɑ:] in words like glass [glæs, glas], ask [æsk, ask], dance [dæns, dans] 3) [ʊ] for [Λ] in words like cup [kʊp], love [lʊv], much [mʊt∫];4) [e:] or [ε:] for [eɪ] in words like may [me:, mε:], take [te:k, tε:k].5) [ɔ:] for [əʊ] as in goat [go:t], boat [bo:t].Northern English as a whole represents the earlier type of London English that was the standard speech in the 16th, 17th and early 18th centuries. This type was carried to America. That is why there are many features in common between American and Northern English accents. At the same time people from the North are generally more likely to use old-fashioned phrases, and less likely to use American phrases.3. Standard English of ScotlandStandard English of Scotland is considerably modified by Southern British. The most important differences are as follows:1) It is a rhotic accent with ‘r’ still pronounced before consonants or silence. It may be [r] an alveolar trill of the Russian type as in more [mor], born [born];2) Dark [ł] is used in all positions as in look [łυk]; 3) The non-existent in RP back-lingual (velar) fricative similar to the Russian /x/ is used in words like loch [lɒx] – озеро, caught [kɒxt].

4) The phoneme [w] is pronounced as a cluster [hw] used in words with the initial digraph wh, as in which [hwit∫].6) [a] is used instead of [æ] in words like bad [bad], man [man].7) [æ] is used instead of [ɑ:] in words like glass [glæs], ask [æsk], dance [dæns], after [´æftər], path [pæθ].  8) Monophthongs followed by [r] are pronounced instead of the centring diphthongs, e.g. here [hır], beard [bırd], there, their [ðe:r] or [ ðεr], bear, bare [be:r] or [bεr], pure [pjur], sure [∫u:r], poor [pu:r]. 9) SSE pronounces both cot and caught [ɔ].10) [u] is used for [aʊ] as in house [hus], powder [‘pudər].11) [a:e] for RP [aɪ] as in five [fa:ev], size [sa:ez].12) The realisation of the nasal velar in the suffix «-ing» as a nasal alveolar «in'» for example talking /’tɔːkɪn/

Lesson 5

Theme: English Literary Pronunciation in the USA;

1) AE intonation does not rise or fall as much as that of BE, i.e. there is somewhat less modulation of the voice and, consequently, AE sounds more monotonous.2) American pronunciation is usually more nasalized. 3) The tempo of American speech is rather slower than that of British speech.

4) Attention should be drawn to the more numerous assimilated pronunciations that occur in colloquial AE. Many of these pronunciations have been reflected in spelling in forms such as didya =did you, ain’tcha =ain’t you = aren’t you, gimme = give me, gonna = going to, toleja = told you, etc. The General American type includes the Middle Atlantic area of New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Maryland, as well as all of the Middle and Far West. The peculiarities of this type may be summed up as follows:1) GA [æ:] instead of RP [ɑ:] in some words containing the letter a followed by ss, st, th, sk, nt: class, last, bath, flask, plant;2) GA [ɑ:] instead of RP [ɒ], e.g. in log, dog, often, etc.3) yod-dropping (i.e. omission of the semi-consonant [j]) in stressed syllables after alveolar consonants, e.g. in due [du:], produce [pro´du:s], stupid [´stu:pid].4) GA uses the retroflex [ɹ] characteristic also of Irish English and the British West Country dialects. GA is a rhotic variant of English, or r-full, i.e. the r is sounded in all words where this letter occurs, e.g. farmer, earth, bird, etc.5) In GA the forelingual plosive [t] is voiced in an intervocalic position. Thus, to the British ear there is practically no difference in the following pairs of words: atom – Adam, waiting – wading, writer – rider. This is usually defined as the flapping of intervocalic /t/ and /d/ to alveolar tap [ɾ] before reduced vowels. The words ladder and latter are mostly or entirely homophonous, though distinguished by some speakers by a lengthened vowel preceding an underlying ‘d’. For some speakers, the merger is incomplete and ‘t’ before a reduced vowel is sometimes not tapped following [eɪ] or [ɪ] when it represents underlying ‘t’; thus greater and grader are distinguished. Even among those words where /t/ and /d/ are flapped, words that would otherwise be homophonous are, for some speakers, distinguished if the flapping is immediately preceded by the diphthongs /ɑɪ/ or /ɑʊ/; these speakers tend to pronounce writer with [əɪ] and rider with [ɑɪ].6) The lateral consonant [l] is usually pronounced as “dark l” in those positions where it is “clear” in General British: little [łitł], believe [bɪ’łi:v].

clear [l] dark [ɫ]

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7) The replacement of the vowel [ɒ] with the vowel [ʌ] in most utterances of the words wasoffromwhateverybodynobodysomebodyanybodybecause, want.8) The merger of [ʊɹ] and [ɝ:] after palatals in some words, so that curepuremature and sure rhyme with fir9) Laxing of /e/, /ɪ/ and /u/ to /ɛ/, /ɪ/ and /ʊ/ before /r/, causing pronunciations like [pɛr], [pɪr] and [pjʊr] for pairpeer and pure.10)AE prefers a short [ɪ] in the lightly-stressed second syllable of words like missile, futile, whereas BE has the diphthong [aɪ].

British English


















[Literary english pronounciation in the USA]