The United States
Why "the" is pronounced differently in these two cases in spite of "universe" and "United" begins with the same sound ?
I would pronounce it the same way in each case.
The is pronounced differntly whether it's before a vowel or a consonant.
For instance, /the/ end and /the/ book. the first /the/ is pronounced like /thee/. That's what I learnt in Canada in my English class. Natives would tell you more.
The "u" sound in universe and United States is a consonant "u" sound, so the would be pronounced as /th@/ with the schwa. But if you were saying "the umbrella," it would be pronounced like /thee/
<<Why "the" is pronounced differently in these two cases in spite of "universe" and "United" begins with the same sound ? >>
There is no difference.
I know the rule mentioned by IloveEnglish and Ryan. I only thought that the case I asked about is an exception to the rule. Evidently I must have got it wrong.
Thank you very much for your answers.
what is the pronuciation of /@/ in /th@/ ? by @, do you mean the
/D bar/ ?
You're right Zi, it looks not correctly.
I know only "the" as (using Antimoon's ASCII Phonetic Alphabet):
[TH..] - before a word beginning with consonant - [..] pronounced like in the word "away" or "obey" (at the beginning)
[THi:] - before a word beginning with vowel - [i:] pronounced like in the word "see"
I don't think that vowel rule is correct. I only pronounce the as 'the' when I am emphasising something.
Sorry: I meant to say that I only pronounce 'the' as 'thee' for emphasis.
It looks like we may pronounce "the" as:
[TH..] - usually before a consonant
[THi] - before a vowel
[THi:] - when we are emphasizing it
(from "Collins COBUILD English Dictionary for Advanced Learners")