Problem pronouncing 'TH'

Guest   Wed Feb 20, 2008 4:28 am GMT
Yes, Greek has this and I appreciate it. It's a great sound. Greek is a very cool language. If you're an Englishman, you have a cool word to say that. I don't have Greek letters here, but it's like Anglos for men and Anglitha for women.

Greeks have the "K" sound too, which I appreciate. Oh heck, we owe Greek a lot for the richness in English.
Travis   Wed Feb 20, 2008 4:09 pm GMT
>>Most foreign learners of English pronounce Birthday as Birdday or Burdzay.
It's not difficult to pronounce TH (or DH) isolated, but in some consonant clusters (especially between /z/ and /s/, like in ''it's the sea'') it can get pretty tricky.<<

The matter is that such assimilation of /ð/, and to a lesser extent /θ/, is a normal feature of most English dialects in the first place. For starters, /ð/ will normally be devoiced by preceding fortis obstruents across word boundaries. Similarly, if /ð/ follows a nasal consonant it normally becomes [n̪] (which a preceding /n/ will become as well). Likewise, /ð/ is very often lost following coronal stops with said stops being geminated even in many English dialects without any other sort of interdental hardening. Also, it is common in everyday speech to assimilate /ð/ and /θ/ to preceding /s/ and /z/ across word boundaries (but /θ/ will generally devoice preceding /z/ rather than the other way around).

Consequently, it should be concluded that English dialects in general do not preserve the actual realizations [θ] and [ð] of /θ/ and /ð/ particularly well, and especially across word boundaries. Hence, it should not be surprising that some English dialects go further and modify historical /θ/ and /ð/ in other positions as well. It should especially be unsurprising that many dialects modify /ð/ in word-initial position, considering that even in dialects that normally preserve word-initial /ð/ in isolation it is very frequently modified so as to assimilate to preceding words' final consonants.
Guest   Fri Feb 22, 2008 3:29 pm GMT
Most non-native speakers of English (including Spaniards) have problems with TH, in words like Months or Clothes.
Guest   Fri Feb 22, 2008 3:39 pm GMT
Not really. I can pronounce those words easily.
Antonio from RJ   Fri Feb 22, 2008 3:48 pm GMT
I fink we ave diverted ourselvez from de main point of all dis discussion, innit?
Guest   Fri Feb 22, 2008 9:02 pm GMT
''Not really. I can pronounce those words easily.''

Guest   Sat Feb 23, 2008 11:22 pm GMT
Guys, does anyone know a silly song or something for the "TH" sound, I mean something to the effect of "she sells sea shells on the sea shore."
Lo   Sun Feb 24, 2008 3:33 am GMT
>> Most non-native speakers of English (including Spaniards) have problems with TH, in words like Months or Clothes. <<

Excuse me, but I'm a native speaker and I say [mVntz] and [kloUz]
Travis   Sun Feb 24, 2008 9:10 am GMT
Actually, [ˈmʌ̃nts] and [ˈkʰloʊ̯z] (or their equivalents, such as my [ˈmʌ̃ʔts] ans [ˈkʰx̆ɰoːs]) are *extremely* common pronunciations of "months" and "clothes" in English dialects in general, and are in no fashion "incorrect" English pronunciations at all. The matter is simply that present-day English *as a whole* really does not perfectly preserve Late Middle English /θ/ and /ð/, unlike what some would insist.
Damian in Perth   Sun Feb 24, 2008 2:20 pm GMT
***I mean something to the effect of "she sells sea shells on the sea shore."***

How about someone with a lisp singing that one then? How about Violet Elizabeth? In true wee girly style if she never got her way with anything she always threatened to "thcream and thcream and thcream until thomebody heard her". She was the bane of William'th life.....
("Just William" books, by Richmal Crompton).
Guest   Sun Feb 24, 2008 3:27 pm GMT