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English Audio Request

3 Words / 2 Recordings / 6 Comments
Note to recorder:

Hello. I'm very interested in phenomena called phonemic mergers in North American English.
Most dictionaries have these three words pronounced the same or two of them pronounced the same. But just now I found that there are people who pronounce all three words differently.
My purpose is:
1) first, to hear the pronunciation from people who pronounce all three words differently (because I've never seen a dictionary of American English that would mark these words with different vowel)
2) If you pronounce two of them the same and only one differently, or all the same. It would be great to hear your pronunciation as well.

merry Mary marry



Sept. 13, 2011

I pronounce them all the same.

Sept. 13, 2011

I am Australian so that would make a difference, but all three are pronounced very differently. I used them all in a sentence as well: 'Mary had a merry Christmas because her boyfriend asked her to marry him'

Sept. 14, 2011

leannesmith, thank you very much for your recording. I couldn't make much difference between Mary and merry in your recording, but the "marry" definitely sounded different to me.
By the way, does it sound strange to you when you hear someone pronouncing these words the same? I'm trying to cease the number of vowels I need to learn, because I have very few of them (comparing to English) in my native language, so it's tremendously difficult to learn new ones. (even to make a difference, not to speak of pronunciation)
If someone else is willing to show their pronunciation of these words you're welcome. And thank you very much.

Sept. 14, 2011

You are quite right, in that there is no difference in the pronunciation of the vowel sound, but the difference between Mary and merry is that you hold the vowel sound longer for Mary than in merry. Ma-ry has a long vowel sound, merry is quicker.
If I hear someone pronounce these words the same I can understand which one they mean from the context of the sentence.

Sept. 14, 2011

Oh,I think I understand now. Thank you.

Sept. 15, 2011

I think Leanne had a great idea using a sentence, so I did the same for you.

1. Merry Christmas.
2.Mary is her name.
3. Won't you marry me?


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