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§ 120. The weak vowels are:

I. ï : lady, receive.

II. li : vah<e.

III. o : fellow, borough.

IV. 9 : father, dollar.

In § 122 we shall see what sounds become ï or u or o or 9. Here we may observe that of the four the most important is 3. All four weak vowels require little exertion on the speaker's part, but 9 less than any of the others, and for that reason most unstrest vowels show a tendency to pass into the p-sound1). What is more, uneducated, careless, lazy speakers very often allow even u and o to become 3, as when they pronounce

value = veel'ys.

window = win'd9.

This is a practise against which the student should

be on his guard.

A mistake often made by Dutch students is the 3 sound in such words as:

lady = lë'ds.

No Englishman ever pronounces this t as 3 !

§ 121. The fate of an unstrest vowel largely depends on two circumstances:

i) cf: swffice, confirmation, beggac, gentlemnn, gentlemen figure, sailor. all becoming 3.

C

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