Archives For pronunciation

Homophones

June 27, 2013

Big question mark on blackboardHow do you pronounce these two words: BLUE and BLEW? Which of these two grows in a garden: FLOWER or FLOUR? Have you ever read a word in English and you are not sure how it is pronounced? Or you need to write a word in English but you can’t remember how it’s spelled?

Homophones are two words that have the same pronunciation but have different spellings and different meanings. The English language has many homophones and they often cause a lot of confusion to English learners.

Here is a list of some of the more commonly used homophones and some examples to help you understand the different meanings:

Allowed-Aloud
Children, you are not allowed to stand up on the chairs!
Don’t say it aloud, it’s a secret!

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Is English the easiest language to learn?
Hello Sphere Word Tiles Global Languages CulturesThe question of which language is the most difficult to learn and which is the easiest to master is a much debated one.

In a language study done by the British Foreign Office the most difficult language to learn was found to be Basque, spoken in the Basque Country in Northern Spain and Southern France. One of the reasons is that Basque is an “isolated” language and does not share Latin roots with other languages in the way that Spanish, French and Italian do. Thus, vocabulary can be difficult to learn.  In addition, the grammar, syntax and pronunciation are very complex. Other languages, with an enormous amount of characters, such as Chinese, Japanese and Vietnamese, are also very difficult to learn by speakers and writers of the Roman alphabet. And many say that, in Chinese, once you have managed to master the long lists of complicated characters, an even more difficult task is the pronunciation.

What about English? Isn´t it one of the easiest languages to learn?

For the speakers of Romance languages (Spanish, French, Italian, Portuguese and Romanian) when you start learning English you are not starting from scratch. Just by using the same alphabet you are already off to good start. Continue Reading…