The most popular pronunciation articles from our blog, featuring:

accents | sounds | silence | jokes | eggs

/ʃ/ the Whisper Sound

A close look at voiceless fricative sound /ʃ/ – how to pronounce it, and where it appears in English. The article also contains several ways to tell people to ‘shut up’  and a very difficult tongue twister…

Last September the BBC released a documentary about a Polish lady living in the UK who felt she was suffering discrimination as a result of her accent. In the film a voice coach is hired and, presumably mistaking the accent for an infestation of ants, promptly claims she can “get rid of” it. What? We looked into this bizarre use of language further….

Silent letters are everywhere in English, largely owing to the language’s rapid and uneven development in vocabulary and pronunciation. They cause problems for native speakers and language learners alike, so in this guide, we looked at silent consonants B C D G H K L N P R S W and worked out any patterns in their origins.

English Puns

Puns are jokes that play on words for comic effect, many using similar pronunciations of different words. In this article we chose 10 puns and worked out why they were funny. We also explored a particularly unfunny type of pun called a ‘dad joke’.

By far the most popular article on this year’s blog was a fairly technical look at how vowel length changes in pronunciation. We explored how the often quoted distinction between ‘long’ and ‘short’ vowels really doesn’t work in English and along the way saw how SHIP can easily be longer than SHEEP.