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Thread: Hardest sound to pronounce

  1. #81
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    Re: Hardest sound to pronounce

    I think which sounds a person considers difficult depends mostly of what other languages he or she speaks. I personally have never encountered any really hard sounds, but then I have never tried to speak any Arabic languages. I think some sounds in those languages could be hard to pronounce. Maybe Dutch sounds, some of them: they seem very glottal. For me in fact Italian is a little hard to pronounce, due to its specific melody not to any particular sounds.

  2. #82
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    Re: Hardest sound to pronounce

    The famous Arabic ع is pretty impossible to me.

  3. #83
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    Re: Hardest sound to pronounce

    Quote Originally Posted by Jabir View Post
    The famous Arabic ع is pretty impossible to me.
    If you can pronounce ح then ع is the same thing only voiced.

  4. #84
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    Re: Hardest sound to pronounce

    Where could I hear those sounds? Do you have any links?

  5. #85
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    Re: Hardest sound to pronounce

    ح - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Voicele...geal_fricative
    ع - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Voiced_...geal_fricative

    Quote Originally Posted by LilianaB View Post
    Maybe Dutch sounds, some of them: they seem very glottal.
    If you can pronounce Polish ch /x/, they should be no problem for you. Just try to make this sound further back in your throat, and then try to voice the results, to pronounce two of guttural R's, that is - the southern /ʁ/, and the northern /ʀ/.

  6. #86
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    Re: Hardest sound to pronounce

    It must be sort of like in Danish. Thank you.

  7. #87
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    Re: Hardest sound to pronounce

    Quote Originally Posted by myfakename View Post
    Note though that it was recorded by me, so it's only as good as my description...

  8. #88
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    Re: Hardest sound to pronounce

    Quote Originally Posted by berndf View Post
    You could ask this question about every other sound any language has. As you said, it is not so difficult to pronounce. Then, why do you ask this question about this consonant and not about any other, like k, n , l, .... I really don't understand.
    you know, it is easy to me now, after a lot of practise.
    another question: it seems /X/ is not easy to pronounce for Germans in forign words, while there are many German words with this consonant, for example I heard khorasan pronouced by a German as korasan.

  9. #89
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    Re: Hardest sound to pronounce

    Quote Originally Posted by LilianaB View Post
    It must be sort of like in Danish. Thank you.
    The Dutch uvular "r" ([ʁ]~[ʀ]) is the same as in Danish, German, French and (European) Portuguese. There is nothing special about the sound in Dutch.

  10. #90
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    Re: Hardest sound to pronounce

    Quote Originally Posted by darush View Post
    you know, it is easy to me now, after a lot of practise.
    This surprises me. The mechanics of this sound is rather simple and it originated in many languages as a simplification of more difficult sounds, e.g. [tsi]~[tsj] in Italian "razione" is a simplification of [ti]~[tj] in Latin "rationem": If you say [tj] you have to move the entire front part of your tongue, if you say [tsj] you only have to move the tip of your tongue. It could be that you have a wrong idea how the sound is normally produced: The tongue is gently pressed against the palate with the tip of your tongue blocking the airflow just below the alveolar ridge, you build up pressure as you would for a normal [t] and then release the pressure by flipping the tip of your tongue downwards, but just a few millimeters. In this position of the tongue you produce the /s/ sound as it occurs, e.g., in European Spanish.
    Quote Originally Posted by darush View Post
    another question: it seems /X/ is not easy to pronounce for Germans in forign words, while there are many German words with this consonant, for example I heard khorasan pronouced by a German as korasan.
    This is because many Arabic or Persian loan words were imported from other European languages rather than directly from the original languages. Besides, German [x] occurs only in certain phonetic contexts: after back vowels. After other sounds the phoneme mutates to [ç] (as in "ich" [Iç]) and /x/ at the beginning of a word does not occur in native words. It occurs in some loan words, e.g. "Chemie" where the pronunciation varies from region to region.

  11. #91
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    Re: Hardest sound to pronounce

    Thank you berndf

  12. #92
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    Re: Hardest sound to pronounce

    Is there anyone (from Europe) who does not find some Arabic consonants hard to pronounce, like pharyngeals?
    [ɒkinɛk humorɒ vɒn, mindɛnˤtud, ɒkinɛk niŋʧ, mindɛnrɛ ke.pɛʃ]

  13. #93
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    Re: Hardest sound to pronounce

    Quote Originally Posted by Encolpius View Post
    Is there anyone (from Europe) who does not find some Arabic consonants hard to pronounce, like pharyngeals?
    The Maltese.

  14. #94
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    Re: Hardest sound to pronounce

    Quote Originally Posted by Pedro y La Torre View Post
    The Maltese.
    Oh, that's an excellent answer. Interesting enough people do not mention that language here in WR.
    But after checking the Wikipedia I do not think there are so many pharyngeals in Maltese.
    [ɒkinɛk humorɒ vɒn, mindɛnˤtud, ɒkinɛk niŋʧ, mindɛnrɛ ke.pɛʃ]

  15. #95
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    Re: Hardest sound to pronounce

    Maltese has only one pharyngeal: ħ like Arabic ح. It lacks the other pharyngeal ع, and also the "emphatic" (pharyngealised) consonants.
    Last edited by fdb; 23rd November 2012 at 8:56 PM.

  16. #96
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    Re: Hardest sound to pronounce

    There are nearly 100 posts here now, but nobody (unless I have overlooked something) has stated the obvious fact that all sounds are easy for those who have been exposed to them since childhood and that no sounds are intrinsically difficult. In fact, babies famously experiment with all the sounds that occur in any human language before discarding the ones that are not confirmed by their parents. A good reason for exposing infants to as many languages as possible.

    Of the languages with which I have occupied myself, the most difficult to pronounce is doubtless Vietnamese. It has six tones, 11 simple vowels (including 5 central vowels which all sound more or less identical to our European ears), and a huge number of diphthongs and triphthongs. That is my idea of difficult.

  17. #97
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    Re: Hardest sound to pronounce

    for me the hardest sound to pronounce i encountered is in the language of Panay Island, Philippines. It is commonly called "Aklanon" but in their native language it is " Ahk-k-khan". This language has the sound "ahkh" and i don't know what letter it represents.It has a fraction of y and g in between ahk sound.
    deKamatodeNah TeKatenggesan Ketam

  18. #98
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    Re: Hardest sound to pronounce

    People usually have difficulty pronouncing Turkish ı sound.

    http://translate.google.com/#tr/en/%C4%B1

  19. #99
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    Re: Hardest sound to pronounce

    Here in Egypt, we have a problem with Interdental consonants θ ð although they are exist in Arabic ذ ث.

    in Egyptian Dialect, θث became and ðذ became

    In Standard Arabic (Fusha) and English, we usually replace θ with s and ð with z

    Egyptians who want to be fluent in Fusha and English (with training) will be able to pronounce them

  20. #100
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    Re: Hardest sound to pronounce

    Quote Originally Posted by ahmedcowon View Post
    Here in Egypt, we have a problem with Interdental consonants θ ð although they are exist in Arabic ذ ث.
    in Egyptian Dialect, θث became and ðذ became
    In Standard Arabic (Fusha) and English, we usually replace θ with s and ð with z
    Egyptians who want to be fluent in Fusha and English (with training) will be able to pronounce them
    Interesting comment, you use "we", but maybe "some people" would be better, right? I cannot imagine native speakers might have problems with their own language. I haven't ever noticed English or Americans would have problems with their θ ð or here Czechs with their ř. I think it would be interesting to start a new thread regarding hardest sounds among natives. If that exists at all.
    [ɒkinɛk humorɒ vɒn, mindɛnˤtud, ɒkinɛk niŋʧ, mindɛnrɛ ke.pɛʃ]

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