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Pronouncing the letter shiot at the end of a syllable

Discussion in '한국어 (Korean)' started by aniperi, Oct 7, 2013.

  1. aniperi Junior Member

    english- United States
    In the word 맛있다 , the first shiot sounds like an "s" even though in other words like 맛없다 the first shiot sounds like a "d/t".

    Why is that?
  2. Serena96 Junior Member

    Each consonant at the end of a syllable sound like an unaspirated stop when it doesn't have a vowel next to it. So each coronal consonant like t,d,t',s,ss,ch,jj and ch' becomes /t/ at the end of the syllable, unless followed by a vowel.

    In 맛있다 (mashitta) the first syllable is followed by a syllable beginning with a vowel, so the first shiot is pronounced as /s/. The ssangshiot at the end of the second syllable, though, is followed by a consonant, so the pronounciation becomes /t/.

    In 맛없다 (masopta), the first shiot is /s/, having a vowel in the next syllable, but the group pieup-shiot is pronounced as /pt/ instead of /bs/, because it has a consonant in the next syllable.
  3. rabbitkim85 Junior Member

    Aniperi, first I'd like to note
    맛있다 has two possible pronunciation.

    맛있다 = ma/shid/tta
    or ma/did/tta
    Both are standard pronunciation. Originally only madidtta had been a standard pronunciation but mashidtta was approved later.

    맛없다 = ma/dub/tta

    Like madubtta, madidtta follows the rule, producing 'd' sound at the first consonant of a second syllable.

    It is because the actuall pronunciation of shiot in '맛' is 'd' when it is a coda(a consonant closes a syllable). And as you know, the next syllable starts with a vowel, the 'd' sound moves to the second syllable.

    So strictly, madidtta should be the only standard pronunciation, but because a lot of people say 'mashidtta', it also was approved.

    Personally I also never say 'madidtta', and rarely hear it is said.
    I think it's because it needs more effort to pronounce 'madidtta'. Mashidtta is easier to pronounce.

    If you try saying 'mashitta' and 'madidtta', you would also feel which one is easier.

    And also it's just my guess but I think it could be a dissimilation process. in ma/did/tta, the second syllable has two same sounds. People find it difficult to pronounce same sound in a row --as seen in tongue twister -- so they tend to change the first consonant to 'sh' sound. 'ma/dub/tta' doesn't undertake dissimilation because the first consonant and the closing consonant are different from each other.
  4. RadkeRonnie Junior Member

    English - USA
    I'm not Korean, but I'm fairly certain that both of you are wrong.

    맛있다 should be romanized "mashitta."
    맛없다 should be romanized "madeoptta."

    I live in Korea right now, and people love to talk about how delicious the food is. NO ONE says "maditta." EVER. This is because, like people have explained, the ㅅ behaves like it's at the beginning of the next syllable due to the ㅇ. This is standard Korean pronunciation. Rabbit, I hope this doesn't come across as rude, but this is my academic opinion. Inf strictly speaking, all syllables ending in ㅅ were pronounced as [t] or [d] even with a following ㅇ, then that would mean that ALL Koreans pronounce these syllables wrong at ALL levels of formality. This would mean that the rules that one would refer to while "strictly speaking" would not correspond to the actual Korean language, and that would make these rules simply incorrect. I don't doubt that "maditta" is an obscure pronunciation, but I think it's incorrect to say that strictly speaking, it's the right way to say it.

    As for why 맛없다 isn't "maseoptta," people don't really know. Just know that people don't say "maseoptta." I think that it might be because the ㅇ in 없다 is stronger than normal ㅇ's, so it behaves like it's an actual pronounced consonant. The reason I say this is that 멋있다 is "meoshitta," whereas 멋없다 is "meodeoptta." I could be wrong.

    (But for those of you who actually think this is interesting, I use 魚 [어] as an example of a strong ㅇ. Even though 魚 is pronounced just 어 at the beginning of a word, it begins with a final ㅇ sound [ng] between syllables, e.g. 沙 [사] + 魚 [어] becomes 상어. So it's possible for an initial ㅇ to be something other than a simple placeholder.)
  5. rabbitkim85 Junior Member

    RadkeRonnie, yes, I'm sure you've never heard people around you saying 'maditta', because people just don't actually say that way, but say "mashitta" as you said.
    But if you watch news on TV, surely you'll hear newscasters pronouncing 'maditta', just because it has been standard pronunciation of 맛있다, as it is found in all Korean dictionaries. Though people hardly say "maditta", nothing wrong if you say "maditta" in everyday conversation. People might find it a bit unfamiliar, but wouldn't find it strange or wrong. They'd feel you're trying to be precise. (or to abide by standard Korean pronunciation rule)
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2013
  6. chemnerd Junior Member

    I have never heard [maditta] in my life. The reason that grammarians don't rectify that ridiculous pronunciation in dictionary might be for people who don't have front teeth or for stutterers?
  7. Stassri Junior Member

    I did, just to let you know. When I was 7 years old, my school teacher told us ' 'mashitta' is wrong, 'maditta' is correct. ' whenever some guy said 'mashitta'.
  8. RadkeRonnie Junior Member

    English - USA
    Rabbit, thanks for the explanation.

    Now I'm interested. On these news shows where people pronounce 맛있다 like 마딨다, do they also pronounce e.g. 것은 as 거든, 옷이 as 오디, 값이 as 갑띠, 없이 as 업띠 etc.? If they do, wow, I never knew, and I think that's kind of cool. If not, then maybe perhaps it's a linguistic phenomenon where people change the standard pronunciations of words to make them "correct," something that's happened with the pronunciation of the letter v in certain dialects of Spanish. If that's the case, that's even cooler. Either way, I'm a nerd, and I want to know.

  9. rabbitkim85 Junior Member

    Yes, I have a same experience! Now I remember that I was taught to say 'maditta' in Korean language class when I was a middle school student, although I forgot to say so after a while.
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2013
  10. rabbitkim85 Junior Member

    First, I should mention that the only standard pronunciation of 것은, 옷이, 값이, 없이 is 거시, 오시, 갑시, 업시, respectively, as you seem to know already. Thus, newscasters will never pronounce that way.
    The 'd' sound when shiot is a final consonant of a syllable with a following vowel, as in 'maditta', is something uncommon. This phenomenon is something observed in special environment, and other than that, the 'sh' pronunciation is a basic rule.
    I'm afraid I can't explain the rule by which shiot is pronounced 'd' because I don't know much about linguistics.
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2013
  11. Rance Senior Member

    Like in many other languages I assume, Korean linguists just hate irregularities.
    Hence they wish people to say "maditta" because that would be regular way. (And that's why rabbit's teacher try to teach that way. I assume rabbit was in middle school around early 90's when they overhauled the rules.)
    However, most had been pronouncing as "mashitta" and still do.
    So the linguist decided to allow some irregularities.
    This article explains the case little more in details.
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2013

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