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pronunciation: row [=argument]

Discussion in 'English Only' started by Egoexpress, Aug 5, 2010.

  1. Egoexpress

    Egoexpress Senior Member

    Hungary, Hungarian
    Hi there,

    I was wondering how common the following pronunciation was of the word "row"

    Tim and I had a row the other day.

    Does it rhyme with the role and ball, or it's more like cow? The reason why I'm asking is because I'm a watching a movie, a lady in it pronounced it like the word cow and I'd always thought it was like the words ball or role.

    Thank you.
     
  2. 20000miles Junior Member

    Sydney, AUS
    English - Australia
    "Row" (meaning "argument") is indeed pronounced like "cow". The lady in the movie was correct.

    In other usages, like in "to row a boat", it rhymes with "go".
     
  3. audiolaik

    audiolaik Senior Member

    Poland
    Poland, Polish
    Hi, Egoexpress!

    The words "role" and "ball" are pronounced in a different way:

    a) "role" is like road, below
    b) "ball" is like horse, bought

    A&AJnr
     
  4. Arrius

    Arrius Senior Member

    Spain
    English, UK
    There is also a row of houses or people in the sense of a line, a file, also pronounced /ro:/ (as in so and know). And the homonym hard or soft roe which refers to fish eggs, pronounced the same way.
     
  5. Aardvark01

    Aardvark01 Senior Member

    Midlands, England
    British English (Midlands)
    I agree with 20000miles and audiolaik.
    The 'o' in 'row' is never pronounced as the 'a' in ball, only /roʊ/ (as the 'o' in role) or /raʊ/ (as the 'a' in 'bat').
    Have you heard 'row' pronounced 'raw' // somewhere?
     
  6. Paulfromitaly

    Paulfromitaly MODerator

    Brescia (Italy)
    Italian
    I suggest you look up the word row in any of the dictionaries available on-line and listen to the pronunciation.

    Cambridge
     
  7. entangledbank

    entangledbank Senior Member

    London
    English - South-East England
    This looks like interference from Egoexpress's native Hungarian. The Hungarian vowel ó [o:] is the closest that language has to both the English vowels of role and ball.
     
  8. Hermione Golightly Senior Member

    SW London
    British English
    I have no problem with row and role or row and now, but I can't think of row pronounced as the a in bat. What is the meaning of row pronounced this way ?

    Hermione
     
  9. ><FISH'> Senior Member

    United Kingdom
    British English
    Raw
    Bat

    = Row (to argue)
     
  10. Hermione Golightly Senior Member

    SW London
    British English
    Thank you Fish for the explanation.

    I say raw like roa(r),boar/bore, gnaw, thought. I say bat like (bat)ter/that/hat/ and in my case, bath and glass. I say row (= argue) to rhyme with now/ how/cow/ thou/bough.
    And I say row( your boat) to rhyme with know, though, toe and beau.

    Is this what they mean by the Block Hall of English pronunciation?

    Never mind- I daresay it isn't life threatening.

    Cheers
    :)
    Hermione
     
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2010
  11. Loob

    Loob Senior Member

    English UK
    Hi Hermione

    No doubt Aardie and Fish will correct me if I misrepresent them, but I'm sure what they're referring to is the fact that the vowel sound of "row"-to-rhyme-with-"cow" is a diphthong, the first half of which is "a" as in "bat". Try saying ra-oo and you'll get the idea;).
     
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2010
  12. Hermione Golightly Senior Member

    SW London
    British English
    Ah yes, I do see now, sort of, thank you Loob. The trouble is that when I say 'ra-oo' like that it sounds as if I am pretending to be somebody else talking and I freak myself out.
    No dipthongs for Geordie me.

    :D

    Hermione
     
  13. Aardvark01

    Aardvark01 Senior Member

    Midlands, England
    British English (Midlands)
    Hi Hermione,
    The fact that you come from the Newcastle area adds another factor to this discussion as I guess you pronounce 'row your boat' differently. Am I correct in thinking you pronounce 'row your boat' as 'raw ya bort'?
    Using International Phonetic Script/Alphabet (IPS/IPA) most of us say /roʊ yə boʊt/ but Geordies and others in the North say /rɔ yə bɔt/


    Egoexpress: it would help us to know what area you live in. Are you learning English in the Newcastle area?
     
  14. Egoexpress

    Egoexpress Senior Member

    Hungary, Hungarian
    It's been a long time but I used to live in London back then.

    Thanks very much for your help though.
     
  15. ><FISH'> Senior Member

    United Kingdom
    British English
    A Geordie would say it "Rö ya böt" or "Rå ya båt", depending on individual preference.
     
  16. Scalloper Senior Member

    UK, English
    I don't think it's a matter of preference so much as of location - the further south you go, the more open the vowel is. But this is also true of the "raw" vowel; I doubt there is anywhere where the pronunications are identical.
     
  17. pratz New Member

    hindi
    well the correct pronunciation is of that as it is in "cow"
     
  18. RM1(SS)

    RM1(SS) Senior Member

    Connecticut
    English - US (Midwest)
    Note that all of the people who have answered thus far are BE speakers. No AE speaker would say that any two of the vowels in raw, bat or row (argue) are the same.
     
  19. Loob

    Loob Senior Member

    English UK
    Erm... No BrE-speaker would say that the vowels in raw, bat or row (argue) are the same.
    :confused:
     
  20. RM1(SS)

    RM1(SS) Senior Member

    Connecticut
    English - US (Midwest)
    Posts 5, 9, and 11 (the latter being one of yours).
     
  21. Loob

    Loob Senior Member

    English UK
    Sorry, I don't understand, RM1(SS). We're probably violently agreeing:).
     
  22. RM1(SS)

    RM1(SS) Senior Member

    Connecticut
    English - US (Midwest)
     
  23. Loob

    Loob Senior Member

    English UK
    Ah, I think I may have worked out what's going on here, and why RM1(SS) and I were talking at cross-purposes....

    The point I was making was that the first part of the diphthong in "row=argument" is the same sound as the vowel sound in "bat".

    But ... the vowel sound in BrE "bat" has changed over time: see Nat's post here:
    So, yes, it's entirely possible that speakers of AmE won't hear the first part of the diphthong in "cow" as the same sound as the vowel sound of "bat".

    (Sorry, RM1(SS):).)
     
  24. natkretep

    natkretep Moderato con anima

    Singapore
    English (Singapore/UK), basic Chinese
    Interestingly, there is a fair amount of variation in the row (cow, mouth) vowel, and the starting point could certainly be very close to the vowel in bat.

    In Southern England, [ɛʊ] is common - in other words, beginning with with roughly the vowel in bet. Cockney has [æə], beginning with the vowel in General American bat. I've heard a similar mouth vowel in the US and Australia.
     
  25. RM1(SS)

    RM1(SS) Senior Member

    Connecticut
    English - US (Midwest)
    I've known people from the South who, for example, pronounce now as "naow," but the added vowel sounds to me more like the a of bay than that of bat.
     

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