A phonetic generalisation regarding the [z]- and [s]-sound (plural form)

Discussion in 'English Only' started by PINERO, Mar 4, 2007.

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  1. PINERO New Member

    Norway, Iceland
    I don't know if this is the correct forum to ask this, but I'll give it a try..
    It has to do with the phonetic pronounciation of words.
    Here are two examples:
    The word "dogs" is pronounced with a [z]-sound at the end.
    The word "cats" is pronounced with a [s]-sound at the end.

    Now, my question is this; The choice between the [z] or [s] is determined by a simple phonetic generalisation. All the sounds immediately preceding [z] have one property that differs them from the sounds immediately preceding [s]. What is this property?

    I know this is a tough nut, but I have an assignment about this due tomorrow and I'm really stuck. Any help would be fantastic.
     
  2. panjandrum

    panjandrum Occasional Moderator

    Belfast, Ireland
    English-Ireland (top end)
    Sorry PINERO, but we can't help you with the research for tomorrow's homework.
     
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