b, g before a consonant (pronunciation)

Discussion in 'Deutsch (German)' started by johnkeyoneab2, Jan 14, 2013.

  1. johnkeyoneab2 Member


    When d and g are at the end of a German word,I know that they are prouounced as t and k,however,when they are NOT at the end,but precede a consonant in a word,I'm very confused as to their pronunciation.For example,the d in endlich is not at the end,but it is still prouounced as t;the g in möglich is not at the end,but it is still prouounced as k.I looked up these two words in wiktionary and just when I thought that whenever d and g precede a consonant they should be prouounced as t and k,another word attracted my attention,which is ludwig.To prove what I thought was right,I looked it up in wiktionary which tells me that the d is prouounced as d,NOT t.

    So why is it that d in endlich and ludwig are prouounced differently?

    your help would be very much appreciated.
  2. Demiurg

    Demiurg Senior Member

  3. johnkeyoneab2 Member

    Thank you very much.So When d and g precede a consonant in a word,they do sound like t and k even if they are not at the end of a word?
  4. Hutschi

    Hutschi Senior Member

    Hi, note also syllables. It is hartened at the end of syllables, if the next syllable starts with a consonant.
    They are not hardened in words like "Draht" or "Grat", for example, where they are at the beginning of a syllable.

    Also note that "ig" at the end of words mostly is spoken like "ich".
    Ludwig [ˈluːtvɪç] German wiktionary
    (In some regions and in "hypercorrect" pronunciation it is spoken "ik".)
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2013
  5. johnkeyoneab2 Member

    but the d in Friedrich in German wiktionary is pronounced as d
  6. Hutschi

    Hutschi Senior Member

    In "Friedrich" it is at the begin of a syllable. At the begin it is not hardened.
    If you consider "d" etymologically correct as at the end of the first syllable, it is hardened.

    But we speak it as
    IPA: [ˈfʀiːdʀɪç]

    like "Frie-drich".

    (Note that I updated my first answer.)

    In Ludwig we speak it like "Lut-wich".
    IPA: [ˈluːtvɪç]

    Note that the spoken syllables are essential, not the written ones. The spelling reform accepted in many cases the spoken forms now for "Silbentrennung".
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2013
  7. johnkeyoneab2 Member

    Do you mean that Friedrich should be considered as Frie + drich?
  8. johnkeyoneab2 Member

    Thank you very much for your help:).This matter has confused me for a long time.
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2013
  9. Hutschi

    Hutschi Senior Member

    Yes, in spoken form it is reinterpreted. Etymologically this is wrong. But we have such things in a lot of words, especially with "r":
    wo-rauf and wor-auf (it is spoken wo-rauf - Duden recommends syllable separation wo-rauf now ...) This is a plus of the spelling reform.
    wo-rin and wor-in (it is spoken wo-rin - Duden recommends syllable separation wo-rin now ...)

    In case of Friedrich see: http://www.duden.de/rechtschreibung/Friedrich_maennlicher_Vorname

    Because of spoken syllables, in "Tag" it is hardened but not in "Tage" because of spoken syllables "Ta-ge".
    IPA: [taːk], Plural: [ˈtaːɡə]

    Combined words
    Because of this "words and syllable" principle it is hardened in "Taganfang" - because "an" belongs to the next word and starts with a short break and a "Knacklaut".
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2013
  10. johnkeyoneab2 Member

    Thank you again for your patient and detailed explanation.I appreciate it very much.Hope I can always rely on you for help.:p

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