Pronounciation of "either"

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Silvia B

Senior Member
Italy - Italian
Hi!

I happened to hear the word "either" pronounced in 2 different ways...but...which one is correct?!?
I don't know how to write the pronounciations... the first is with the italian sound of "I" (english "e") and the second of "AI" (english "I"). (sorry for the bad attempt...if you don't understand just ask...).

Thanks
 
  • moodywop

    Banned
    Italian - Italy
    Silvia B said:
    Hi!

    I happened to hear the word "either" pronounced in 2 different ways...but...which one is correct?!?
    I don't know how to write the pronounciations... the first is with the italian sound of "I" (english "e") and the second of "AI" (english "I").
    Silvia

    The /i:/pronunciation is more common in the U.S., the /ai/pronunciation in the UK. Having said that, a minority of U.S. speakers use /ai/and quite a few of my English friends(esp. from the North) use /i:/.

    Am I right in assuming you're studying English at university? If so, can I recommend two books?

    There's the excellent Longman Pronunciation Dictionary. It lists UK and US pronunciations. OK, all dictionaries do but in this one you'll find proper nouns too, even brands like Nike or Hyundai. In some cases you even get the results of a poll: either....BrE poll panel preference,/ai/ 88%, /i:/ 12%. And on the Longman online dictionary you can hear UK and US pronunciations.

    For grammar and usage there is a unique book called Practical English Usage(OUP). It's arranged alphabetically and extremely user-friendly. As a teacher I get free inspection copies so I've examined practically every textbook on the market and I can assure you there isn't one that comes close. It's so good that all my English friends who teach in Italy use it to clear up their own uncertainties or find good examples.

    Btw I don't work for Longman or OUP:)

    Carlo

    PS The correct spelling is pronunciation not pronounciation. But it's amazing how many native speakers spell it and even pronounce it incorrectly. It's even listed in usage books for native speakers as a common mistake.
     

    Silvia B

    Senior Member
    Italy - Italian
    Many thanks Carlo :) that was really helpful

    Anyway, I am not studying English at University but on my own.
    Just because it has always been my favourite subject. I am not studying anymore, but still trying to keep updated on the things I love the most. (among them, English :) )

    And.. thanks for the books' advice!

    Bye
    Silvia
     

    disegno

    Senior Member
    United States English
    Silvia B said:
    Hi!

    I happened to hear the word "either" pronounced in 2 different ways...but...which one is correct?!?
    I don't know how to write the pronounciations... the first is with the italian sound of "I" (english "e") and the second of "AI" (english "I"). (sorry for the bad attempt...if you don't understand just ask...).

    Thanks
    Questo mi fa pensare di una canzone americana che Fred Astaire e Ginger Rogers hanno cantato nel film "Swing Time" chiamato "Let's Call the Whole thing off". La canzone riferisce a terminare una storia di amore perchè tutt'è due dicono le cose in un modo diverso.

    You say eether (either) and I say eyether (either),
    You say neether (neither) and I say nyther (neither);
    Eether, eyether, neether, nyther,
    Let's call the whole thing off!
    You like potato and I like potahto,
    You like tomato and I like tomahto;
    Potato, potahto, tomato, tomahto!
    Let's call the whole thing off!
     
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