pronunciation: Y sounds like Ch.

< Previous | Next >

kewkiez11219

Senior Member
basic Chinese
Hi guys. It was mentioned many times in this forum that some native speakers pronounce the y with a sound similar to the ch sound, especially if the y is preceded by a d. However, is it exactly a ch sound or is it something different? To my understanding at least, for the ch sound, the the upper and lower back teeth are contacting each other and the lips are protruded. For the Y however, the upper and lower teeth in the back should not be touching. So in the case where the y is pronounced almost like a ch as in "did you do this?", should the back teeth be touching for the "y that sounds like a ch"? I hope this isn't a confusing question. Thank you so much guys. :D
 
  • perpend

    Banned
    American English
    No back teeth at all, for me.

    In "did you do this", the "Y" sound is in the front of the mouth, on the alveolar ridge, and does sound like "ch".

    Didchu do this?
     

    natkretep

    Moderato con anima (English Only)
    English (Singapore/UK), basic Chinese
    I would expect /dʒ/ rather than /tʃ/ - in other words, a 'j' sound rather than a 'ch' sound because the end of 'did' is voiced - didju do this?
     

    kewkiez11219

    Senior Member
    basic Chinese
    I would expect /dʒ/ rather than /tʃ/ - in other words, a 'j' sound rather than a 'ch' sound because the end of 'did' is voiced - didju do this?
    No back teeth at all, for me.

    In "did you do this", the "Y" sound is in the front of the mouth, on the alveolar ridge, and does sound like "ch".

    Didchu do this?
    So it's not exactly a chu sound since the back teeth are not touching? Also, I think I would agree with natkretep, it does sound more like a j than a ch sound, and just asking, aren't the j and ch the same position with the back teeth touching but j is voiced instead? If they are the same position, it wouldn't really have changed my question, but I'm glad you brought it up. :):)
     

    perpend

    Banned
    American English
    I can neither produce the "j" nor the "ch" sound, in your context, with my back teeth, kewkiez, for what it's worth.
     

    Faramarz2015

    Senior Member
    Persian
    I would expect /dʒ/ rather than /tʃ/ - in other words, a 'j' sound rather than a 'ch' sound because the end of 'did' is voiced - didju do this?
    Although my teacher (a prof. of phonology) isn't a native, he pronounces "did you know what you want" as "diyou know wha you want".
     

    perpend

    Banned
    American English
    I just checked my teeth. They do not touch for the "ch" sound, and they do not touch for the "j" sound.

    Is your teacher a native speaker of English, kewkiez?

    EDIT: Maybe this occurs in BrE or Indian English, or "Hong Kong English".
     

    kewkiez11219

    Senior Member
    basic Chinese
    I just checked my teeth. They do not touch for the "ch" sound, and they do not touch for the "j" sound.

    Is your teacher a native speaker of English, kewkiez?
    Yeah she is. It's probably my fault. I probably misheard/misinterpreted her when she explained it to me. Perhaps she said that the teeth should be together, meaning that the upper and lower teeth should be close to each other, but not exactly touching. Now that I've tried saying it without my back teeth touching, I find that the sides of my tongue are slightly touching the back teeth instead.
     
    Last edited:

    JAQT

    Senior Member
    English - American
    So in the case where the y is pronounced almost like a ch as in "did you do this?" ...
    In the phrase "did you", I have never pronounced the y as a ch -- as in "didchu" or "didju" or anything similar -- and I know of no one who does.

    A "did ja" pronunciation of "did 'ya" happens in informal speech, but not "did ju", at least not for me.
     

    Uriel-

    Senior Member
    American English
    TY run together is pronounced as CH. Don't you often sounds like don't chew. DY run together is pronounced as J. Did you can sound like did jew. The two sounds are very distinct and are not interchangeable.
     

    kewkiez11219

    Senior Member
    basic Chinese
    My back teeth don't touch either when I pronounce 'ch' and 'j'.
    I just checked my teeth. They do not touch for the "ch" sound, and they do not touch for the "j" sound.

    Is your teacher a native speaker of English, kewkiez?

    EDIT: Maybe this occurs in BrE or Indian English, or "Hong Kong English".
    If ch/j doesn't require any back teeth touching, what about the sh sound? The sh has a similar position to that of ch and J.
     

    kewkiez11219

    Senior Member
    basic Chinese
    My back teeth don't touch when I pronounce 'sh' either.

    Edit. Not just my back teeth: none of my teeth touch when I pronounce these sounds.
    I'm not sure my teeth ever touch when I'm speaking. :confused: Maybe if I'm trying to sound like a '30s-era gangster I kind of close them on one side.
    Oh man, thanks guys, you made me realize this huge mistake I'm making. Are there any sounds in English that do require the back teeth or any teeth touching? For example, does the S sound requires back teeth touching since it's a sound similar to that of sh. Because when I make the s sound, the back/middle teeth are touching.
     

    natkretep

    Moderato con anima (English Only)
    English (Singapore/UK), basic Chinese
    The consonants that require contact with the upper teeth are called dental consonants. See Wikipedia:
    A dental consonant is a consonant articulated with the tongue against the upper teeth, such as /t/, /d/, /n/, and /l/ in some languages
    As far as I know, the lower teeth don't come into contact with the tongue for speech.
     

    kewkiez11219

    Senior Member
    basic Chinese
    The consonants that require contact with the upper teeth are called dental consonants. See Wikipedia:

    As far as I know, the lower teeth don't come into contact with the tongue for speech.
    yeah, but I'm not questioning about that. I'm questioning about the the lower teeth coming in contact with the upper teeth. For some reason, when I produce the ch, j, sh, and s sounds, my upper and lower teeth come into contact with each other, which apparently is not the correct way of articulation.:confused::confused:
     
    Last edited:

    london calling

    Senior Member
    UK English
    For some reason, when I produce the ch, j, sh, and s sounds, my upper and lower teeth come into contact with each other, which apparently is not the correct way of articulation.:confused::confused:
    You'll have to practice making these sounds properly, then. I mean pronounce them with no contact between upper and lower teeth.:)

    The only instance I can think of when my teeth touch is when I'm pretending to growl like a dog: grrrrrr. I clench my teeth in this case.
     

    kewkiez11219

    Senior Member
    basic Chinese
    Yeah, as far as I know nobody speaks that way.
    You'll have to practice making these sounds properly, then. I mean pronounce them with no contact between upper and lower teeth.:)

    The only instance I can think of when my teeth touch is when I'm pretending to growl like a dog: grrrrrr. I clench my teeth in this case.
    Wait, so not even the s sound requires the upper teeth to contact the lower teeth? When I was young, it seems to make sense to me to contact my upper and lower back teeth together since it seems to look that way when someone makes the s sound in front of me. For some reason, it made sense to me that aspirating air through clenched teeth can produce that hissing quality of the s. I've been speaking this way since forever. With good practice, I hope I can fix this. :D:D
     

    Glenfarclas

    Senior Member
    English (American)
    Wait, so not even the s sound requires the upper teeth to contact the lower teeth?
    That's right, it doesn't.

    When I was young, it seems to make sense to me to contact my upper and lower back teeth together...
    Are you sure that's what you're doing? Maybe your jaw is constructed differently from mine, but to be honest I can't really close my back teeth without closing all the rest of my teeth too. Can you close your back teeth while leaving your front teeth open? :confused:
     

    kewkiez11219

    Senior Member
    basic Chinese
    That's right, it doesn't.



    Are you sure that's what you're doing? Maybe your jaw is constructed differently from mine, but to be honest I can't really close my back teeth without closing all the rest of my teeth too. Can you close your back teeth while leaving your front teeth open? :confused:
    Well, if your definition of front teeth means the two middle front teeth, then yes. I can close my back teeth without closing the two front teeth. Although in the mirror, my front teeth does seem like it's touching, but I actually don't feel it closing at the front despite the back teeth actually touching. In fact, if I were to attempt making the sh/s sounds without the back teeth closing, it sounds/feels as if I have a lisp.
     

    Keith Bradford

    Senior Member
    English (Midlands UK)
    There is a certain accent in English, affected by ex-army officers and other emotionally repressed people, where the teeth are clenched together. Hence the saying "You can recognise a gentleman because he can say "Poona" without opening his teeth". (Poona is a town in India favoured by British officers during the Raj.)

    I once knew a local government official who seemed to talk without ever opening his teeth. It is possible and gives a very specific accent.

    But on the whole, English is not pronounced like this. Forget the idea of "the upper and lower back teeth contacting each other..."
     

    Cenzontle

    Senior Member
    English, U.S.
    I've read a lot about phonetics (of various languages, including English), and I don't think I've ever encountered any reference at all to the lower teeth!
     

    kewkiez11219

    Senior Member
    basic Chinese
    There is a certain accent in English, affected by ex-army officers and other emotionally repressed people, where the teeth are clenched together. Hence the saying "You can recognise a gentleman because he can say "Poona" without opening his teeth". (Poona is a town in India favoured by British officers during the Raj.)

    I once knew a local government official who seemed to talk without ever opening his teeth. It is possible and gives a very specific accent.

    But on the whole, English is not pronounced like this. Forget the idea of "the upper and lower back teeth contacting each other..."
    I've read a lot about phonetics (of various languages, including English), and I don't think I've ever encountered any reference at all to the lower teeth!
    Very helpful. My instructor did say that my s doesn't sound right for some reason. She always tells me to relax my jaw more, and that I should stop clenching my teeth. I thought teeth clenching is only an exception for the ch/sh/and s sound. Thank you so much guys for helping me realize my mistake. With some practice, hope I can produce these sounds without teeth clenching and a lisp.
     
    < Previous | Next >
    Top