[Spellyans] tavas

Michael Everson everson at evertype.com
Thu May 16 12:03:56 BST 2013

On 16 May 2013, at 11:47, A. J. Trim <ajtrim at msn.com> wrote:

> Are there any contrasting pairs of words where the only difference is the vowel, /y/ versus /ø/?

I don't know, offhand. This is not a new theory or anything, Andrew. This is well known. 

> There may have been these two sounds in Cornish but modern speakers may find it difficult to distinguish them.

When confronted with ‹u› and ‹eu›, learners can say /y/ and /ø/ if they wish, or they can say /i/ and /e/. There's no problem. 

> Many people say “street” and “strait” to sound the much the same,


> so the “spoon” feeding method of tuition fails for those people.

Fine, then find some other way to teach the pronunciation of /y/ and /ø/ if you don't like that one. Or use the words "queen" and "pay".  

> You really need sound recordings to get the right sound. Could sound files be attached to the e-mails? I’m sure that we have the technology to do that by now.

Oh, come on. The Wikipedia has plenty of sound files, if you must use sound files. These sounds are in French and German and are well known. This is not a problem. 

Michael Everson * http://www.evertype.com/

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