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sound, sounds and vowel


Speech is to be distinguished from voice. It may exist without voice. A whisper is speech without voice. Speech is due to sounds pro duced by the action of the throat, mouth, and nose. In ordinary talking it is accompanied by vocal sounds. In speech, then, are vowel and consonantal sounds.

Vowel sounds are sounds produced in the larynx, whose quality is markedly altered by the shape of the resounding chambers above, especially the mouth. Thus, let a person sound a particular note, and utter the vowel sound, a (as in fatheĽ), e (as a in fate), i (as ee in feet), o (a.s in cold), and a (as oo in foot), and he will find that continuing to sound a note of the same pitch he can produce all the vowel sounds, by alterations in the shape of the mouth prin cipally.

Consonants are sounds produced by inter ruptions of the outgoing current of air, but in some cases are preceded or followed by vocal sounds. The interruption to the outgoing cur rent may take place by movements of the lips, as in pronouncing p, b, f, v. These are labial

consonants (Latin, labium, a lip). if is also a labial consonant, in which there is a vocal sound suddenly interrupted by a lip movement.

When the tongue, in relation with the teeth or hard palate, obstructs the air, dental con sonant:3 are produced, d, t, s. N is a dental consonant, a vocal sound being suddenly checked by the tongue and teeth. S is also a dental sound, caused by the teeth offering an obstruc tion to a continuous rush of air past them.

Gutturals are due to the movements of the root of the tongue in connection with the soft palate or pharynx, such as I-, g, eh, gh, r.

In the production of ng, a vowel sound is interrupted by the approach of the root of the tongue to the soft palate. It is thus a guttural sound.