Monday, 12 November 2012

Pronunciation of 'ed' endings.

A lot of English Language Students struggle to get the pronunciation of past simple regular verbs correctly.  

Many of our students have found this explanation from the BBC World Service very useful:




Grammar Challenge © BBC Learning English

bbclearningenglish.com

© British Broadcasting Corporation 2007


Nuala's Grammar Explanation

Pronunciation: 'ed' endings 


In the past simple regular verbs end in 'ed' and there are three different ways of pronouncing

these two little letters - / ɪd /, / d / and / t /.


First let's look at the / ɪd / ending.

Regular verbs that end in the sound / t / or / d /, in the past simple the 'ed' ending is

pronounced / ɪd /. Here are some examples:


Examples:

start – started         invite – invited                 want –wanted                 need – needed        decide - decided


The pronunciation of the 'ed' ending for other regular verbs in the past simple depends on

whether the last sound of the infinitive of the verb is voiced or not. Regular verbs that end in

voiced sounds will have / d / as the pronunciation of the 'ed' ending in the past simple. Here

are some examples.


Examples:

smile –smiled             turn - turned          love - loved            seem - seemed

  


Finally, regular verbs that end in unvoiced sounds will have / t / as the pronunciation of the 'ed'

ending in the past simple. Here are some examples.  


Examples:

jump – jumped                 kiss – kissed             wash - washed             look - looked         watch – watched

  

So, to recap. There are three different ways to pronounce the letters '-ed' for regular verbs in

the past simple and the way to choose how to pronounce them depends on the final sound of

the infinitive. 



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