|About Us | What's New | Search | Site Map | Contact Us|
You are not logged in. [Log In] Wordsmith.org » Forums » General Topics » Q&A about words » Often Register User Forum List Calendar Active Topics Search FAQ
#203904 - 12/25/11 07:18 PM Often
For years and years, I haven't been able to find the complete, accurate answer. /often/ or /ofen/. Which is the right way to pronounce it?
Please don't tell me it depends on the area where English is spoken. Are there any specific rules available?
Thank you in advance, and Merry Christmas to all at Wordsmisth.
#203906 - 12/25/11 11:08 PM Re: Often [Re: carmita9]
Loc: this too shall pass
it depends on the area.. no, I won't say it.
#203907 - 12/25/11 11:19 PM Re: Often [Re: carmita9]
It's not as simple as just where English is spoken. It can vary from speaker to speaker in the same area. You can go either way and someone will be irritated, but that's their problem, not yours.
#203909 - 12/26/11 11:24 PM Re: Often [Re: carmita9]
Loc: Louisville, Kentucky
Hi, carmita, and welcome. I'm afraid that both pronunciations are considered correct; but you can hear for yourself here. Click on any or all of the dictionaries listed.
#203914 - 12/28/11 09:35 AM Re: Often [Re: carmita9]
The silent 't' was the prescribed pronunciation back a generation or two, but now many pronounce the 't'. (I have even been corrected by people, when I don't pronounce the 't', which is what I learned in school. As others have said, both pronunciations are considered correct, at least in US English.
There are other words, where English silly spelling system has influenced pronunciation. When Middle English speakers borrowed parfit from the Normans, it was pretty much pronounced as spelled. Then the spelling changed to reflect its Latin etymology, perfect, but still pronounced parfit. Before you knew it, it was being pronounced /'pErfEkt/.
Even Spanish has some differences in pronunciation (that have changed over the years and are partially regional, url=v]link[/url]). (Although its orthography it much better than English.)_________________________
Ceci n'est pas un seing.
#203916 - 12/28/11 02:23 PM Re: Often [Re: zmjezhd]
Originally Posted By: zmjezhd[url=v]link[/url]).
Meanwhile, I'm patiently waiting for someone to pronounce the S in island.
#203952 - 12/31/11 12:53 AM Re: Often [Re: Faldage]
Loc: down under
you'll be waiting forever Faldo
no-ones going to take that on, its too difficult!
#203958 - 12/31/11 07:25 AM Re: Often [Re: carmita9]
If you leave the S unvoiced it's just like Iceland. Not particularly difficult on this side of the equator. Voicing the S doesn't add to much to the difficulty. I guess the fact that we don't pronounce the S in isle helps us not pronounce it in island. Still, it's a solecism. Five hundred years of misspelling it doesn't make that spelling correct.
#203960 - 12/31/11 07:40 AM Re: Often [Re: Faldage]
Loc: down under
Its not just misspelling...some letters are obsolete like in esophagus or oesophagus..but some of us (me) like the original spelling!
#203966 - 12/31/11 12:01 PM Re: Often [Re: Candy]
Loc: Lancaster, UK
.. and just to add my bit to the confusion, the C19 UK received pronunciation of 'often' was "orfen". W.S.Gilbert used it to comic effect in The Pirates of Penzance
This pronunciation persisted amongst upper-class speakers in the UK right in to the 1960s._________________________
I'm immortal until proven otherwise
Forum Stats 8952 Members
Max Online: 3341 @ 12/09/11 02:15 PM
Newest Members alphaomega, MarlSF, jfw, hiscientist, MaineMrC
8952 Registered Users
Who's Online 0 registered (), 29 Guests and 3 Spiders online. Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Top Posters (30 Days)
wofahulicodoc 72 LukeJavan8 56 may2point0 37 jheem 1
wwh 13858 Faldage 13803 Jackie 11613 tsuwm 10538 LukeJavan8 8477 Buffalo Shrdlu 7210 wofahulicodoc 6851 AnnaStrophic 6511 Wordwind 6296 of troy 5400
Board Rules · Mark all read Contact Us · Wordsmith.org · Top
Disclaimer: Wordsmith.org is not responsible for views expressed on this site. Use of this forum is at your own risk and liability - you agree to hold Wordsmith.org and its associates harmless as a condition of using it.
Home | Today's Word | Yesterday's Word | Subscribe | FAQ | Archives | Search | Feedback
Wordsmith Talk | Wordsmith Chat
© 1994-2016 Wordsmith