34

Consonant density This is a factor because consonants are often perceived more harsh than vowels. German is a very vowel-rich language. There are reasonable vowel definitions containing 23 of them (see, e.g., this list) plus three diphthongs¹. Consequently, vowels have a high information density,² we do not have to use that many of them, which in turn ...


15

As @Jan said, the so called Auslautverhärtung definitely plays into that, but if you think in terms of pronunciation and intonation you'll also notice that many languages link their words together in ways that the German language simply doesn't. Take English for example; among other things, words that begin with a vowel are usually linked to the word that ...


10

Ich wage den Versuch einer Antwort für Monophthonge, und beziehe mich ausschließlich auf Phoneme. Ich verwende den Begriff Gespanntheit für das Merkmal, das einen Vokal von seinem „relativ offenerem Partner“ unterscheidet (etwa /i/ zu /ɪ/). Listen auf Wikipedia sind natürlich immer mit Vorsicht zu genießen, aber das liegt aber gerade bei diesem Thema daran, ...


10

The pronunciation you heard for both Dostojewski and Gouda are the ones every German would reproduce. I would blame school subjects, mostly. While everyone gets taught English and many people French, which also means that there is a critical mass of speakers of those languages that everyone will have heard the correct pronunciation, Russian and Dutch are ...


9

The answer is no. This may seem tricky to you because in words as der Rest, die Pest, das Fest there is indeed an ɛ. BUT, as a basic rule, pronounciation of vowels in stems is stable in German, and if there ever is a vowel change, an Ablaut, this substantial change is marked by using a different vowel character/diphthong. lesen → sie liest


9

Why do you think it's an oddity? The sound [w] (as in the English words "wind" [wɪnd] or "weep" [wiːp]) does not exist in German language. The most similar sound that exists in German is [v]. And in English I didn't find any word where "qu" was spoken other than [kw]: consequence [ˈkɒnsɪkwɛns] quick [kwɪk] request [ɹɪˈkwɛst] quality [ˈkwɒlɪti] quarter [...


8

Ich hoffe, dass es in Ordnung ist wenn ich auf Deutsch antworte. Es ist meine Muttersprache, und darin kann ich mich besser ausdrücken als auf Englisch. Auf Anfrage übersetzte ich meine Antwort jedoch auch gerne ins Englische. Die Beobachtung, dass Deutschsprachige generell dazu tendieren, Wörter bestimmter Sprachen (Englisch, Französisch) wie in der ...


7

'What happened' is a very broad question, that in this context requires a multitude of answers. What happened in spoken German These words derive from old Proto-Germanic stems that indeed contained a [s] sound. *swōtuz for süß *sebun for sieben *sunþrą for Süden, main form of süd- Throughout the course of sound shifts and two millenia, these sounds had ...


7

Here are some ones from my own experience: The word order is at times very confusing. For example, in Spanish, we might say, "yo no estoy haciendo eso", while in German one would say "Ich mache das nicht" (the negation goes after the verb). Also, in Spanish the omitted subject is very common (e.g. "Pasó como te dije"), whereas it is less often used in ...


6

What is your mother tongue? In same cases this can explain certain difficulties. There is a path from pronounciation to writing it, but if you don't have access to the right pronounciation or you pronounce it wrong because mother tongue makes it hard to learn, you have one source of help less. A native english speaker often has difficulties to pronounce the "...


5

Yes, they would. iShelf is pronounced [aɪʃɛlf] and iSelf is pronounced [aɪsɛlf]. The differing sounds [ʃ] and [s] are both part of the German phoneme repertoire and distinguishing them is essential to understand the German language. For example, the German words Busch ([bʊʃ]) and Bus ([bʊs]) or Sex ([sɛks]) and Schecks ([ʃɛks]) only differ by that sound. ...


5

Another difference is that "b" and "w" is very close in Spanish. So words such as "Badewanne" (bath tube) are often pronounced similiar to "Wadebanne".


5

As a native Spanish speaker, I would say that the most common mistakes are: Phonetic: As there are no sounds like "ä", "ö" or "ü" in Spanish, Spanish speakers tend to pronounce them as "e", "o" and "u" respectively. There is also the difference between "sch", "ch", "tsch" and "s" at the beginning of some words which can cause some difficulties. Grammar: ...


5

The classical book concerning this topic is Der kleine Hey, which is also used by professional singers. As I just learned, there is also an edition with an enclosed DVD (ISBN 9783795707026), which gives an impression, how the mouth should look like etc.


5

When /t/ and /z/ meet, they are pronounced as [ts], when /z/ and /z/ meet, they are pronounced as [sː] (a long [s]). In northern German varieties lenis obstruents such as /z/ become voiced when surrounded on both sides by voiced sounds (vowels and other sonorants). In your examples, the /z/ is preceded by other obstruents, so voicing is blocked. At least ...


5

German has two different schwa sounds. The e-Schwa [ə] (or simply Schwa) appears in reduction syllables with -e or -en ending. In addition, this e-Schwa is often reduced to nothing in syllables with -en ending. The a-Schwa [ɐ] (or Tiefschwa) appears in reduction syllables with -er ending. It's never reduced to nothing. Sometimes, a normal a is realized as ...


4

In Standard High German (other than some southern dialects of German) [z] (voiced alveolar fricative) is an allophone of [s] (voiceless alveolar fricative) when it occurs in the onset of a syllable, that is you will never find a [s] in the beginning of a (phonological) word. Since this is a universal phonological „rule“ it is not necessary to encode this in ...


4

Wrzlprmft’s answer is great and definitely deserves the acceptance. However, there is another aspect he failed to address: aspiration. In German, (almost) all unvoiced stops are aspirated, whether they occur word-initial (Tor) word-final (rot) or word-internal (hatte). By comparison, in French or Finnish stops are always unaspirated and in English they are ...


4

An integral part of phonetics (Phonetik in German) is research not only on rules of the quality but also on rules for the quantity of a vocal. The German term for this would be Vokalquantität or Vokallänge


4

It's grundsätzlich yet gründlich. So, your confusion is basically about the tonal change in regard to word class? Remember all but the shortest German words follow the same pattern: ([prefix(es)] – stem)... – [word class marker(s)] – case/verb ending Prefixes and word class markers are optional. The prefix(es) – stem part may be there multiple times. ...


4

This is what's called coarticulation: sounds are influenced by the surrounding sounds. When you say nicht Gräfinger, the /t/ is unvoiced, but the following /g/ is voiced. Your vocal tract cannot switch off the vibrating glottis that fast, so there this feature will bleed into the following sound: either the /g/ becomes unvoiced and changes to /k/, or the /t/ ...


4

Phonetics/Phonology is not really my area of research, so someone else may be better equipped to respond, but it appears to me that this has to do with the boundaries of the (phonetic) syllables. If you look at hieraus, voran, hierauf, their common feature is that the r sticks to the preposition: hie|raus, vo|ran, hie|rauf. Unlike in your second group of ...


4

I suspect that the former case, where the article is attached to a preceding verb («ich hab’s Problem gelöst», «er fährt’s Auto in die Garage») is more common than the latter case, where the article is reduced to «s» all by itself («’s Kind ist eingeschlafen», «’s Wasser ist zu heiss»). Nonetheless, the latter case occurs in some Swiss German dialects, e.g. ...


4

The same pronunciation also applies to the chemist Curtius and all others with the same surname. In words of Latin origin that end in -tium, -tius, -tion, -tial, -tiell and others with the general pattern of ti + vowel, the t underwent softening in various degrees in different European languages. In English in a word such as nation, the ti is effecticely ...


3

Meine Erfahrung vor allem beim Deutsch-Unterricht für Geflüchtete, speziell aus arabisch-sprechenden Ländern, sagt mir: Es gibt im Deutschen 15 Vokal-Phoneme. Deutsch - die Sprache mit 15 Vokalen! Die Liste in der Answer 1 ist sehr gut, lediglich die Nummern 5/16. bzw. 2/17 fallen in der Praxis zusammen. Phoneme sind für mich Laute (Lautspektren mit ...


3

Es gibt keinen Unterschied in der Aussprache zwischen der Konjunktion sosehr und der adverbialen Wendung so sehr. Es kann natürlich vorkommen, dass der Betonung halber ein Vokal in der adverbialen Wendung langgezogen wird — in aller Regel wohl das O in so. Ansonsten ist aber phonetisch kein Unterschied aufzuweisen. Während die Konjunktion stets an erster ...


3

This is not restricted to s, it also happens for p, t, k, f resp. b, d, g, w (and I think v needs extra rules in the first place). The Wikipedia article states the rules between this switch between the lenis/fortis-variants in detail, and says this is a "typical phenomenon in German". To make things even more confusing, it works differently in different ...


3

I think, the answer really neither depends on how well a certain language is spoken in Germany nor the educational level. I rather think, it depends on the assumption, which languages should be spoken correctly with a high level of education. English, French, Latin and old Greek all once were lingua franca in Europe. They are the general compass of old/new ...


3

I don't know about Spanish, but I know many Italian people who speak German. Since Spanish and Italian are both Roman languages, the following problems mostly apply to Spanish too. One problem they face is that some nouns have different genders, for example la luna (fem.) → der Mond (masc.) il sole (masc.) → die Sonne (fem.) Another difficult area are ...


3

Outside of IPA many companies and organizations use their own system to express phonetics, so somewhere on their website there should be a key to their pronunciation system. One thing I noticed is that Hueber is seated in Munich, adaba are from Austria. Therefore some influence from Bavarian dialect may be the cause of a different pronunciation ...


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