What’s Up With The American T?

What’s Up With The American T? {American Accent}

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Get ready for an exclusive English lesson, teaching you all about how Americans pronounce 'T'. You'll learn insider tips and examples that will help give your speech the General American Accent in no time. Unlock this linguistic knowledge today - learn to master /t/ pronunciation!

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A Quick Summary of the Rules

  1. T at the Beginning of a Word: Pronounced as /T/ with a pop or a puff of air that we call aspiration 
    • Examples: time, tell, take
  2. T or RT Between Vowels: Pronounced as a light /D/ 
    • Examples: water, started, it is  EXCEPTION: T at the Beginning of the Strongest Syllable
  3. T at the Beginning of the Strongest Syllable: Pronounced as /T/ 
    • Examples: martini, Italian, petite
  4. T or RT Before a Consonant: Stops before it pops 
    • Examples: it was, network, absolutely, not that part
  5. NT Between Vowels in Single Word: Pronounced as /T/ 
    • Examples: center, internet, winter
  6. T is part of word ending /-tuhn/: Stop “t”, shorten vowel, sustain /N/ 
    • Examples: button, curtain, kitten
  7. T Is Part of Consonant Cluster:  Pronounced as /T/ 
    • Examples: first, wept, fact
  8. T Is Silent or Not Pronounced
    • Examples:  Christmas, listen, buffet