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Letter Combinations for / ʊ /
The pure vowel sound / ʊ / can be formed by these letter combinations:
U, OO, O, OU, OR, and OE
There are very few minimal pairs in English which involve the / ʊ / sound and which can confuse learners.
The most notable ones are
- full / fʊl / and fool / fuːl /
- looker / ˈlʊkər / and lucre / ˈluːkə /
- pull / pʊl / and pool / puːl /
- soot / sʊt / and suit / suːt /
/ ʊ / and / ʌ /
There are a few minimal pairs that use the / ʊ / and the / ʌ / vowels that are worth mentioning.
- book / bʊk / and buck / bʌk /
- could / kʊd / and cud / kʌd /
- look / lʊk / and luck / lʌk /
- rook / rʊk / and ruck / rʌk /
- stood / stʊd / and stud / stʌd /
- took / tʊk / and tuck / tʌk /
/ ʊ / and / əʊ /
There are a few minimal pairs that use the / ʊ / and the / əʊ / vowels that are worth mentioning.
- brook / brʊk / and broke / brəʊk /
- cook / kʊk / and coke / kəʊk /
- cooks / kʊks / and coax / kəʊks /
- could / kʊd / and code / kəʊd /
- crook / krʊk / and croak / krəʊk /
- full / fʊl / and foal / fəʊl /
- good / ɡʊd / and goad / ɡəʊd /
- hooks / hʊks / and hoax / həʊks /
- pull / pʊl / and pole / pəʊl /
- should / ʃʊd / and showed / ʃəʊd /
- stood / stʊd / and stowed / stəʊd /
/ ʊ / and / aʊ /
There are a three minimal pairs that use the / ʊ / and the / aʊ / vowels that are worth mentioning.
- could / kʊd / and cowed / kaʊd /
- full / fʊl / and foul / faʊl /
- put / pʊt / and pout / paʊt /
The pronunciation Activator will give you 10 randomly selected questions designed to activate your pronunciation and listening skills regarding the vowel sound in woman.
Interactive British English IPA Chart
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