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The Glottal Stop

This lesson is classified as: Pronunciation | IPA Symbols | Speaking

This lesson will tell you what a glottal stop is and then tell you how to use it. A glottal stop is also known as the voiceless glottal plosive and it’s used in many languages besides English. In fact, you probably use it without being aware of it. The glottal stop is called the glottal stop because the sound is made when the vocal cords close and stop the flow of air. The gap between the vocal cords is called the glottis. The glottal stop is also known as the voiceless glottal plosive, which means their air flow is obstructed between the lungs and the mouth by the closing of the vocal cords. The most pronounced use of the glottal stop can be found in Cockney English where the glottal stop replaces the /p/, the /t/, and the /k/ sounds when they are preceded by a stressed vowel sound and are followed by an unstressed vowel sound.


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