In the last article (part 1), we have discussed five sets of homophones. In case you forget what a homophone is, it is a set of two or more words that have the same pronunciation but have different meanings and spelling such as ‘to’, ‘two’, and ‘too’. In this article, we are discussing five more homophone sets that are sometimes mispronounced by a few learners. The list is as follows:
- Son, sun (/sɅn/)
A lot of learners mistakenly pronounce ‘son’ as /son/. In fact, the way you pronounce it is the same as ‘sun’. Both are NOUNS, but they have different meanings: ‘son’ means a male child, while ‘sun’ is a star in the center of our solar system.
- Knight, night (/naIt/)
English is known for its silent consonant. The consonant ‘k’ is often not pronounced if it is put at the beginning of a word, for example: know, knowledge, knit, etc. the word ‘knight’ also has the silent ‘k’ in the beginning, so it pronounced the same as ‘night’. ‘Knight’ is a NOUN meaning a man given a special honor (or rank) by a king or queen, while ‘night’ (also a NOUN) means the time when it is dark, and people usually sleep at this period.
- Right, write (/raIt/)
Another silent consonant is the /w/ in the word ‘write’. This word should be pronounced the same as ‘right’ (not /wraIt/) as some learners do. ‘Write’ is a VERB meaning-making words/ putting words on a paper/ something else to express ideas. ‘Right’ is an ADJECTIVE which is a synonym to ‘correct’, or it can also mean the opposite of ‘left’.
- Pair, pear (/peә(r)/)
The word ‘pair’ is not pronounced as /pei(r)/; the correct way to pronounce it is /peә(r)/, which is the same as pronouncing ‘pear’. Both are NOUNS. ‘Pair’ means a set of two things, while ‘pear’ is the name of a fruit.
- Hour, our (/aƱә(r)/
Often, beginners pronounce ‘hour’ as /haƱә(r)/. In this NOUN, which means a period of 60 minutes, the /h/ sound is silent, so it pronounced the same as ‘our’ – the POSSESSIVE ADJECTIVE of the pronoun ‘we’.
Thus, these five sets of words conclude our discussion in homophones. An English learner should also master the difference between homophone, homonym, and homograph. We will discuss the trio in the next article. Stay alert, learners!
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