The key to mastering the American English accent often lies in the details. One pronunciation detail that is often tricky for non-native English speakers is how to pronounce the past-test -ed ending. Want to master this sound? Take a look at our pronunciation guide below!
The “-ed” endings of past tense verbs can be pronounced three different ways:
– /d/ a “d” sound, such as at the end of the word “bed”
– /t/ a “t” sound, such as at the end of the word “not”
– /ǝd/ a separate syllable which sounds much like the “-id” portion of the word “kid”
Over the next few weeks we’ll discuss each of these sounds individually in detail and provide you with plenty of examples to help you master the American English past tense. Today, we’ll talk about the first of these sounds: /d/
The /d/ sound is used when the root word ends in any voiced sound that isn’t /d/. When a word ends in a /d/ sound, this means the d is added direction on to the last consonant or vowel without inserting any extra sounds in between. A common pronunciation error for non-native speakers is to pronounce the /d/ as separate syllable by putting a “schwa” vowel before it (e.g. pronouncing “planned” as plan-id). Take a look at the examples below:
All of the following past-tense verbs are pronounced with a /d/ at the end. Practice saying them aloud:
Take a look at the video below to hear Corporate Speech Solutions founder and President Jayne Latz talk more about past tense endings in Standard American English:
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