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Stress

In phonetics, stress is the degree of emphasis given a sound or syllable in speech, also called
lexical stress or word stress. Unlike some other languages, English has variable (or flexible) stress.

I. Kinds of stress
A. Primary stress
1. The strongest degree of stress placed on a syllable in the pronunciation of a word.
2. The mark () used to indicate the strongest degree of stress. In both senses also called primary accent.

B. Secondary stress
1. The degree of stress weaker than a primary accent placed on a syllable in the pronunciation
of a word.
2. The mark () used to indicate secondary stress. Also called In both senses also
called secondary accent .

II. Stress Patterns


Here are some examples of stress patterns of simple words.
All words of two syllables are stressed either on the first syllable or on the second one.

Examples :
Answer
Any
Camel
Honest
Iron

There are few words stressed on the second syllable.

Examples :
Above
ago
canal
believe
again
reply
Words of three or more syllables, in addition to a primary stress, may have a secondary stress as
well. A SECONDARY STRESS, is in between the primary stress and no stress.
Examples :
preposition
examination
fundamental
responsibility

These are some words which when used as nouns or adjectives are stressed on the first syllable,
but when used as verbs are stressed on the second syllable.

Examples :
absent(adj) - absent, (v)
conduct (n) - conduct (v)
decrease (n) - decrease (v)
insult (n) - insult(v)
object (n) - object(v)
present(n) - present(v)
rebel(n) - rebel(v)
subject (n) - subject (v)

This shows that stress has meaning in English.

Words with weak prefixes are stressed on the root and not the prefix.

Examples :

aborad
ahead
aloud
below
beside
reduce

Words ending in ion are stressed on the last syllable but one.

Examples :
application
composition
determination
qualification
The following two syllable suffixes are stressed on the syllable immediately preceding.

Examples :

Ity : activity, electricity, equality


Ian : libiarian, electrician, politician
Ial : artificial, essential, official
Ially : essentially, officially

Ious : anxious, industrious, laborious

Some guidelines for making stress :

1. Mono syllable words : Words having a single syllable.

2. Disyllable words : Words having two syllables.

3. Poly syllable words : Words having three or more syllables.

Dissyllabic Words :

Monosyllable Words : 'go, 'saw, 'house, 'work, 'lose

Stress on The First Syllable : always, women, public, answer, honest

Stress on The Second Syllable : above, defeat, believe, again, reply

Trisyllabic Words :

Stress on The First Syllable : beautiful, citizen, memory, popular, arrogant

Stress on The Second Syllable : deliver, conductor, involvement, experiment, companion

Stress on The Third Syllable : abdication, education, examinations, civilisation, recollection

MODEL :

together.....together
avenue.....avenue
timidityti.....midity
collection.....collection
pragmatic.....pragmatic
surround.....surround