Consonant elision phenomenon in English

Consonant elision
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This lesson will show you in detail how the elision phenomenon occurs in English speech.

1. Loss of final [ v ] in “of” before consonant

– Lots of them = /lɒts əv ðəm] -> /lɒts ə ðəm/ 
– Waste of money = /weɪst əv ˈmʌni/ -> /weɪst ə ˈmʌni/

2. Loss of “t”

• When [ st ] + stop consonant
– last time [ lɑːst taɪm ] →[ lɑːs taɪm] ; fast bus [ fɑːst bʌs ] → [fɑːs bʌs]
• When [ st ] + nasal [ m n ŋ ]
– Best man: /best mæn/ ->[ bes mæn ]; first night fɜːst naɪt/ ->[ fɜːs naɪt ]
• When [ st ] + fricative consonant
– west side: /wɛst saɪd/ ->[ wes saɪd ]
– best friend: /bɛst frɛnd/ ->/bɛs frɛnd/ 
• When [ ft ] + stop ( plosive consonant )
– lift boy: /lɪft bɔɪ/ -> [ lɪf bɔɪ ]
– Stuffed chicken: /stʌft ˈʧɪkɪn/ -> [stʌf ˈʧɪkɪn]
• When [ ft] + nasal
– soft mattress: /sɒft ˈmætrɪs/ -> [sɒf ˈmætrɪs]
– left knee: / left niː/ -> [ lef niː ]
• When [ ft ] + fricative
– left shoe: /left ʃuː/-> [lef ʃuː]
– soft snow: /sɒft snəʊ/ ->[ sɒf snəʊ]
Notes(1): [ t ] in [ st ] and [ ft ] may be also disappeared when other consonants follows but this is less common, Examples:
– last lap [ lɑːs læp ]
– next week [ neks wiːk ]
– best road [ bes rəʊd ]
– soft rain [ sɔf reɪn ]
– soft water [sɔf wɔːtə ]

3. Loss of “d” in [ nd ] & [ md ]

• [ nd ] + nasal
– blind man  [blaɪnd mæn] -> [ blaɪn mæn ]
– kind nurse [ kaɪnd nɜːs ] -> [ kaɪn nɜːs ] 
• [ nd ] + weak stop consonant [ b d ɡ]
– tinned beans [tɪnd biːnz] -> [tɪn biːnz]
– stand guard [stænd gɑːd] [ stæn gɑːd ]
• [ md ] + nasal [ m n ŋ]
– skimmed milk [skɪmd mɪlk]->[ skɪm mɪlk ]
– he seemed good [hi: siːmd gʊd]->[ hiː siːm gʊd ]
– he climbed back [hi: klaɪmd bæk]->[hiː klaɪm bæk ]
notes (2): [ d ] in [ nd , md ] may be also disappear when other consonants follows but this is less common
– blind chance [blaɪnd tʃɑːns]->[ blaɪ tʃɑːns ]
– send seven [send ˈsevn̩]->[ sen sevn ]
– hand-woven [hænd-ˈwəʊvən]->[ hæn wəʊvən ]
– he blamed them [hi bleɪmd ðəm] ->[hi bleɪm ðəm]
– a framed picture [ə freɪmd ˈpɪkʧə]->[ə freɪm pɪktʃə]
When [ t ] or [ d ] occur between 2 other stop consonants they are never heard and you should have them out.
– locked car [lɒkt kɑː] ->[lɒk kɑː] 
– strict parent [ strɪkt pɛərənts → strɪk pɛərənts ]
– He stopped behind [hiː stɔpt bɪhaɪnd → hiː stɔp bɪhaɪnd ]
– Dragged back [ drægd bæk → dræg bæk]
– Rubbed down [ rʌbd daʊn → rʌb daʊn ]
Note ( 3 ) : similar disappearance have taken in the past inside English words, leaving them with a shape which is now normal VD:
– Grandmother [ɡrænmʌðə ] ; handsome [ hænsəm ]; castle [ kɑːsl ] ; postman[ pəʊsmən ];
In all these cases you should use this normal form.There are other cases where two forms may be heard, examples:
– Often [ɔftən ] -> [ɔfn ]
– Kindness [ kaɪndɪs ] or [kaɪn nɪs ]
– Asked [ɑːskt ] or [ɑːst ]; clothes [ kləʊz ] or [kləʊðz ] and we can find whichever we find easiest.

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