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Stress in simple words

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by

july slend salazar lopez

on 10 March 2014

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Transcript of Stress in simple words


Generally there are some rules that may be of some significance to foreign learners of English to determine which syllable or syllables in an English word must be stressed.
Rules
a. Words of one syllable are generally unstressed, if they are purely grammatical words like pronouns, prepositions, etc. Other words ,such as full verbs ,nouns, adjectives, adverbs and the like are stressed .

b. All words of more than one
syllable are stressed.
c. Two-syllable words have stress on the second
syllable if that syllable is long. If it is short,
the first syllable is stressed.
As a matter of fact, this rule, despite its numerous exceptions, apply to many nouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs and prepositions, for example:
Ma'chine 'college
ar'rive 'open
to 'day 'hardly
d. In three- syllable words, the syllable with a long vowel or diphthong ending with more
than one consonant will attract stress. For example:
de'cided ,im'portant ,recom'mend .
This rule applies to both ultimate and the penultimate syllables. Besides, if the second
syllable and third syllable contain short vowels, the first syllable takes stress, for example:
('family and 'cinema) .
e. Syllables which are not stressed often contain the schwa instead of any clearer vowel. It never occurs in stressed ones.
Although, stress placement in polysyllabic words is not predictable, these rules are applied mainly to lexical words.
Thus, distinction has to be made between two major types of stress namely free and fixed stress .The first type is ' movable stress, e.g., stress falls on different syllables depending on the word. The disyllabic English words (subject , import , increase etc.) are stressed either on their first syllable or second syllable according to their grammatical categories as nouns or
verbs respectively .

Suffixes
In the case of the others, foreign learners would probably be better advised to learn the stem + affix combination as an individual item. One of the problems that will be encountered is that we may find words which are obviously complex bur which, when we divide chem into stem + affix, turn out t o have a stem that it is dil:ficult to imagine is an English word. For example, the word `audacity' seems to be a complex word - but what is its stem? Another problem is that it is difficult in some cases to know whether a word has one, or more than one, suffix (e.g. should we analyse `persona1ity', from the point of view of stress assignment, as

)We will nor spend more time here on looking at the proterns, but go on to look at some generalisations about suffixes and stress. The suffixes are referred to in their spelling form.

Suffixes carrying primary stress themselves
In the case of the others, foreign learners would probably be better advised
to learn the stem + affix combination a s an individual item .
One of the problem s that will be encountered is that we may find
words which are obviously complex bur which, when we divide chem
into stem + affix, turn out t o have a stem that it is difficult to imagine is
an English word. For example, the word `audacity' seems to be a
complex word - but what is its stem? Another problem is that it is
difficult in some cases to know whether a word has one, or more than
one, suffix (e.g. should we analyse `personality`, from the point of view
of stress assignment, as ). We will
nor spend more time here on looking at the problems, but go on to look
at some generalisations about suffixes and stress. The suffixes are
referred to in their spelling form.


Stress in simple words
Stress in simple words
THE SUFFIXES _-ANCE', _-ANT' AND _-ARY'
Suffixes that do not affect stress placement
When these suffixes are attached to single-syllable stems, the stress is
almost always placed on the stem. When the stem has two syllables the
stress is sometimes on the first, sometimes on the second syllable of the
stem. To explain this we need to use a rule based on syJJable-structure,
as was done for simple words in the previous chapter. If the final
syllable of the stem contains a long vowel or diphthong, or if it ends
with more than one consonant, that syllable receives the stress. For


Suffixes carrying primary stress themselves
In the examples given, which seem to be the most common, the primary
stress is on the first syllable of the suffix. If the stem consists of more
than one syllable there will be a secondary stress on one of the syllables
of the stem. This cannot fall on the last syllable of the stem, and is, if
necessary, moved to an earlier syllable. For example, in _Japan'
d3a`psen the primary stress is on the last syllable, but when we add the
stress-carrying suffix _-ese' the primary stress is on the suffix and the
secondary stress is placed not on the second syllable but on the first:
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