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Figure 12 shows all 12 of the simple vowel sounds used in General American (GA) and Standard Southern British English (SSBE) in relation to the height of the tongue and the position of the tongue elevation in the mouth. We have omitted the rhotacized central vowels /ə˞/ and /ɜ˞/ and have shown the two vowels that are exclusive to SSBE in red.

American and British monophthongs

Figure 12. Chart of American and British simple vowels.

Table 1 lists General American and Standard Southern British English monophthongs categorized by length of vocalization. Rhotacized vowels are omitted and vowels used exclusively in British English are shown in red.

SHORT VOWELS

LONG VOWELS

IPA

example words

IPA

example words

ɪ

ship, myth, dim

i

brief, sea, meal

ɛ

bed, said, shelf

ɑ

spa, ma, calm

æ

cat, pan, ham

ɔ

ought, all, hawk

ʌ

cut, bung, hum

u

two, flu, goose

ʊ

put, should, wood

ɜ

burn, worm, turn

ə

astray, agree, tomato

ɒ

pot, hot, watch

Table 1. American and British monophthongs.

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