This is the e sound. As in the words:
- get /get/
- when /wen/
- then /ðen/
It is a Vowel sound and it’s technical name is the ‘Close-Mid Front Unrounded Vowel’.
How to Pronounce the e Sound
Remember that the key to pronunciation s physical and the name tells us about how the sound is made physically. In this case your tongue is high, but not at the top of your mouth, and at the front. Unrounded refers to your lips because they are stretched out as if you are smiling and not rounded.
All vowels are made through the mouth and are voiced so you vibrate your vocal chords to make the sound.
To produce the sound put your tongue high, but not at the top, and at the front of your mouth and stretch out your lips, then make a short voiced sound with your mouth slightly open.
How the e Sound is Spelled
The e sound is normally spelled with the letter ‘e’ as in the words:
- well /wel/
- tell /tel/
But it can also be spelled with the letter ‘a’ as in the words:
- many /’meni/
- again /ə’gen/
Like with all vowels in English, the spelling can be very inconsistent and you will always find alternative and unusual spellings of the vowels sounds. It is one of the most difficult things in English but you just have to learn it.
Examples of the e Sound
Here are some words that start with the e sound:
- every /’evri/
- any /’eni/
- ever /ˈevə/
- end /end/
Here are some words that have the sound in the middle:
- let /let/
- never /‘nevə/
- very /’veri/
- help /help/
Words don’t often end with this sound.
So that is it for the e sound but we have made additional videos on each of the groups of sounds Vowels, Diphthongs, Single Consonants, or Consonant Pairs as well as a video explaining the over all phonetic chart.