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Consonants‏‎ in English

Vowels and Consonants are the sounds which go to make up the English language.

  • If air passes straight through the mouth without being stopped or constricted this forms a vowel, written a, e, i, o, u
  • If the air is stopped at any point or the mouth then this creates a consonant, written b, c, d, f, g, h, j, k, l, m, n, p, q, r, s, t, v, w, x, y, z

For more, see Vowels and Consonants‏‎ in English.

Cartoon of a person's mouth producing sound.The word consonant comes from the Latin word consonare meaning sound together. The English language contains 21 consonants (along with 5 vowels‏‎).

The 21 consonants are: b, c, d, f, g, h, j, k, l, m, n, p, q, r, s, t, v, w, x, y, z

In English, no words can be formed with consonants only. Commonly cited as exceptions are words like sky and fly; although listed within the consonants, the letter y is considered a semi-consonant by some, a semi-vowel by others. This is because it can stand for a consonant as in “yoke” but also for a vowel as in “myth”.

What is a Consonant?

In terms of sound production‏‎, a consonant is a sound which includes some kind of blocking. For example, if you make the sound /m/ as in /mike/ the lips are closed. Compare this with a vowel where the air flows freely through the mouth without interruption.

See Also

Vowels and Consonants‏‎ – a full look at consonants and vowels in English.

Image © yugenro

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