The Duration of [s] in English Words The duration of the phonetic segment [s] has been measured from recordings made by three talkers of English words embedded in the frame sentence “Say ________instead.” Results indicate that the duration of [s] depends on whether the following vowel nucleus is stressed or not, but the duration is independent of ... Research Article
Research Article  |   March 01, 1974
The Duration of [s] in English Words
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Dennis Klatt
    Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Massachusetts
Article Information
Research Articles
Research Article   |   March 01, 1974
The Duration of [s] in English Words
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, March 1974, Vol. 17, 51-63. doi:10.1044/jshr.1701.51
History: Received October 18, 1973 , Accepted November 1, 1973
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, March 1974, Vol. 17, 51-63. doi:10.1044/jshr.1701.51
History: Received October 18, 1973; Accepted November 1, 1973

The duration of the phonetic segment [s] has been measured from recordings made by three talkers of English words embedded in the frame sentence “Say ________instead.” Results indicate that the duration of [s] depends on whether the following vowel nucleus is stressed or not, but the duration is independent of the degree of stress on the vowel. An [s] is longer in prestressed position and shorter before unstressed vowels and in word-final position. The [s] duration does not appear to depend on the position of a syllable in the word. An [s] is shorter in multisyllabic words and in consonant cluster sequences. The locations of syllable boundaries and morpheme boundaries do not influence the duration of an intervocalic [s]. The relatively large durational variability of [s] before an unstressed vowel suggests that unstressed syllables are articulated with less precision than are stressed syllables and supports the notion that lexical stress is a feature the domain of which encompasses both consonants and vowels.

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