A way to remember how to distinguish between these three confusing words.
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Accent's Way Magazine

#27

How to pronounce though, thought, tough

English is definitely one of those languages where what you see is NOT what you get.
Look at the words though, thought and tough.
All have the ‘ough’ spelling, but the words don’t rhyme.
Why? You guessed it! Because each word is pronounced differently.
If you ever felt confused by these words, today’s video is definitely going to help.

TRANSCRIPT

Hi there! It’s Hadar and this is the Accent’s Way – your way to finding clarity, confidence, and freedom in English.

Eduardo asked me to explain the difference between the words: though, thought, and tough. Now, they all look the same with those O’s, U-G-H’s, but they sound differently.

So let’s explain the difference between the three. The word ‘though’ begins with a strong ‘th’ sound – “th” and then the “O-U-G-H” stands for the ‘oh’ as and ‘go’. So basically, it’s only two sounds “th-ow”, “thow” “thow”.

The word ‘thought’, although you only add a T at the end but the vowel is different. In this case, the “O-U-G-H” stands for the ‘ah’ as in ‘father’ vowel. The ‘th’ is a soft ‘th’, so the tongue comes out and only air is passing – “th” – then you open it to an ‘ah’ sound – thaa” – and you end it with a very subtle T: “thaat” “thaat”. “Though”. “Thought”.

The third word is ‘tough’. So in this case we begin with a strong T sound it’s not a “th” – “T” “T” “T” – and the “O-U-G-H” stands for “uh” “uh”. And then it ends with an F sound. So the “G-H” actually represents the F – “tuhf” “tuhf” “tuhf”. “Though.” “Thought.” “Tough.” Alright? Good!

Very simple, when you think about it. Right? Go ahead and practice it and don’t forget to subscribe if you haven’t yet.
Also, if you like this video, please share it with your friends and I will see you next week in the next video. Bye!



Next week, we’ll complete this lesson by comparing the words: ‘through’ and ‘thorough’.

Got any more interesting pairs?
Write them down in the comments below!

Have a great week,

xoxo
Hadar

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7 Responses

  1. Hello, Hadar. You cannot imagine how much you are helping me with your videos. This is only to say you: Thank you!!!!

  2. Dear Hadar

    Many thanks for the videos you sent to me, they’ve helped me to understand and practice the pronunciation definitely.
    By the way could you please help me to pronounce the words with ch and tch?

    Best regards
    Rozanna

  3. I asked you a question about pronunciation how to pronounce inability when would you publish that video

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