Stress Patterns In Prefixes And Suffixes


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Stress Patterns In Prefixes And Suffixes

  1. 1. Stress Patterns in Prefixes and Suffixes Introduction: Stress is an important feature of English pronunciation and to become a powerful communicator of English one needs proficiency while using different stress patterns in his communication. Modern man is fully aware of the importance of English in everyday affairs of modern world. Men and women both are aware of the extensive use of this language in the field of trade and commerce, travel and tourasim, banking, administration, aviation, law and above all education. And now with the advent of globalization and a revolution in information technology, the importance of this language is further increased. Stress is crucial in English pronunciation. It can be called a grammatical device in English. In English a part of the meanings of a word depends on its stress. It serves to mark the function of words in spoken English. Most of our students learn English grammar from books. That is why their sense of stress remain undeveloped. One thing should necessarily kept in mind that English word are pronounced with one dominant syllable while the other syllables tend to get squashed and reduced. So to say to become a powerful communicator of English one must be proficient in using stress. What is stress? Stress is the degree of force with which a syllable or a word is uttered. It can more easily be defined as degree of prominence a syllable has. When we put a greater breath force on a syllable it becomes a stressed syllable. Stress is also called the word accent of a sentence. If a syllable has more than one syllable then one of the syllables stands out from the rest and this causes stress. Examples: In a word table the first syllable is /tei/. It is more prominent than the second /bl/. Similarly in the word committee /k'miti/ the second syllable /mi/ is more prominent. Taking example of recommend, the third syllable /mend/ is more prominent than others and it is said to receive the accent.
  2. 2. Nature of Stress: The nature of stress is simple enough. Everyone can easily understand that first syllable of these words like father, open, camera is stressed. Then the middle syllable in potato, apartment, and relation is stressed. Again we notice that final syllable in about, receive, and perhaps are stressed. Production and Perception of Stress Syllables: We can study stress from the point of view of production and of perception. Both are closely related but not identical. Production of stress is generally believe to depend on the speaker using more muscular energy than is used for unstressed syllables. Measurement of muscular effort is difficult but it seems possible according to experimental study while producing stressed syllables muscles that are used to expel air from the lungs are more active. Many experiments have been carried out on the perception of stress. From perceptual point of view all stressed syllable have one characteristic in common and that is prominence. Stressed syllables are recognized as stressed because they are more prominent than unstressed syllables. Types of Stress: There are two types of stress. 1) Word stress. 2) Sentence stress. Word Stress: Word stress shows what syllable or syllables in a word are stressed. e.g, useful is stressed on the first syllable, mistake is stressed on the second syllable, advantageous has a primary stress on the third syllable and a secondary stress on the first syllable. Rules of Word Stress: Stress on words in English is not tied to any particular syllable for the entire vocabulary. Stress pattern of the each word in English has to be learnt individually. There are certain groups of words which follow some regular stress patterns. These patterns allow so few exceptions that they may be regarded as
  3. 3. rules of word stress. These rules are based on the kinds of prefixes and suffixes or word endings. Rules Related to Suffixes: There are two types of suffixes.  Inflexional Suffixes  Derivational Suffixes 1) Inflexional Suffixes: These are those suffixes when attached towards do not change their parts of speech or grammatical status. Another feature of these suffixes is that once they have been attached to a word, no other suffix can be added. Such suffixes do not affect the stress of words. Examples: 'Picture 'pictures 'enter 'entering 'Table 'tables 'play 'played 'Simple 'simpler 'heavy 'heavier 2) Derivational Suffixes: Derivational suffixes are those which we use to derive new words. They may or may not change the part of speech of the word to which they are attached. Some derivational suffixes do not affect the stress while others do. a) The following derivational suffixes do not affect the stress. Examples: 'Persona 'personage 'Hermit 'hermitage 'Differ 'difference 'Utter 'utterance b) The derivational suffixes that bring change in stress are given below. Examples: Millio 'nair engi 'neer addres 'see Cava 'lier ru 'pee tru 'stee Sentence Stress:
  4. 4. Sentence stress indicates what words in a sentence are stressed. Look at the following example: Examples of sentence stress 1) It’s a `door. 2)`Take a `book out of the `bag. 3) The `dog is a `faithful `animal. 4) `Bring me a `pencil. Which Words are Stressed and Which are not: In English speech some words are stressed and others are not. In normal speech all nouns, demonstrative and interrogative pronouns, main verbs, adjectives and adverbs are stressed. The pronouns, prepositions, conjunctions, helping verbs are not stressed. Examles: 1) Her complexion is fair. (Adjective) 2) Who is there? (Interrogative) 3) I went to Multan. (Main Verb) 4) Ahmad is a good boy. (Noun) 5) Marry went there quickly. (Adverb)