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  2.28.3 Summary: The closed o and the open o / voiced and voiceless s / v / w / x / y


Summary: The closed o and the open o / voiced and voiceless s / v / w / x / y

The letter o represents two different sounds, an open o similar in what we found in the English word hog and a closed one, similar to the o in the English word toe.

Examples
  closed magro = thin
  open cosa = thing

The 's' exists in two versions as well: in a voiced and a voiceless version

The s exists in two versions as well: in a voiced and a voiceless version. We already explained the difference between voiceless and voiced (see 2.18).

Examples
  voiceless sempre = always
  voiced smettere = to stop

This 'v' is perhaps a surprise for people speaking Spanish

The v in Italian is very easy, it corresponds to the v in English, in words like value. If you know Spanish you are perhaps induced to believe that the v is a sound similar to b in words like bring. But that's not the case.

The letter w is luxury

As there is already a letter for the English w, the w is not really needed and shows up only in words borrowed from other languages.

The 'x' is luxury as well

The x is pronounced as /ks/ and exists only in words borrowed from other languages more recently (the x in original latin words like exprimere has became s, exprimere => esprimere / to squeeze out some thing).

The 'y' is extrem luxury

There are only eight words in Italian starting with y. It is pronounced like the English y in yogurt.





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