Pronunciation of plosives (P, T, K)

East Cree has three plosive (or ‘stop’) sounds. (The flow of air through the mouth is abruptly stopped during the production of these sounds. The air explodes out of the mouth when released.)

The letters for the East Cree stops are P, T, and K. For the most part, they sound like this:

At the end of a word, East Cree P, T, and K often sound like the [ pʰ ] in English pill, the [ tʰ ] in English till and the [ kʰ ] in English kill.

Northern Syllables IPA
ᒦᐱᑎᓲᑉ Click here to hear this word miipitisuup mii – piti – suup [ mi – ˈpɪtʰ – su]
ᒑᑭᑦ Click here to hear this word chaakit chaa – kit [ ˈtʃa – kɪ ]
ᑰᒃ Click here to hear this word kuuk kuuk [ ˈkuː ]
Southern Syllables IPA
ᐙᐸᔑᑉ Click here to hear this word waapaship waapa – ship [ ˈwap – ʃɪ ]
ᐆᐎᑦ Click here to hear this word uuwit uuwit [ ˈuː ]
ᓂᔅᒃ Click here to hear this word nisk nisk [ ˈnɪs ]

Sometimes you can hear two stops in a row in East Cree. In such cases, the first P, T, and K also sound like the [ pʰ ] in English pill, the [ tʰ ] in English till and the [ kʰ ] in English kill.

Northern Syllables IPA
ᐋᐱᐦᑐᐎᓐ Click here to hear this word aapihtuwin aapih – tuwin [ a – ˈtuʷən ]
ᐊᑎᐦᒄ Click here to hear this word atihkw atihkw [ ɪːkʷ ]
Southern Syllables IPA
ᐊᑎᐦᒄ Click here to hear this word atihkw atihkw [ ˈʌkʰ ]
ᐊᑯᐦᑉ Click here to hear this word akuhp akuhp [ ˈapʰ] or [ ˈapʰ ]

Anywhere else in the word, especially between vowels, P can sound like the B in English bed, or like the P in spill. T can sound like the D in English den, or like the T in still. Finally K can sound like the G in English good, or like K in skill. See the page on plosive voicing for many examples.

One major difference between East Cree and English, illustrated in the above examples, is that East Cree uses fewer letters to write stop sounds than does English. For a quick guide to East Cree spelling, see the page on how to write East Cree sounds in the roman orthography. For a more in-depth discussion of how to hear and pronounce P, T, and K in East Cree, see the linguistic description of plosives and the page on plosive voicing.

Click here to go back to Consonants/ Back to Consonants Click here to go to the top/ Top Click here to go to Affricates/ Next: Affricates