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  #1 (permalink)  
Unread Jun 5th, 2007, 07:44 am
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Default "Thuh" or "Thee"

I've been asked twice recently if there is any rule governing the pronunciation of "the". The best answer I can think of is that there is no set rule. "Thuh" is the more common pronunciation. "Thee" is used for special emphasis as in "the only..." or "the original..."; but not always.

Any ideas, people?
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Unread Jun 6th, 2007, 11:33 am
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Default Re: "Thuh" or "Thee"

I think we read it "Thee" if the following word starts with a vowel,eg we say "thuh" sea, but "thee" ocean.
Of course we also use "thee" for emphasis.
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Unread Jun 6th, 2007, 01:04 pm
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Default Re: "Thuh" or "Thee"

Yes, I'd go along with Manuela. Thee before a vowel sound (note the difference: thuh university - thee umbrella)
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Unread Jun 7th, 2007, 02:34 am
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Default Re: "Thuh" or "Thee"

I agree, but I don't personally follow that rule. I'm not sure if it's a regional thing (I grew up near Boston) but I say THUH almost exclusively.
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Unread Jul 30th, 2007, 03:24 pm
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Default Re: "Thuh" or "Thee"

I always say thuh previous to a consonant and thee before a vowel.
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Unread Oct 24th, 2007, 10:20 pm
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Default Re: "Thuh" or "Thee"

The is just pronounced thuh not thee. Thee is a whole different word. It does not matter if the next word after "the" is a vowel or a consonant, you still say Thuh. Nowadays in English we rarely use the word thee, it normally represents a person. It was used a lot in the Shakespeare novels. You could say: Did he give thee the book? but we do not speak like this anymore.

Last edited by momofnicholas : Oct 24th, 2007 at 10:22 pm. Reason: grammer
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Unread Oct 26th, 2007, 08:45 am
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Default Re: "Thuh" or "Thee"

Canadians definitely say thuh before a consonant and thee before a vowel - however I do notice on television and in films that many Americans seem to use thuh exclusively. So I would say that you need to tell students to pay attention to the usage in the region where you live.(because, here, a person who uses only thuh, sounds uneducated)
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Unread Oct 26th, 2007, 09:19 am
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Default Re: "Thuh" or "Thee"

I am a canadian and I do no say thee before a vowel. Sometimes I might say thee end but it is slang and it is not right. Here is a link that talks about it.

AUE: Thou, Thee, and Archaic Grammar
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Unread Oct 26th, 2007, 02:03 pm
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Default Re: "Thuh" or "Thee"

Hi, fellow Canadian! I think you have misunderstood the "thee" and "thuh" to which the original question referred. It does not refer to the archaic pronoun - thee (which would be quite hilarious in contemporary English). The comments refer to the pronunciation of the article - the. The original poster has used the spelling of thuh and thee to indicate the sounds of the word without using phonetic symbols. (And if you only use the thuh pronunciation for the - you are probably from a different region of Canada - and as I said before, I would direct students to note the usage that is most appropriate to where they are speaking English.
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Unread Jun 11th, 2008, 03:12 pm
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Default Re: "Thuh" or "Thee"

The rule says that when "the" is before a word with a consonant sound it is "thuh" and before a word with a vowel sound it is "thee"
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