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Difference Between Vowels and Consonants

Vowels vs Consonants

Vowels and Consonants are two types of alphabets that show considerable difference between them when it comes to the purpose of usage.

Vowel are five in number and they are a,e,i,o and u. On the other hand consonants are twenty one in number. The entire alphabet other than the five vowels constitutes the consonants.

It is important to note that consonants have to combine with vowels to form genuine words. In other words it can be said that consonants on their own accord cannot combine to form meaningful words. They have to take the help of the vowels to form meaningful words.

The vowels are otherwise called as ‘sonants’ and the word ‘consonants’ means ‘that which take the help of the sonants or the vowels’.

It is rare to find two ‘a’s, ‘i’s and ‘u’s together in a word although you can find words where two other similar vowels can appear such as ‘good’ and feel. This is due to the fact that ‘a’, ‘i’ and ‘u’ are called simple vowels.

Consonants are of five types. They are called gutturals that arise from the throat such as ‘k’ and ‘g’, palatals that arise from the hard palate such as ‘j’ and‘s’, cerebrals that arise from the roof of the palate such as‘d’ in ‘door’ and‘t’ in ‘total’, dentals that arise from the teeth such as‘t’ in ‘through’ and the labials that arise from the lips such as p in ‘plate’ and ‘m’ in ‘mall’.

It is interesting to note that consonants are produced even through the nose. Such of those consonants that are produced from the nose are called nasals such as ‘n’ in ‘novel’. One of the important rules of pronunciation with regard to vowels is that the initial ‘a’ in a word gets elongated as in the word ‘bark’ and the initial ‘u’ in a word gets shortened as in the word ‘bull’.


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