Y Sounds: Word Lists and Pronunciations
The letter Y is used as an ending, and its most common sound is the Long E. In standard American English, this is a true Long E sound. In British English, a final Y can reduce to a schwa sound. In American English, it does not.
The stressed syllables are in bold print in all of the examples below.
Y as a Long E Sound: diversity, generosity, nonconformity, personality, probability, properly, veracity, victory, vocabulary, voluntary, technology, humanity, security, industry, duty, quarterly, boundary, integrity
The second most common sound for the letter Y is the Long I sound. This occurs in many words as a last letter (though much fewer than those that have the Long E). It is also a middle letter in a few words.
I Sound: nullify, apply, buy, qualify, quantify, rely, reply, try, identify, hype, hybrid, cycle
When Y is the first letter, it has the yuh sound which the tongue is a little tense. There are not too many words with Y as a first letter.
Y as First Letter: yes, yeah, yet, year, yacht, yay
In just a few, rare cases, Y sounds like a short I.
Y as a Short I: cylinder, cyclical
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