Word Stress in English Part-1 | What is Word Stress?


 What is Word Stress

Word Stress means pronouncing one syllable of a multisyllabic word with more prominence or greater emphasis than the other syllables in the word. As it is very clear by its name, we give stress on particular syllable in a word that is word stress. One syllable receives more emphasis than the others. If you do not know about syllable, click here to know about Syllable.

For example, there are three syllables in the word “beautiful” /BEAU-ti-ful/ and the word stress falls on the first one /BEAU/. (Please note that in this blog, I’ll demonstrate the stress in a word by capitalizing all the letters that make up the syllable.)
The vowel sound of that syllable will be slightly louder, longer and at a higher pitch.

• TA-ble
• CHAP-ter
• Be-HA-vior
• SEN-tence

In English we don’t say each syllable with the same force or strength.
The syllable which is stressed is strong , big and longer. It receives primary stress and the other ones which are not stressed are weak syllables. There should be a rhythm in English sentences. It shouldn’t sound flat, monotone (all in the same tone) and boring.

I know it sounds like an additional challenge, specially when speaking English is already difficult.
However, when you pronounce every bit of a word and sentence with the same pitch, volume and length, it might make it difficult for native speakers to understand you.         

Read these words carefully and try to give stress on the syllables with capital letters.

• TEA-cher
• CHI-na
• re-CEIVE
• a-BOVE
• Con-ver-SA-tion
• Im-POR-tant

Do not stop here. Just read further about Importance of Word Stress and Rules by clicking here.

Watch this video tutorial below to understand better about word stress.

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