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Hello,

I heard people pronounce the indefinite article "a" in two different ways. One is - what I consider the standard way - pronounced like the first letter of e.g. "accomplishment" (the phonetic symbol for this is an upside-down "e" but I can't type this here) and the other is pronounced like the first letter of the alphabet [ey].
However, the second pronounciation is not always used but only used in some cases. I could not figure out yet which these cases are.

Can you tell me about these two ways of pronouncing "a" and when they are used?

Regards,
Paul
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Comments  (Page 3) 
Awesome...Thank you for that explanation. I've been always wondering if there is any difference between the two different pronunciations of 'a' and why. Now, it's clear for me. My name is Tanya. I live and work in London. I'm not a native speaker but I adore English language. I would like to 'enrol' for this forum but I don't know how. My email is Email Removed
AnonymousI would like to 'enrol' for this forum but I don't know how.
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Students: Are you brave enough to let our tutors analyse your pronunciation?
"I may be a fossil (46 y/o) but to my ear saying "uh" for "a" sounds slang. I believe that's why when you hear the politicians speak they avoid saying "uh".

And to be honest I do not think saying "uh" is correct. The word is "a".

Or another example is the alphabet itself. We don't say "uh" b c d e f g...

Same thing for "the" vs "thuh".

Or should I say "Duh"?" If I follow your reckoning, considering the sound of the vowel "a" to pronounce the indefinite article as "ey" sound, soon it would be not wrong to say "ey-ple" instead of "a-ple" (for the word apple), or "ey-plaiance" instead of "əˈplɑɪ·əns" for the word appliance. So, one subject is the English Alphabet Pronunciation (by the way, why it is not "pronounciation" if we "pronounce" the words?...), another subject is the sound of a vowel meaning a word. An indefinite article is a "word" and not a simple "vowel". Jeff Seben