Types of assimilation in Linguistics with its effects


Assimilation , log in linguistics, the similarity of one sound (phoneme) to another voice (phoneme) in the course of speech. This event is the result of the matching of the voices of the companions. For example: tanbur – tambourine, present – masculine, statement – declaration, beginning – beginning, etc. Consonant sounds have four characteristics: the work of the vocal cords, the work of the active member (or denominator of the voice), the mode of production and the presence of resonators. are similar. Assimilation is divided into two groups depending on the degree of similarity of sounds: complete and incomplete. Full assimilation is carried out in the case of the concurrence of consonant sounds, and in this case one voice completely resembles another: sadto – satto, worse – worse, and so on. In incomplete assimilation, one voice is partially similar to another voice (in terms of sound, silence, articulation): chanbar – chambar, reservoir – reservoir, better – thinner, heavier – heavier, etc. Depending on the direction of assimilation are divided into two groups: progressive (progressive) and posterior (regressive). The assimilation of the next voice to the previous voice is called the pioneer assimilation (revenge – assassination, affirmation – affirmation), which is a form of similarity toTajik language is not typical. The assimilation of the previous sound to the next (sandwich – dumpling, beginning – beginning, statement – declaration, Sunday – Sunday) is called subsequent assimilation. Lets see what are the types of Assimilation in linguistics

assimilation, absorption, merging, ie the influence of the articulation of one consonant sound on another and its assimilation to oneself.

The assimilation of English consonants is one of the reasons many English learners find it difficult to understand fluent English. some sounds are absorbed. In linguistics, 3 types of assimilation of English sounds are traditionally distinguished.

Types of Assimilation


 This is when the previous sound affects the pronunciation of the next one.


The subsequent sound affects the pronunciation of the previous one.


Both sounds interact with each other.


Depending on the position in the word, some sounds noticeably change their pronunciation. Assimilation is the qualitative assimilation of one sound to another. Assimilation exists to make it easier to pronounce sounds at the junction of words and in the middle of a word.

In English, assimilation is manifested by the movement of the place of formation of the barrier, i.e. the consonants that are pronounced on the alveoli [  s  ] , [  z  ] , [  n  ] , [  t  ] before the sounds [  θ  ] , [  ð  ] move to the gap between the teeth, so that it is more convenient to pronounce the interdental following the alveolar [  θ  ] , [  ð  ] . 

For example : 

In the text [  in ðə tekst  ] – In the text
On the plate [  ɔn ðə pleit  ] – On the plate
At the desk [  ət ðə desk  ] – At the desk
Is this a pencil? [  iz ðis ə pensl  ] – Is that a pencil?

Further Types of Assimilation 

1-Consonant and vocal assimilation. 

Consonant assimilation – assimilation of a consonant consonant, for example. In the word legs the ending -s is voiced by the sonorous sound [g], in the word “boat” the voiced consonant “d” is replaced by the voiceless “t” – (“tray”).

Vocal assimilation – assimilation of a vowel to a vowel, for example, instead of “happens” in common parlance, it is often said “byvat”.

2-Progressive, regressive, and mutual assimilation.

1-Progressive assimilation 

With progressive assimilation, the subsequent sound is influenced by the previous one: in the words desks, pegs, under the influence of the sounds [k], [g], the plural ending – s becomes voiceless in desks and voiced in pegs.

2-Regressive assimilation 

A sound process, in which the second of two adjacent sounds likens the first or the previous one: in the phrase at the alveolar [t] becomes dental under the influence of the interdental.

3-Mutual assimilation

in the word, twice [t] is rounded under the influence of [w], and [w], in turn, is partially stunned under the influence of the voiceless [t].

3-Mandatory and optional assimilation.

Compulsory assimilation is characteristic of the speech of all people who speak a certain language. Moreover, the style of speech does not matter. This assimilation is included in the articulatory base and, accordingly, should be mandatory in the study of the spoken language and observed in pronunciation.

Unnecessary assimilation appears in casual spoken language. It must be avoided.

4-Distance and contact assimilation. 

In distant assimilation, one sound affects the other at a distance, although they are separated from each other by other sounds.

Rus. bully – hooligan (vernacular), eng. foot “leg” – feet “legs”, goose “goose” – geese “geese”. In Old English. lang. fori (plural of fot “leg”), “i” changed the vowel of the root, and then dropped. It’s the same in him. lang .: Fuss “leg” – Fusse “legs”, Gans “goose” – Gдnse “geese”.

In contact assimilation, the interacting sounds are in direct contact.

Effects of Assimilation 

Assimilation can affect:

1) the place of articulation, 2) the work of the vocal cords, 3) the way of articulation

For the English language, assimilation at the place of articulation is most typical, and the consonants that are subject to a change in the place of articulation are alveolar [t], [d], [n] and nasal.

When the final alveolar consonants [t], [d], [s], [z], [n] interact with any initial non-alveolar consonant at the junction of two words, the alveolar articulation can be replaced with any other. This is confirmed by many different examples:

  1. [t] can go to [p], a [d] – to [b] before [p], [b], [m]: that man, that pen, that boy, good pen, good boy, good man, light blue;
  2. [t] can go to [k], and [d] – to [g] before [k], [g]: that cup, that girl, good concert, good girl;
  3. [n] can go to [m] before [p], [b], [m]: ten players, ten boys, ten men;
  4. [n] can go before [k], [g]: ten cups, ten girls;
  5. [s] goes to, a [z] goes to before [j]: this shop, cross channel, this judge, this year, those young men, cheese shop, those churches, has she.

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