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E pronunciation in Russian

 

Could someone please explain to me the pronunciation of the letter e in Russian? Sometimes it sounds like ye and other times it sounds different.

For learning: Russian
Base language: English
Category: Other

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    If it's the first letter of a word or after the soft sign it is \йе\. (Если)
    Otherwise and when it's stressed it drops the \й\ (\j\) and sounds like \е\ (close to the English \ɛ\ as in 'bed').
    When it is unstressed it is reduced to \i\ as in 'tip'.
    Тепéрь [тiпɛр']
    In loan words it is sometimes pronounced as \э\ (тЕннис, генЕтика, темп
    \тэнис, гiнэтiка, тэмп\)

    There are three basic sounds analogous to the English letter 'e':

    Ее - a "ye" sound almost like the English 'yeah' but a lot shorter.

    Ёё - "yo" with a flat 'o', like the O in British English "yoghurt" or the word "yonder". (in written Russian, the dots are often left off as natives know where the 'yo' sound - which is intrinsically a stressed 'Ee' - is.)

    Ээ - an "eh" sound as in 'exit'.

    stressed -- [ɛ] (after hard consonant, as in 'pen'), [e] (after soft consonant, as in 'play')
    unstressed -- /i/ (after soft consonant, as in 'did') or /ы/ (after hard consonant; I don't know an equivalent in English, sometimes plural -es is pronounced this way)

    yes, it's 1) "ye" as in "yellow" and soft "e" as in "best"
    1) есть, еда, ещё
    2) смесь, спесь, прелесть

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