"Live" and "leave" Hi ! I was listening to music and i asked myself how to know if it's live or leave that is spoken at speaking. Please, i hope someone could explain me.
Nov 27, 2014 5:56 PM
Answers · 5
How do you know whether the person is saying 'live' or 'leave'? From the context, and the grammatical construction of the sentence. There is never any cause for confusion with regard to meaning. As for the phonology, they are actually totally different sounds, both to the native speaker ear in the native speaker's mouth. 'Live' is a slightly shorter sound, and it's made when the mouth is relaxed. There's no contact between any parts of your mouth when you say 'i'. By contrast, your mouth is much tighter when you say 'ea' or 'ee'. The muscles are more tense, and you can feel the sides of your tongue pressing against the inner sides of your teeth when you say this sound. If you want to practise the sounds yourself, first relax your mouth, so that no parts are touching, and say a short 'i' sound. Then say it again, but this time tighten the muscles of your mouth so that you can feel the pressure on the sides of your tongue, and say the consonant 'y'. The transition from 'i' to 'y' will make you say 'ee'. Once you are able to pronounce the two sounds clearly, this will improve your perceptive skills and help you understand what you are hearing.
November 28, 2014
The two sounds are indeed quite similar, but native speakers never confuse them, so you're very smart to work on distinguishing them. There are many "minimal pairs" that could cause major misunderstandings if you haven't mastered the sounds. Go to the website, click on "monophthongs," then click on "front." Then click on /i/ for the vowel in "leave," and compare to /ɪ/ for the vowel in "live." On the University website, you'll see a video showing you the lips, and a moving diagram showing you a cross-section of the mouth. Basically, the "live" vowel is relaxed, whereas the "leave" vowel is tense, with lips in a smile. Also, the "leave" vowel may begin as the vowel in "live" and quickly glide into the "leave" vowel, like a very short diphthong /ɪi/. Note: in Quebec French, words like "vive" have the same vowel as English "leave," and words like "vif" have the same vowel as English "live." This difference is not phonemic in French, but merely a function of the final consonant sound.
November 27, 2014
'Live' and 'leave' usually sound very different, but I can easily imagine that 'live' could sound a lot more like 'leave' when sung. If you have a link to the song, we could tell you if it's pronounced normally.
November 27, 2014
If you are listening to music that is being played right now OR was recorded from a performance at a concert, the word is "live" "Leave" is an entirely different word that doesn't fit here at all.
November 27, 2014
There are two ways to say live that both have different meanings. 1. Live (Lie-ve) You hear this watching TV a lot. For example: We are LIVE in New York City. What this means is that they are here IN THE MOMENT as they are in New York City. There is no past tense when you use this form. You can only say, WE WERE live. 2. Live (Leh-ve) This means that you exist. I live in New York (I exist in new york). Or you can say I lived in New York City(Add d to make it past tense) this translates to (I existed in New York City at one point) 3. Leave (lee-ve) has nothing to do with the first two meanings. It is a verb. To go away. For example: I will leave New York City (I will go away from New York City)
November 27, 2014
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Language Skills
English, French, Italian
Learning Language
English, Italian