The Letter T

I'm sure you've come across this letter. Let's learn about all the sounds of the letter T. It is the twentieth letter of the English alphabet.

"The Letter T" in the English Alphabet

T is the twentieth letter in the modern English alphabet. It is a consonant.

Consonants are the letters that are produced by stopping the letter from flowing easily.

Uppercase Form T
Lowercase t
Name tee (pronounced /ˈtiː/)
Main Sound /t/

The Letter T: Sounds

The letter T has four sounds:

Main Sound

Sound 1: /t/

't' mainly sounds /t/:

time /taɪm/

tart /tɑːrt/

tea /tiː/

tie /taɪ/

Other Sounds

Sound 2: /tʃ/

't' also sounds /tʃ/ if it precedes the letter 'u':

statue /ˈstætʃuː/

creature /ˈkriːtʃə(r)/

furniture /ˈfɜːrnɪtʃər/

Sound 3: /ʃ/

't' in 'ti' before the vowels like 'o' or 'a' is pronounced /ʃ/:

nation /ˈneɪʃn/

negotiation /nɪˌɡəʊʃiˈeɪʃn/

ratio /ˈreɪʃiəʊ/

Sound 4: /∅/

't' also sound silent /∅/ if the letter 's' precedes it:

rustle /ˈrʌsl/

castle /ˈkæsl/

whistle /ˈwɪsl/

Christmas /ˈkrɪsməs/

'tch' sounds /tʃ/; in other words, 't' in 'tch' is silent/∅/:

watch /wɑːtʃ/

butcher /ˈbʊtʃər/

pitch /pɪtʃ/

Tip

'et' at the end of French loanwords sounds /eɪ/, so 't' is silent:

beret /bəˈreɪ/

ballet /bæˈleɪ/

bidet /bɪˈdeɪ/

The Letter T: Multigraphs

Letter T can also appear in combinations with other letters (mainly consonants):

tt

'tt' sounds /t/:

butter /ˈbʌtər/

kettle /ˈketl/

rattle /ˈrætl/

th

'th' mainly sounds /θ/:

mouth /maʊθ/

teeth /tiːθ/

thorn /θɔːrn/

thumb /θʌm/

'th' can also sound /ð/ if it is followed by the letter 'e' or 'i':

smoothie /ˈsmuːði/

then /ðen/

brother /ˈbrʌðər/

'th' also sounds /t/:

thyme /taɪm/

Thomas /ˈtɑːməs/

Thames /ˈtemz/

pt

'pt' sounds /t/, in other words, 'p' is silent /∅/:

receipt /rɪˈsiːt/

pterodactyl /ˌterəˈdæktɪl/

The Letter T: Uses

T can be used as an abbreviation for
tonne(s)
tesla
temperature

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