Sentence Stress

Viewing 4 posts - 1 through 4 (of 4 total)
Reply to this topic
  • algyptalian
    Participant
    13 January, 2013 at 17:12
    • Total posts: 2

    I’m trying to identify sentence stresses, and im not sure how you would go about it. I seem to identify them, but it seems to me that the stresses would be different depending on how you say the sentence.

    For example, with the following sentences:

    1) Would you mind closing the window?

    What would you say the stresses are? I think its "would", "closing", and "window".

    2) His name’s on the tip of my tongue

    what would the stresses be here? I would say "name’s", "tip", and "tongue".

    3) She’s a generous person

    What are the stresses here? I would say "generous", and "person".

    Have i correctly identified the stresses in each of the sentences? And if not, what are the stresses and why?

    I would appreciate the help.

    JulieJohnson
    Participant
    17 January, 2013 at 11:27
    • Total posts: 9

    Reply To: Sentence Stresses

    Hi Algyptalian,

    You’d be correct in your judging those stressed words because those are bits that give your sentence the meaning you want to give it. They distinguish your sentences from others with a different meaning.

    A little excercise to give yourself: Can you change and identify the emotions of the sentences if you put the stresses on any of the other words? Keep the wording exactly the same though :)

    NB. There are lots of combinations just as there are lots of human emotions!

    Hope this helps,

    Julie Johnson


    ICAL TEFL
    Participant
    17 January, 2013 at 13:34
    • Total posts: 158

    Reply To: Sentence Stresses

    With English almost any word in a sentence can be stressed! This will entirely change the meaning, of course.

    In your first example

    Would you mind closing the window?

    Almost every word can be given the main stress and this will change the meaning in a subtle way.


    ICAL – TEFL Courses & TEFL Resources

    dan
    Moderator
    18 January, 2013 at 9:47
    • Total posts: 770

    Reply To: Sentence Stresses

    You’d be correct in your judging those stressed words because those are bits that give your sentence the meaning you want to give it.

    Yep, absolutely. We normally stress the words which are key to conveying the meaning of the sentence. If I came up to you and said:

    "name’s tip tongue" you’d be able to make a reasonable guess as to what I’m talking about.

    But if I came up to you and said:

    "his on the of my" (the other words in the sentence) you’d be hard-pressed to know what it was I wanted to say.

    And as Julie and ICAL correctly point out, you could stress almost any word and change the meaning of the sentence. What happens, for example, if you stress "my" in the example above?

    "His name’s on the tip of my tongue".

    Dan

Viewing 4 posts - 1 through 4 (of 4 total)

Please log in to reply to this topic.