Vowels 17 and 20, /aʊ/ versus /ʊə/    12 pairs      [bowboor.html]

The /aʊ/ diphthong is spelled <ou> or <ow>. The /ʊə/ diphthong is spelled <ure> or <oor>.

This is a contrast between two diphthongs with different starting positions and direction of movement. It is not a problem for learners.

The density figure is 1.14%. The set makes 6 semantic contrasts giving a loading of 55%.

aloud allured
allow allure
  allowed allured
  allows allures
bough boor
  boughs boors
bow boor
  bows boors 
loud lured
mow moor
  mows moors 
spouse spoors

John Higgins, Shaftesbury, December 2009
updated Chiang Mai, 2024