Consonants /t/ versus /ʒ/, 9 pairs     [lootluge.html]

The spelling of /t/ is <t> or <tt> in this set. The /ʒ/ sound is spelled <ge>, <zu> or <su>.

The contrast is between a voiceless stop and a voiced fricative, fairly close in the mouth. It is unlikely to be a problem.

The consonant /t/ can occur in any position in the syllable, but /ʒ/ only occurs finally or intervocalically, other than in foreign names or loan words such as gendarme. /ʒ/ is in any case a very rare phoneme, found in only 334 words in the source dictionary.

The figure for the mean density of this contrast is 0.1%. The set makes 7 semantic contrasts, a loading of 77%.

attar azure
bait beige
bruit Bruges 
brute Bruges
letter leisure 
  lettered leisured 
loot luge
root rouge
  rooting rouging

John Higgins, Shaftesbury, January 2010.