Google, when searching for executable define or executor define shows that second syllable is stressed, i.e. exEcutable, exEcutor.

Speech on http://www.thefreedictionary.com/executable suggests that exEcutable is British and execUtable is American.

Single variant on https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/executable is exEcutable.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HivZxn5bwa8 -- execUtable.

http://dictionary.cambridge.org/pronunciation/english/executable -- Executable as British and execUtable as American.

All my colleagues -- execUtable.

Is it dependent on whether it's British or American?

Can it be generalised to more common rule?

  • 1
    For the sake of comprehensiveness: adjective/noun "executable": Webster (the dot after the d doesn't denote stress, I think; AmE): /ˈeksəˌkyüd.əbəl, -ütə-, ˌ ̷ ̷ ̷ ̷ˈ ̷ ̷ ̷ ̷ ̷ ̷/; OED: /ɛkˈsɛkjʊtəb(ə)l/; (formerly known as) New Oxford Dictionary of English (BrE): /ɪɡˈzɛkjʊtəb(ə)l, ɛɡˈzɛkjʊtəb(ə)l/ MacMillan (AmE): /ˈeksəˌkjutəbl/; The New Oxford American Dictionary (AmE): /ˈeksəˌkyo͞odəb(ə)l/ Longman (specifically noun, should that make a difference; AmE, then BrE): /ˈeksəkjuːtəbəl, ˈeksɪkjuːtəbəl/ . ˈ and ˌ denote primary and secondary stress, respectively.
    – user3395
    Commented Nov 25, 2016 at 12:49
  • 1
    In AmE, executable is either of the two you posted. It's possible that it is exEcutable when talking about the noun (a program's executable), and exeCUtable when talking about the adjective (an executable function), but it might also just be personal preference.
    – Andrew
    Commented Dec 9, 2016 at 0:55
  • For what it's worth, I'm American and I've never heard executable pronounced with stress on the second syllable, only on the third.
    – user230
    Commented May 23, 2017 at 17:59
  • But what would be the correct way to pronounce "executed". On which syllable is the stress? Commented Jan 14, 2019 at 22:45

1 Answer 1


Executive is pronounced exECutive. This is a noun that typically means a high-ranking person in a company, or something that facilitates execution. You can't pronounce this exeCUTive.

Execute and related forms are pronounced exeCUTE, e.g. execUTEd, exeCUTing, exeCUTion and cannot be pronouned with the stress elsewhere.

Executable is derived from execute, not executive. The -able form of executive would be executivible which isn't a word.

So logically it should be pronounced exeCUTEable but pronouncing it the other way isn't really wrong, just logically inconsistent.


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