Recently I have been trying to learn to pronounce the voiced th properly.Is it a correct way of pronouncing it by saying "d" with my tongue between my teeth?I know that this is not the canonical way,but to me it seems that this is a much easier way to do it and it is close to the way the natives pronounce it.

2 Answers 2


If you can say the unvoiced th, then you already know what to do with your mouth to say the voiced th. Of course, just make the unvoiced th voiced; remember to let your vocal chords hum while saying it. Voicing is the only significant difference in the two. Here's more about voiced and unvoiced sounds.

Try this: say the "uh" sound continuously (the schwa). As you're saying it, very slowly move your tongue forward. As your tongue gets very close to your teeth, you'll hear the sound change. And you might feel your tongue vibrating slightly. That's the voiced th. Practice it by saying words like other, mother, and brother, then practice words like the, then, that, and there.

Some Americans do pronounce the th as a D, but that is definitely not standard, and I don't recommend saying it that way.


Not quite. It is indeed interdental (tongue between the teeth), but for most English speakers it is quite distinct from even an interdental /d/, because it is a fricative, not a stop.

In stops, like /d/ and /p/, there is a moment when the tongue or lips actually block the airflow, and there is a complete break in the sound. In fricatives like /s/ and /v/, there is never this complete break - the tongue or lips never quite meet, but the sound is formed by their coming close together.

  • Thank you for your answer ! I kind of thought that my way of saying it is not quite right,but what bugs me is that,for instance,when I watch American films they don't seem to pronounce it like a fricative and their pronunciation is extremely close to a /d/(dis,dat etc).Is this just because fast speech or is the voiced th sound reduced and that's why it sounds like this?
    – user69503
    Commented Feb 9, 2018 at 11:44
  • It is a stereotype of certain accents (for example some Irish, some New York) that /ð/ gets pronounced as a stop - like /d/ or a more dental version of it. Other accents (eg Cockney) pronounce it as /v/.
    – Colin Fine
    Commented Feb 9, 2018 at 11:52
  • Don't know if it helps, but if you hold the proper fricative sound for a bit, it makes your lips tingle. When you say it really fast, it can sound very close to a /d/, but in most dialects, it isn't quite the same. There is a lot of play with the similarity, and I'd say it's also a stereotype of black American dialects to substitute a /d/ sound. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Who_Dat%3F Commented Feb 10, 2018 at 23:12

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