Does the final "a" drop out in words like "basically", "logically", etc, or should I pronounce it?

  • The a is usually completely elided, though rarely, some American speakers might use a schwa. Oct 5, 2018 at 3:55

2 Answers 2


I've lived in the United States my entire life. In my experience, native speakers always pronounce these words as basicly and logicly. The pronunciation basical-ly sounds distinctly foreign; in fact, in my experience, I think that the pronunciation basical-ly is the most common pronunciation mistake that I ever hear.

In slow and careful speech, I could imagine someone saying logical-ly, but the pronunciation logicly seems more common even then.

The spellings of -al, -ly, and -ally are frustratingly inconsistent. In the following list, each word is presented as adjective - standard spelling of adverb - phonetic spelling of adverb:

  • public - publicly - publicly
  • basic - basically - basicly
  • logical - logically - logicly
  • internal - internally - internally
  • Many people, when speaking in formal or stressful situations, or when they feel the need to be especially clear (or forceful, or persuasive), may adopt pronunciation which errs on the side of sounding out all nominal syllables of a word, even if it's not the accepted pronunciation. I think you'd categorize this as a kind of hypercorrection. But of course, if it happens often enough, then it becomes an accepted pronunciation.
    – CCTO
    Mar 18, 2021 at 13:40

They are all correct, but the pronunciations 'basicly' and 'logicly' are far more common.

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