The Pronunciation of The /TU/ Combination


Pronunciation - GiveMeSomeEnglish!!!


The Pronunciation of the TU Combination in The Common Tongue of the English Language, when it is located in the middle of the word (or at least not at the beginning of the word.)


Notice!  —  The description below is ONLY for when the Letter U” is Long.  When the Letter U” is “SHORT” — the “T” is ALWAYS pronounced like a normal Letter T”.  But when the Letter U” is long — there are some unique pronunciations.

Also —  These are not “Rules”…  These are descriptions of common usage.  A special “Thank You” to “Imogen” who pointed out that I needed to add this caveat before the description below.  Enjoy!  😉


TU = tʃ (the “CH” sound)


For Example:


Intellectual = Intellek-Chooəl

Adventure = Adven-Ch‘r

Actual = Ak-Chooəl


As you can see — whenever the letter “u” follows the letter “t” in a word, it causes the letter “t” to be pronounced as the “ch” combination.  The letter “u” is still pronounced as a separate letter though and is usually either pronounced “long” (as in the word, “Actual”) or can disappear (as in the word, “Adventure”, and almost every other word with the “-ture” suffix.)


However, as you will see in the video below, this is not the case when the TU combination happens at the beginning of a word, such as:  Tunnel.  But, as you should ALSO be able to see.  The word “Tunnel” has the “Short Letter U”.  A better description would be the word “Tune”.  We don’t say “Choon”.  We say “Toon”.


Notice!  —  There are a lot of people — mostly from England, and mostly in the Techno, Drum’n’Bass, Reggea, Dancehall music scene  —  as well as people from any other place that are associated with that social-group, who actually do say “Choon”.  But they will also spell it “Choon”!  This is not the correct pronunciation of the word.  This actually represents a slang term.  (And something which is really annoying…  And this is coming from someone who used to BE a drum’n’bass DJ).






Pretty simple, right?  Well, that is the way it should be.  Let me know if there is any other bit of pronunciation that I can help you with.  Of course, you can go to YouTube and look up videos on your own…  However — just because a video is on YouTube, does not mean that it is actually “good”…  (This one is though) 😎


Have An Excellent Day!




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2 Responses

  1. Imogen S. says:

    I don’t think it’s quite accurate! Tu sound alike CHu before a long U sound, and like To before a short U sound

    • Hello Imogen,

      Thanks for the message.

      First of all, what you are say about the “short or long U” is not a rule. It is only a description of common usage.

      However, the teacher in the video should definitely have mentioned that, and should have used a better example than the word “Tunnel” Thank you for bringing it to my attention so that I could add it to the lesson above.

      But the most important thing – when referring to when the “Letter U” is long – is not actually about simply being “Long”, but about the location in the word. Of course, when the “letter U” is short, it doesn’t matter about the location of the “TU” combination.

      Thanks for helping me improve this post!

      Have An Excellent Day 🙂

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