1. Word accent: strong and weak forms

Accent (/ˈæk.sənt, ˈæk.sɛnt/) - is the phonetic prominence given to a particular syllable in a word, or to a particular word within a phrase. When this prominence is produced through greater dynamic force, typically signaled by a combination of amplitude (volume), syllable or vowel length, full articulation of the vowel, and a non-distinctive change in pitch, the result is called stress accentdynamic accent, or simply stress. When it is produced through pitch alone, it is called pitch accent (although this term is often used with a somewhat different meaning; see below). When it is produced through length alone, it is called quantitative accent. English has stress accent.

A prominent syllable or word is said to be accented or tonic; the latter term does not imply that it carries phonemic tone. Other syllables or words are said to be unaccented or atonic. Syllables are frequently said to be in pretonic or post-tonic position; certain phonological rules apply specifically to such positions. For instance, in American English, /t/ and /d/ are flapped in post-tonic position.
In some languages, accented syllables have the typical features of stress accent as listed above, except that the change in pitch on such syllables may be distinctive; that is, an accented syllable may carry more than one possible tone (and differences in tone sometimes distinguish words), whereas unaccented syllables do not carry tone. An example of this is Serbo-Croatian accent. The term pitch accent is frequently used to denote accent systems of this type (in spite of inconsistency with the definition of this term given above).

2. Word boundaries: assimilation, elision, hiatus

A. Definition - word boundaries are the beginning and the ending of a word. In writing, word boundaries are conventionally represented by spaces between words. In speech, word boundaries are determined in various ways, as discussed below.

B. Word boundaries in speech

Assimilation - In linguisticsassimilation is a common phonological process by which one sound becomes more like a nearby sound. This can occur either within a word or between words. In rapid speech, for example, "handbag" is often pronounced [ˈhæmbæɡ]. As in this example, sound segments typically assimilate to a following sound (this is called regressive or anticipatory assimilation), but they may also assimilate to a preceding one (progressive assimilation). While assimilation most commonly occurs between immediately adjacent sounds, it may occur between sounds separated by others ("assimilation at a distance").
Assimilation can be synchronic—that is, an active process in a language at a given point in time—or diachronic—that is, a historical sound change.

A related process is coarticulation, where one segment influences another to produce an allophonic variation, such as vowels acquiring the feature nasal before nasal consonants when the velum opens prematurely or /b/ becoming labialised as in "boot". This article describes both processes under the term assimilation.

Elision - ilinguisticselision or deletion is the omission of one or more sounds (such as a vowel, a consonant, or a whole syllable) in a word or phrase when speaking. Sometimes sounds are elided to make a word easier to pronounce. The word elision is frequently used in linguistic description of living languages, and deletion is often used in historical linguistics for a historical sound change.
In English as spoken by native speakers, elision comes naturally, and it is often described as "slurred" or "muted" sounds. Often, elision is deliberate. It is a common misconception that contractions automatically qualify as elided words, which comes from slack definitions: not all elided words are contractions and not all contractions are elided words (for example, 'going to' → 'gonna': an elision that is not a contraction; 'can not' → 'cannot': a contraction that is not an elision).
In French, elision is mandatory in certain contexts, as in the clause C'est la vie (elided from *Ce est la vie).

Hiatus in phonologyhiatus (/haɪˈeɪtəs/"gaping") refers to two vowel sounds occurring in adjacent syllables, with no intervening consonant. When two adjacent vowel sounds occur in the same syllable, the result is instead described as a diphthong. The English words hiatus and diaeresis themselves each contain a hiatus between the first and second syllables.

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