Consonants /Ɵ/ versus /ʧ/, 46 pairs     [thinchin.html]

The /Ɵ/ sound is spelled with <th>. The /ʧ/ sound is spelled with <ch> or <tch>.

This is a contrast between a fricative and an affricate, both voiceless and in the same region of the mouth. It is surprising that it is not more of a problem, but this may be because /Ɵ/ is an uncommon sound in English and does not occur in many other languages.

The mean density value is 2.2%. The list makes 33 semantic distinctions, a loading of 72%.

Arthur archer
Beith beach
Beith beech
berth birch
  berthed birched
  berthing birching
birth birch
Cath catch
doth Dutch 
filth filch 
hath hatch 
kith kitsch
lath larch 
month munch
north nautch 
path parch 
Perth perch
pith pitch 
teeth teach 
tenth tench 
thane chain 
  thanes chains 
thaw chaw 
  thawed chawed 
  thawing chawing 
  thaws chaws 
theory cheery 
thick chick 
thief chief 
thin chin 
  thins chins
think chink 
  thinking chinking 
  thinks chinks 
Thor chaw
thug chug 
  thugs chugs 
thumb chum 
  thumbed chummed 
  thumbing chumming 
  thumbs chums 
thump chump 
  thumps chumps 
withe which 
withe witch
wroth roach 

John Higgins, Shaftesbury, November 2010.