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F & V: Perfect English Enunciation

Posted On: May 2, 2020

In a previous post we talked about how to pronounce v and w with clarity. To piggy back on those sound pairs, let’s look at v and f. 

F & V Minimal Pairs: Ferry - Very



Are you looking to perfect how you pronounce F and V when spelling and sounding out words in English? In the video below, Jennifer Kumar of Authentic Journeys sounds out a few minimal F-V pair words in English: 

  • V/F at the end of the word: leaf / leave, safe / save
  • V/F at the start of the word: ferry (fairy) / very, fender / vendor
  • V/F changes the part of speech: belief / believe, grief / grieve


Tutorial on F and V: Phonetics & Spelling with F & V



What are some of the similarities of F and V? 
What are key differences between F and V? 

Can you distinguish the sounds by ear and mouth (you listening to others, and you yourself making these sounds)? 

V and F are paired together because the facial positions are the same for both. 


The difference? V is a voiced consonant – we will hear the sound with vibration, where as with F, it’s unvoiced or silent; only air will pass through the top teeth when touching the bottom lip. 

Feel free to listen to a few more videos linked up below from YouTube and if you want, send me your response videos or upload them to YouTube and tag me! 


More videos from YouTube on F and V.

Practice the list of minimal pairs with Rachel. 
Few  –  View 
Fail  –  Vail 
Feel  –  Veal 
Fender –  Vendor 
Fat  –  Vat 
Fan  –  Van  

Practice more pronunciation with Jon. 


Jennifer Kumar, author of this post can help you to communicate more effectively with Americans. Contact us to learn more.

Related Posts: 
Compare V and W in English to Indian Languages 
Focus on saying words ending in TION 

Problems with speaking too fast or too slow 


Original post date: June 2016, Updated May 2020

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