Consonant Clusters

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beginning with voiceless labiodental fricative---- / f /

024---------fθ (final) ---------fifth, twelfth---[ Note: many speakers do not pronounce "f" before "th" ]

025---------fθs (final) --------fifths, twelfths---[ Note: many speakers do not pronounce "f" before "th" ]

026---------fθl (medial) ------fifthly---[ Note: many speakers do not pronounce "f" before "th" ]

027---------ft (final) ---------craft, drift, gift, left, lift, loft, soft

028---------ft (medial) -------after, daftest, often rafter, softly, swiftly, thrifty

029---------fts (final) --------crofts, drifts, gifts, lifts, lofts

030---------fs (final) ---------beliefs, cliffs, chefs, chiefs, hankerchiefs, laughs

/ m / / p / / b / / f / / v / / θ / / ð / / n / / t / / d /
/ s / / z / / l / / ʧ / / ʤ / / ʃ / / ʒ / / ŋ / / k / / g /

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Paste words containing consonant clusters into the search engine
of The British National Corpus [opens search engine window ].

/ *fθ / (final) -------fifth fifthly fifths twelfth twelfths

/ *ft / (final) -------adrift aloft bereft cleft craft croft daft deft draft drift gift graft left lift loft makeshift needlecraft raft rift shaft shift sift soft swift theft thrift tuft uplift

/ *fs / (final) -------aperitifs bailiffs beliefs bluffs briefs cliffs chefs chiefs cuffs dwarfs engulfs foodstuffs gaffs handcuffs handkerchiefs hoofs leafs loafs motifs playoffs proofs puffs reefs roofs tariffs sheriffs sniffs spoofs surfs tiffs weatherproofs whiffs woofs

False Friends

Many speakers prefer to leave the final "f" silent in words such as: fifth, fifths, fifthly, twelfth and twelfths.
Squeezing in a labio-dental consonant directly before a dental one is a little awkward, even for native speakers of English.

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