Pronunciation question し


#1

Dear Wanikani community,

This is my first ever topic (please be gentle :wink:)

In the recent overhaul the “Sheen” pronunciation was changed to “Sheep”. However, I always thought that the " i " sound in し was pronounced as in the word “ship”, lets call that a normal mouth i, while the one in “Sheep” will be a smiling face i sound correct?

The smiling face " i " does not exist in my language that is the reason why I associated the i sound closer to “ship”. Since the mnemonics have been redone I rather imagine funny ships if the pronunciation is closer.

Hope someone out there can help!


#2

し is indeed pronounced like in “sheep”, not “ship”. It is, as you put it, the smiling face “i”.


#3

Really? I would have described し as being much more like “ship” than “sheep”. Gonna have to peg this one down to accents, probably.


#4

Perhaps you pronounce ‘ship’ differently than I do, then? For me, there is no question that し is not like ‘ship’.

I’d pronounce the ‘i’ in ‘ship’ the same as in the word ‘his’, for example.


#5

The pronunciation is at the beginning of this video


#6

I pronounce し, sheep, she, sheets, sheen, and Charlie Sheen all the same way :thinking:


#7

Spent a few seconds being weird and saying sheep and ship out loud, and to me it sound like the shi in ship sounds somewhat like しぇ.


#8

The “i” vowel used in American English “ship” or “hit” (IPA ɪ) does not exist in Japanese.


#9

Whaat? They’ve removed Charlie Sheen as well?

I could always remember those mnemonics so well because he always wanted to win, he’d probably even win at WaniKani.


#10

That’s nice. They’re trying to make sure the website is usable in the future as well, long after pop culture things from the early 2010’s are no longer known to the general userbase.


#11

Definitive guide on how to pronounce “sheep”! :sheep:

(Also, a couple of personal mnemonics involve Shaun the Sheep, but that’s another story.)


#12

Wow thanks this video is great! At 00:58 you can clearly see he goes for the smiley face i.

Now I have also discovered that じ is also closer to the smiley face i than to the pronunciation of “j” in french.

I’ll need to rewire my brain to go for sheeps instead of ships then!


#13

Haha, same with me! But we can still use Sheen all we want. I use Charlie for し and Martin for しい. They can delete them from their reading mnemonics but they can’t delete them from my reading notes!