Mark Mandel thnidu at GMAIL.COM
Tue May 19 16:10:29 UTC 2009

In casual speech (i.e., 98% of the time) I'll completely delete the
/t/ in 90, as well as in 70 and 20, all following /n/.

I just counted to 100 by tens -- a routinized sequence, so maybe less
likely to be altered by my awareness of the question. Only the /t/s in
50 and 60 -- following voiceless fricatives -- were aspirated. 30, 40,
and 80 had non-aspirated stops; I couldn't tell if I was voicing them
or not.

ISTM that my level of carefulness, at least for 20,70, and 90,
increases with the following stages:

a: [d] in 90 and 20, and 70 if I'm not counting. If I am counting,
still no stop at all in 70, prob. due to the extra syllable squeezed
into the same duration by the rhythm

b: unaspirated [t]

c: aspirated [t] in 20. But when speaking this carefully I'm usually
doing so for clarity, especially on the phone, and in that case I will
revert to [d] for 70 and 90 to minimize the chance of confusion with
17 and 19 -- not an issue with 20, of course.

m a m

On Tue, May 19, 2009 at 11:28 AM, Randy Alexander
<strangeguitars at gmail.com> wrote:
> Does anyone normally pronounce the /t/ in "ninety" as a voiceless
> (aspirated) plosive?
> I guess that applies to 80, 70, 60, 50, 40, 30, and 20, but it seems
> to me that 90 most normally gets voiced.

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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