How to pronounce 繁栄 han'ei? Is there a glottal stop between the two syllables? Is it //haɴʔeː//, //haɴeː//, //haŋʔeː// or //haŋeː//?


繁栄 and 反映, 半影, ... are pronounced //haɴeː// without glottal stop and ん as //ɴ//.

The combination //ɴ// + vowel is difficult to pronounce, so in some cases, such as 反応【はんのう】, orthography has been adapted to allow for easier pronunciation (although はんおう might still be considered a valid pronunciation). Usually though a word has only a single valid spelling, which sometimes may help to distinguish homophones, e.g. 漢音【かんおん】 and 観音【かんのん】.

This phenomenon is called 連声【れんじょう】 and usually occurs with //ɴ// + //aou//, although the Wikipedia page also gives examples for んゑ > ね.

I guess one should also mention that in the case of //ɴ// + //i//, there is 雰囲気【ふんいき】, which is more often than not pronounced ふいんき...

In any case, //ɴ// + //aiueo// sometimes calls for attention to detail, but putting exceptions aside, ん + あいうえお is pronounced //ɴ// + //aiueo//. In the case of //ɴe// the phonetic realization usually exhibits some palatalization as in [[haɴʲe:]] or nasalization as in [[hãːeː]] (see comments below).

  • 5
    Announcers surely pronounce it as /haɴʲe:/, but people usually do it more like /hãe:/.
    – user4092
    May 25 '15 at 0:45
  • 2
    I would write it as [hãːeː], because the nasal is still moraic.
    – Zhen Lin
    May 25 '15 at 20:11

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