Determining whether a single vowel is long or short, requires a good knowledge of the rules for breaking up a word into its
If a syllable ends in a vowel, the vowel is always long.
In the examples below, the words are divided into syllables.
ma-ken (to make)
we-ten (to know)
ko-men (to come)
dro-gen (to dry)
But: when o precedes the letter r, it is pronounced as when oo precedes the letter r: [ɔː]
sto-ren (to disturb)
ho-ren (to hear)
Tu-ne-si-e, TunesiŽ (Tunisia)
In originally foreign words:
No open double vowel
The no-open-double-vowel rule is an important spelling rule you are advised to learn as soon as possible. Although adults can and do make many spelling mistakes, disregarding this rule will make your text look a bit childish.
a syllable never ends in a double vowel
This is not necessary because a single vowel at the end of a syllable is already long. It does not need to be doubled.
As you will learn later, the letter e is an exception to this rule (double e). Indeed, one of those nasty little exceptions, but you will appreciate that the reason for this is quite sensible.
All mp3 files on this page:
maken, water, dra, na
weten, beter, wezen, bezig
alibi, politie, minister, finale
komen, drogen, boten
storen, horen, vorige
buren, TunesiŽ, tribune
baby, derby, lyceum