Fun With Silent Letters


Here is just a brief sampling of examples. . .

A is silent when ea makes the short e sound:  head, bread, deaf, meant

B is silent in debt, lamb, tomb, climb, numb, plumb, comb, thumb, crumb, doubt, subtle

C is silent in muscle, yacht, indict, scissors, landscape scene, scent, black, science (c sounds like an s next to e, i, y)  ***A clever web page visitor commented that on the sc examples, perhaps the s is the silent letter, since c usually sounds like an s next to e, i, and y!***

D is silent in Wednesday, handkerchief, (in dge in words ~ fudge, bridge, ledge, the d is silent and g sounds like a j next to e, i, and y)

E is silent in heist, feud, hope (and other magic e words), great (when ea sounds like long a)

One F is silent in stiff, cuff, scoff (double the last f on one syllable short vowel words)

G is silent in gnaw, gnome, phlegm, straight, though, foreign, champagne, cologne, high (igh says long i)

H is silent in honor, heir, ghost, hour, hurrah, Pooh, khaki, Gandhi, chord, whistle ~ (in all wh words the h is silent), school, night (igh words say long i)

I is silent in business, fashion, cushion, pail, receive, believe, juice

J is silent in. . . .can you think of one?  I can’t!

K is silent in know, knee, knock, knead, knot, knife, knickers, knight, knowledge

L is silent in talk, folk, salmon, colonel, psalm, calf, half, yolk, chalk, calm, will, tall (the double ll words ~ you only hear one l.  L is doubled on one syllable short vowel words)

M is silent in mnemonic

N is silent in autumn, solemn, condemn, hymn, column,

O is silent in leopard, jeopardy, people

P is silent in psalm, cupboard, receipt, corps, pneumonia, psychology

Q is silent in lacquer

One R is silent in myrrh, catarrh

S is silent in isle, aisle, island, debris, Illinois, mess (when ss is double at the end, you only hear one s as in brass, fuss.  The s is doubled on one syllable short vowel words.)

T is silent in often, thistle, fasten, mortgage, ballet, ricochet, Christmas, gourmet, tsunami, rapport, asthma, listen, castle, soften, potpourri, watch ~ any tch words ~ you don’t hear the t

U is silent in build, guild, plague, guest, questionnaire (all qu words), guitar, guilt, tongue, colleague, guide, dialogue

V is silent in. . . .can you think of one?  I can’t!

W is silent in whole, write, sword, answer, Greenwich, two, wrist, hawk

X is silent in. . . .can you think of one?  I can’t!

Y is silent in prayer, mayor

Z is silent in rendezvous, jazz, buzz  (when the word ends in double z you only hear one z.  You double the z in one syllable short vowel words)


 I am happy to share my pages, but please cite me as you would expect your students to cite their sources.  Copyscape alerts me to duplicate content.copyscape-banner-white-160x56

Comments are closed.