Is the ‘R’ Silent in February? Explained

Yes, the ‘R’ in ‘February’ is silent. This means that the word is pronounced as “FEH-broo-ary,” with the stress on the first syllable.

While some people may pronounce the ‘R’ in ‘February,’ this is not the standard or correct pronunciation in English. In fact, many English speakers may not even be aware that there is an ‘R’ in the word since it is so commonly silent.

The ‘R’ in ‘February’ is a prime example of a silent letter in English. Silent letters are letters that are not pronounced in a word but are still included in the spelling. In this case, the ‘R’ is not pronounced, but it is still written in the word.

Pronunciation in American English and UK English

In American English and UK English, the pronunciation of ‘February’ is generally the same as in other varieties of English. There may be some regional variations in pronunciation, so you may hear slight differences in the way the word is pronounced depending on where you are in the United States or United Kingdom.

How to Pronounce “February” Correctly

In the United States, the most common pronunciation is “feb-yoo-air-ee.” This is considered correct by both Merriam-Webster and American Heritage dictionaries, along with the less common “feb-roo-air-ee” pronunciation.

While “feb-roo-air-ee” is still considered the standard pronunciation, most dictionaries recognize the pronunciation of February without the first “r” (“feb-yoo-air-ee”) as an acceptable variant. Not everyone is so tolerant, though, and some people may consider the “feb-yoo-air-ee” pronunciation to be incorrect.

Some English speakers pronounce the word as “feb-yoo-ary” with a “yoo” sound, in an analogy of the pronunciation of January. This pronunciation is also considered acceptable by some dictionaries.

The general correct pronunciation of ‘February’ is “FEH-broo-ary,” with the stress on the first syllable and the ‘R’ silent. While some people may pronounce the ‘R,’ this is not the standard or correct pronunciation in English. Remember to practice your pronunciation and listen carefully to native speakers to improve your English language skills.