The sound /ŋ/ velar, nasal consonant




  • "ng" - ring
  • "n" (before /k/ or /g/) - pink, finger


The sound /ŋ/ can appear in these consonant clusters:
  • Beginning of a Syllable
  • End of a Syllable
/ŋk/ ("nk" / "nc") - pink, function
/ŋks/ ("nks" / "nx") - sinks, lynx 
/ŋkt/ ("nked") - thanked
/ŋz/ ("ngs") - things
/ŋθ/ ("ngth") - length
/ŋd/ ("nged") - hanged

Grammar Tip:

The sound /ŋ/ is part of the suffix "-ing." This suffix is used to mark several categories of words in English.
  • Progressive verbs: I was sleeping. You are cooking.
  • Gerunds: Sleeping is good. Writing is hard.
  • Present participial adjectives: The movie was exciting. This class is boring. 
Compare /ŋ/ with /g/:

These are both voiced velar consonants. However, /g/ is a stop while /ŋ/ is a nasal. When you pronounce /ŋ/, air should flow out of your nose.

You can hear the difference between /ŋ/ and /g/ in these words.
1. A. bang, B. bag
2. A. hung, B. hug
3. A. tang, B. tag
4. A. rings, B. rigs
5. A. longing, B. logging
6. A. single, B. seagull

Now, compare /ŋ/ and /n/:

These are both nasal consonants. However, /n/ is an alveolar nasal and /ŋ/ is a velar nasal. When you pronounce /ŋ/, the back of your tongue should touch the back of your mouth and the tip of your tongue should be low in your mouth..
You can hear the difference between /ŋ/ and // in these words.
1. A. long, B. lawn
2. A. hanged, B. hand
3. A. things, B. thins
4. A. singer, B. sinner
5. A. winging, B. winning
6. A. forgiving, B. forgiven
Listen and repeat these words:
1. long
2. sing
3. hang
4. young
5. things
6. drink
7. thanks
8. angry
9. single
10. length
11. monkey
12. blanket
13. uncle
14. searching
15. wanting
16. conquest
17. language
18. meaningful
19. ingredient
20. belonging 

Now, practice /ŋ/ in sentences. Say the words first, then the sentences.
1. young - engaged - ring 
In America, a young engaged woman wears a ring..
2. uncle - helping - hang 
My uncle is helping me hang curtains.
3. bring - missing - ingredient
Can you bring the missing ingredient?
4. drink - something - evening
I like to drink something hot in the evening.
5. king - strength - ruling 
A king needs strength for ruling well.
6. thinking - things - long
I've been thinking about these things for a long time.

To practice with different varieties of English, choose another native English speaker by clicking one of the links below:

Consonants /d/ and /g/

What we understand will appear here!
The answer has not yet been rated
The answer has not yet been rated
The answer has not yet been rated
The answer has not yet been rated