Appendix:List of English words where G is pronounced exceptionally

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The following English words contain the letter "g" pronounced in a way which is an exception to the rules: the soft "g" occurs when the "g" comes before the letters "e", "i" or "y", and the hard "g" occurs elsewhere.

Hard “‘g” where soft “‘g” expected

Furthermore, when the “g” follows another “g” or an “n”, the expectation is that it is pronounced hard, regardless of the following letter. For exceptions to this expectation, see below.

Soft “‘g” where hard “‘g” expected

There are 3 classes of exception to the rule for soft g.

Soft “gg”

Almost any “g” that follows another “g” is pronounced hard, even before “e”, “i” or “y”: for example bigger, foggier and soggy. So having noted that, this only lists exceptions where the “gg” is pronounced soft after all.

  • exaggerate, ~ed, ~es, ~ing, ~ings, ~ion, , ~ions
  • suggest, ~ed, ~ible, ~ing, ~ings, ~ion, , ~ion, , ~ive, , ~iveness, ~s
  • veggies, ~y

Soft “ng”

Almost any “‘g” that follows an n is either pronounced hard (as in anger) or not pronounced at all (as in winger), rather forming a digraph with the n. So we only need to list exceptions where the “‘g” does not form such a digraph, and is pronounced soft after all (as in danger).

Other exceptions

Finally, there are exceptions that fit neither of the above types: a soft “g”, not after n or “g”, and not before “e”, “i” or “y”.

G as /x/

See also