Minimal Pair List Consonants /b/ versus /Ɵ/: 72 pairs

   Minimal pair: Consonants /b/ versus /Ɵ/: 72 pairs

The spelling of /b/ is always either <b> or <bb>. The /Ɵ/ sound is always spelled <th>. I have excluded several pairs retrieved by the computer in which the sounds occurred at different places in the word, such as broth/throb .

The contrast is between a voiced stop and a voiceless fricative, fairly well separated in the mouth. It is unlikely to be a listening problem, although many speakers will have difficulty articulating the /Ɵ/ sound if it does not occur in their own language.

The only pair involving a taboo word is buggery/thuggery .

Interesting pairs include

arbour Arthur
Bertie thirty
borough thorough

The mean density value is 1.2%. The list makes 43 semantic distinctions, a loading of 60%.

arbour Arthur 
bane thane
bank thank
  banked thanked
  banking thanking
  banks thanks
barb bath
batch thatch
  batches thatches
bawd thawed
beam theme
  beams themes
beery theory
beef thief
  beeves thieves
Bertie thirty
bicker thicker
bin thin
bird third
  birds thirds
boar thaw
  boars thaws
board thawed   
bole thole
  boles tholes
borax thorax
bore thaw
  bored thawed
  bores thaws
borough thorough
bought thought
Bourne Thorne
brash thrash
brawl thrall
  brawls thralls
bread thread
  breaded threaded
  breads threads
breeze threes
brew threw
brew through
brill thrill
brush thrush
  brushes thrushes
bud thud
  budded thudded
  budding thudding
  buds thuds
bug thug
  bugs thugs
buggery thuggery
bum thumb
  bummed thumbed
  bumming thumbing
  bums thumbs
bump thump
  bumped thumped
  bumping thumping
  bumps thumps
burst thirst
  bursting thirsting
  bursts thirsts
buy thigh
  buys thighs
cab Cath 
deb death 
dub doth 
gob Goth 
lobe loath 
mob moth
  mobs moths
rob wrath