Pronunciation – The ‘-ed’ endings on past regular verbs

The –ed ending is added to regular verbs in the simple past and the past participle.
It can be difficult to pronounce correctly, even at advanced level.
Luckily, there are some guidelines to help you pronounce this correctly.
There are three different ways to pronounce the –ed ending. However, the majority of endings have the ‘e’ as silent. It is not often pronounced.
Two words in which the ‘e’ is pronounced are ‘started’ and ‘collided’.
If the final sound of the infinitive is a /t/ or a /d/ sound, the ‘e’ is pronounced. For example, want – wanTED. Need – neeDED.

1./t/ after voiceless sounds (you can identify a voiceless sound by putting your hand on your head or your throat and checking for vibration. If there’s no vibration, it’s a voiceless sound).
Examples of voiceless sounds are:

/p/ – play
/s/ – say
/th/ – three
/ch/ – chips
/h/ – hello
/sh/ – wash



Vocabulary: Adjectives of Character

How would you describe Mamen? – cool, laid-back, generous and kind and friendly.
Use ‘a bit…’ to moderate a negative adjective. “She’s a bit unfriendly.”
‘Quite’ before an adjective can mean ‘very’ or ‘a little’, depending on the stress adn intonation.
“Reza’s QUITE friendly.” – He’s very friendly.
“Reza’s QUITE friendly.” (rising intonation) – He’s a bit friendly, but not very.

despistado – forgetful, absent-minded
ambicioso – ambitious
pesado – annoying, irritating, boring, tiresome (a pain in the neck!)
discutidor – argumentative
malhumorado– bad-tempered



In this episode: Christmas Podcast – celebrations , cava, traditional English Christmas food – Christmas pudding, turkey, mince pies and all the trimmings (con todas las guarniciones)
Craig’s going to Burma for Christmas. Reza’s visiting his family in Belfast. He’ll be eating Brussel sprouts (coles de Bruselas) and stuffing (relleno).

Christmas Customs:

What do you usually do on Christmas day? – Reza watches the Queen’s speech.

Did you have a Christmas tree when you were a child? Reza’s family put their Christmas presents around the tree and they open them before the meal.
Craig’s family used to open the presents as soon as they got up.
Did you believe in Santa Claus? Reza seems to remember seeing Santa Claus in the middle of the night.
Craig’s parents used to leave a present at the foot of his bed so that he wouldn’t disturb his parents.
Some families leave milk and cookies (or brandy!) out for Santa. Craig’s family didn’t do it.



Grammar: COULD is related to CAN. Both are modal verbs. Could is the past of can and the conditional. Could = podría OR podía (could is both the CONDITIONAL and THE PAST of CAN).

If I won the lottery. I would buy a big house.
(could in the conditional = would + be able) “If I won the lottery, I could (would be able to) buy many things. (Craig and Reza speak about conditional sentences in Episode 11
If you could change a law or introduce a new law, what law would you change or introduce?
Craig WOULD introduce a 4-day working week. That way he COULD have a 3-day weekend.
Use COULD and COULDN’T for ability in the past
Could and couldn’t are the past forms of can and can’t (for ability):
When Reza was a child he could run very fast. Now he can’t!
When Craig lived in London, he could drive on the left.
In the UK we couldn’t sit outside in Novenber and drink coffee. It was too cold!
Use COULD for possibilities in the future: We could go out for a beer tonight if you feel like it.
Use COULD (and WOULD) to make polite requests:
Could/Would you please sit nearer to the microphone?
Could/Would you pass me the salt, please?
Could and would are also used in reported speech.

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