New Graphemes Discussion

Solar Spell introduces 3 new graphemes (letter combinations that represent a sound) to fill gaps in Legacy Spelling.

thh – In Legacy Spelling, th represents two different sounds. Both are formed with the same mouth and tongue position, but one activates the voice box while the other does not. The voiced sound is heard in this and feather, while the unvoiced or whispered sound is heard in thong and moth. This creates learning friction which can be felt by trying to pronounce these words with the opposite sound. In Solar Spell each unique sound is spelled one unique way. th retains the voiced sound while thh is introduced as the unvoiced sound: thhong and mothh.

uu – the /oul/ sound as heard in should and put is often spelled with oo as in book, cook, good, wood. This conflicts with the /oo/ sound as heard in moon and broom. In Solar Spell, oo expresses the /oo/ sound in moon and uu expresses the /oul/ sound in should: shuud, puut, buuk, kuuk, guud, wuud.

zh – Legacy Spelling lacks a root spelling for the /zh/ sound as heard in vision and variously spells it with z, s, ti, ge and others. zh fills this gap. In Solar Spell vision, pleasure and brazier become vizhun, plezhr, and brāzhr.

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