Since /h/ only occurs initially, the /k/ sound is spelled with <c> or <k> except in the letter name Q and the word queue. The /h/ sound is spelled <h> throughout.
The contrast is between a velar stop and a glottal fricative, both voiceless. The /h/ sound may cause some problems among learners who articulate /h/ too strongly, turning it into a velar fricative, but in general it does not cause many listening problems.
A familiar alliterative expression using this contrast is "horses for courses". Other interesting pairs include:
Taboo word pairs include: cock/hock and cunt/hunt.
The mean density value is 2.8%. The list makes 153 semantic distinctions, a loading of 46%.
cache hash cached hashed caches hashes caching hashing cackles hackles cad had cadges Hadjis cadre harder caisson hasten caissons hastens cake hake calf half calk hawk calked hawked calking hawking calks hawks call hall calls halls call haul called hauled calling hauling calls hauls callow hallow calm harm calmed harmed calming harming calms harms calve halve calved halved calves halves calving halving cam ham cams hams camper hamper campers hampers candid handed candle handle candles handles candy handy canker hanker cankered hankered cankering hankering cankers hankers canned hand cap hap capping happing caps haps capped happed card hard cardboard hardboard care hare cared hared caring haring cares hares care hair cares hairs care Herr careless hairless carolled Harold carp harp carped harped carping harping carps harps carry harry carried harried carries harries carrying harrying carrier harrier carriers harriers cart hart carts harts cart heart carted hearted carts hearts carton hearten cartons heartens cased haste cash hash cashed hashed cashes hashes cashing hashing cassock hassock cassocks hassocks cat hat cats hats catch hatch catches hatches catching hatching cause haws caw haw cawed hawed cawing hawing caws haws choler holler cholers hollers chord hoard chords hoards chord horde chords hordes Co ho Co hoe coal hole coals holes coaling holing coaled holed coaled hold coaming homing coarse hoarse coarsely hoarsely coarseness hoarseness coarser hoarser coarsest hoarsest coarse horse coast host coasted hosted coasting hosting coasts hosts coax hoax coaxed hoaxed coaxes hoaxes coaxing hoaxing cob hob cobs hobs cobble hobble cobbled hobbled cobbles hobbles cobbling hobbling cock hock cocked hocked cocking hocking cocks hocks cocky hockey cod hod cods hods code hoed cog hog cogs hogs cold hold colds holds cold holed colder holder collar holler collared hollered collaring hollering collars hollers collie holly comb home combs homes come hum comes hums coming humming comfrey Humphrey con Hon cone hone coned honed cones hones coning honing conk honk conked honked conking honking conks honks coo Hoo coo who cook hook cooked hooked cooking hooking cooks hooks cooker hooker cookers hookahs cookie hooky cool who'll cooler hula coolers hulas coop hoop cooped hooped cooping hooping coops hoops coos whose coot hoot coots hoots cop hop copping hopping cops hops copped hopped cope hope coped hoped copes hopes coping hoping copper hopper coppers hoppers Copt hopped cord hoard cords hoards corded hoarded cording hoarding cord horde cords hordes core hoar cork hawk corked hawked corking hawking corks hawks corker hawker corkers hawkers corm haulm corn horn corned horned corning horning corns horns cornet hornet cornets hornets corny horny cornier hornier corniest horniest corse hoarse corse horse corses horses Corsham Horsham cosier hosier cosies hoses cot hot cots hots cottar hotter could hood course hoarse course horse courses horses coursing horsing coursed horsed courtier haughtier cove Hove cow how coward Howard cows house cowl howl cowling howling cowls howls cowled howled cub hub cubs hubs cuddle huddle cuddled huddled cuddles huddles cuddling huddling cuff huff cuffed huffed cuffing huffing cuffs huffs cull hull culled hulled culling hulling culls hulls cunt hunt cunts hunts cur her curs hers curb herb curbs herbs curd heard curd herd curds herds curdle hurdle curdling hurdling curdles hurdles curdled hurdled curl hurl curled hurled curling hurling curls hurls curry hurry curried hurried curries hurries currying hurrying curse hearse curses hearses curt hurt cut hut K hay K's haze kail hail Kate hate Katie Haiti keel heal keeled healed keeling healing keels heals keel heel keels heels keeled heeled keeling heeling keener Heanor keep heap keeping heaping keeps heaps kelp help ken hen kens hens key he kick hick kicks hicks kilt hilt kilts hilts kind hind kinds hinds kirtle hurtle kirtles hurtles kiss hiss kissed hissed kisses hisses kissing hissing kit hit kits hits kitting hitting kite height kites heights kobo hobo kobos hoboes overcall overhaul overcalled overhauled overcalling overhauling overcalls overhauls Q hew Q's hews queued hewed queueing hewing Q hue Q's hues Q Hugh racecourse racehorse racecourses racehorses uncooked unhooked
John Higgins, Shaftesbury, May 2010.