What about ‘accuse’, ‘account’, ‘raccoon’, ‘acclaim’, ‘piccolo’ and ‘moccasin’?
The double ‘c’ can cause some problems because there are two different ways it can be pronounced: ‘ks’ or ‘k’. So which pronunciation should we use, and when? Luckily there is a simple answer to this question. I’m no poet, so this is the closest I can come to a catchy little rhyme to help you remember the rule:
Double ‘c’ before ‘i’ or ‘e’ should be pronounced as ‘ks’.
But double ‘c’ should be a ‘k’ when it comes before anything else.
Not bad, huh?
Here are some examples before ‘i’ or ‘e’: success = suk-SESS, access = AK-sess, accident = AK-si-dent
And some examples before other letters: piccolo = PIK-uh-low, raccoon = ra-KOON, moccasin = MOK-uh-sin, acclaim = uh-KLAIM
One exception that’s worth mentioning here is the double ‘c’ found in many Italian words. These tend to be pronounced as ‘ch’. For example, cappuccino = kap-uh-CHEE-no.
Practice reading this paragraph out loud:
I successfully gained access to the hippest new cafe in Copenhagen. I ordered a cappuccino (an acceptable choice) and the barista was most accommodating. On the way to my seat, I accidentally bumped into someone. I could see she was an actress from a critically acclaimed new film. I wasn’t accustomed to meeting such people, and she was accusing me of spilling her coffee on her new moccasins. I tried not to be distracted by her expensive accessories which accentuated her beauty so perfectly, and I explained it was just an accident. Couldn’t we come to an accord? She thought I should be held accountable. I decided to leave and accelerated towards the door. I successfully slipped out of the cafe behind the man playing the accordion as she continued to yell accusations.