contrast: Two sounds contrast if changing one to the other can change the meaning of a word. For instance, p and b contrast in English because if you change the p in "push" to a b, you get a different word, "bush". Pairs of almost-identical words like these (called minimal pairs) provide strong evidence for the existence of contrast between two sounds. Showing that a phonetic difference involves contrast establishes that it is phonemic as well. [Spanish: contraste]