Key to Pronunciation

  • ə
  • sofa (sō´fə), item (ī´təm), easily (ē´zəlē), cannon (kăn´ən), circus (sûr´kəs)
  • ă
  • act (ăkt), bat (băt)
  • ā
  • ape (āp), fail (fāl), day (dā)
  • â
  • air (âr), care (kâr)
  • ä
  • art (ärt), father (fä´ŧħər)
  • b
  • back (băk), labor (lā´bər), cab (kăb)
  • ch
  • chin (chĭn), hatchet (hăch´ət), rich (rĭch)
  • d
  • dock (dŏk), lady (lā´dē), sad (săd)
  • ĕ
  • end (ĕnd), steady (stĕd´ē), met (mĕt)
  • ē
  • eve (ēv), clear (klēr), see (sē)
  • f
  • fat (făt), phase (fāz), cough (kôf)
  • g
  • get (gĕt), bigger (bĭg´ər), tag (tăg)
  • h
  • hand (hănd), ahead (əhĕd´)
  • hw
  • wheel (hwēl), which (hwĭch)
  • ĭ
  • it (ĭt), pill (pĭl), mirror (mĭr´ər)
  • ī
  • iron (ī´ərn), eye (ī), buyer (bī´ər)
  • j
  • jam (jăm), ginger (jĭn´jər), edge (ĕj)
  • k
  • kit (kĭt), tackle (tăk´əl), cook (kŏŏk)
  • l
  • little (lĭt´əl), holly (hŏl´ē), pull (pŏŏl)
  • m
  • man (măn), hammer (hăm´ər), climb (klīm)
  • n
  • new (nŏŏ), known (nōn), winner (wĭn´ər)
  • ng
  • singing (sĭng´ĭng), finger (fĭng´gər), sang (săng), sank (săngk)
  • ŏ
  • hot (hŏt), body (bŏd´ē)
  • ō
  • over (ō´vər), hope (hōp), grow (grō)
  • ô
  • orbit (ôr´bĭt), fall (fôl), saw (sô)
  • ŏŏ
  • foot (fŏŏt), wolf (wŏŏlf), put (pŏŏt), pure (pyŏŏr)
  • ōō
  • boot (bōōt), lose (lōōz), drew (drōō), true (trōō)
  • oi
  • oil (oil), royal (roi´əl), boy (boi)
  • ou
  • out (out), crowd (kroud), how (hou)
  • p
  • pipe (pīp), happy (hăp´ē)
  • r
  • road (rōd), appeared (əpērd´), carpenter (kär´pəntər)
  • s
  • so (sō), cite (sīt), baste (bāst)
  • sh
  • shall (shăl), sure (shōōr), nation (nā´shən)
  • t
  • tight (tīt), better (bĕt´ər), talked (tôkt)
  • th
  • thin (thĭn), bath (băth)
  • ŧħ
  • then (ŧħĕn), father (fä´ŧħər), bathe (bāŧħ)
  • ŭ
  • but (bŭt), flood (flŭd), some (sŭm)
  • û
  • curl (kûrl), girl (gûrl), fern (fûrn), worm (wûrm)
  • v
  • vest (vĕst), trivial (trĭv´ēəl), eve (ēv)
  • w
  • wax (wăks), twins (twĭnz)
  • y
  • you (yōō), onion (ŭn´yən)
  • z
  • zipper (zĭp´ər), ease (ēz), treads (trĕdz)
  • zh
  • pleasure (plĕzh´ər), rouge (rōōzh)
  • FOREIGN SOUNDS

    • ö
    • as in French peu (pö), German Goethe (gö´tə)
    • ü
    • as in French Cluny (klünē´)
    • kh
    • as in German ach (äkh), ich (ĭkh); Scottish loch (lŏkh)
    • N
    • this symbol indicates that the preceding vowel is nasal as in French cinq (săNk), un (öN), sans (säN), tombe (tôNb), en (äN); Portuguese São João (souN zhwouN)

    ACCENTS AND HYPHENS

    • ´
    • primary accent, written after accented vowel or syllable: Nebraska (nəbrăs´kə), James Buchanan (byōōkă´nən)
    • ˝
    • secondary accent: Mississippi (mĭs˝əsĭp´ē)
    • dash, replacing obvious portion of pronunciation: hegemony (hĭjĕm´ənē, hē–, hēj´əmō˝nē, hĕg´ə–)
    • -
    • hyphen, to prevent ambiguity in syllabification: Erlanger (ûr´lăng-ər), dishearten (dĭs-här´tən)

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright 2005, Columbia University Press. Licensed from Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.