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Pronunciation Guide


Notes on the pronunciation of terms follow many definitions.

Terms for which no pronunciation note is provided are usually words found in most English dictionaries, and pronounced as in standard English.

Parentheses "()" enclose phonetic pronunciations, when followed by "pr." — our abbreviation for "pronounced as." At "appliqué" you will see (pr. AP-lə-KAY) for example.

Pronunciation notes use the following conventions:


Syllables are hyphen-separated. When a syllable is accented, all of its letters are capitalized.

Consonants are pronounced as in average American English.

The letter "g" is always hard (as in "got" rather than "giant"); 'ch' is soft ("church" rather than "chemist").
The letter "j" is the sound that occurs twice in "judge".
The digraph "kh" is the guttural of "loch" or "l'chaim".
The digraph "gh" is the aspirated g+h of "bughouse" or "ragheap" (rare in English).
The letter "s" is always as in "pass", never a z sound.
The digraph "th" is either the sound of "th" in "thick," or the sound of "th" in "than"
The digraph "hw" is the sound of "wh" in "where", rather than the 'w' sound in 'ware'.
The diagraph "zh" is the sound that "s" makes in "vision".

Vowels

 
 
ə . . . . . . unstressed or occluded vowels, often vocalized in unaccented syllables
this inverted "e" is called a "schwa"

a . . . . . . back, that
ah . . . . . father, palm
 
aw . . . . .flaw, caught
ay . . . . . bake, rain
e . . . . . . less, men
 
ee . . . . . easy, ski
i . . . . . . .trip, hit
i: . . . . . . life, sky
o . . . . . . block, stock
oh . . . . . flow, sew
oo . . . . . loot, through
 
ow . . . . .out, how
oy . . . . . boy, coin
uh . . . . . but, some
u . . . . . . put, foot
y . . . . . . yet, young
yoo . . . . few, chew



 

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