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International Phonetic Alphabet chart for English dialects

This chart shows the most common applications of the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) to represent English language pronunciations.

See Pronunciation respelling for English for phonetic transcriptions used in different dictionaries.

Contents

ChartEdit

This chart gives a partial system of diaphonemes for English. The symbols for the diaphonemes are given in bold, followed by their most common phonetic values. For the vowels, a separate phonetic value is given for each major dialect, and words used to name corresponding lexical sets are also given. The diaphonemes and lexical sets given here are based on RP and General American; they are not sufficient to express all of the distinctions found in other dialects, such as Australian English.

English consonants
Dia-
phoneme
[1]
Phones Examples
p , p pen, spin, tip
b b, but, web
t , t, ɾ, ʔ[2] two, sting, bet
d d, , ɾ[3] do, daddy, odd
t͡ʃʰ, t͡ʃ chair, nature, teach
d͡ʒ, d͜ʒ̊ gin, joy, edge
k , k cat, kill, skin, queen, unique, thick
ɡ ɡ, ɡ̊ go, get, beg
f f fool, enough, leaf, off, photo
v v, voice, have, of
θ θ, [4] thing, teeth
ð ð, ð̥, [5] this, breathe, father
s s see, city, pass
z z, zoo, rose
ʃ ʃ she, sure, session, emotion, leash
ʒ ʒ, ʒ̊ genre, pleasure, beige, equation, seizure
h h, ɦ,[6] ç[7] ham, hue
m m, ɱ[8] man, ham
n n no, tin
ŋ ŋ ringer, sing,[9] finger, drink
l l, ɫ,[10] , ɫ̥,[11] ɤ[12] w, o, ʊ[13] left, bell, sable, please
r ɹʷ, ɹ, ɾ,[14] ɻ, ɹ̥ʷ, ɹ̥, ɾ̥, ɻ̊,[11] ʋ[15] run, very, probably
w w, [11] we, queen
j j yes, nyala
hw ʍ, w[16] what
Marginal consonants
x x, χ, k, , h, ɦ, ç loch (Scottish),[17] ugh[18]
ʔ ʔ uh-oh
English vowels and diphthongs
Dia-
phoneme
[1]
AuE[19][20] CaE[21] GA[22][23][24] InE[25] IrE[26] NZE[24][27] RP[28][29] ScE[30] SAE[31][32] SSE WaE[33] Keyword Examples
æ æ,
æː[34]
æ~a,

ɛə[35]

æ, eə~ɛə[35] æ~ɛ æ~a ɛ æ~a ɐ̟ a~æ~ɛ ɛ[36] a TRAP lad, bad, cat[37]
ɑː / æ ɐː äː ɐː ɑː äː~ɑː~
ɒː~ɔː
ä[38] BATH pass, path, sample
ɑː ɒː ɑ~ä ɑː PALM father
ɒ ɔ ɒ ɒ~ä ɑ ɔ ɒ~ɔ ɔ ɒ̈~ʌ̈ ɔ ɒ LOT not, wasp
ɒ / ɔː ɒ~ɔ~ɑ[39] ɒ̈~ʌ̈,
ɔː~
CLOTH off, loss, cloth, long, dog, chocolate[40]
ɔː ɒː ɔː o̞ː ɔː~ ɒː THOUGHT law, caught, all, halt, talk
ə ə ə ə ɘ ə ə ə COMMA about
ɪ ɪ ɪ ɪ~ə~ʌ ɪ~i, ə[41] i, ɪ ɪ KIT sit
i ɪi̯ i i ɪi̯ ɪi̯ e, i i HAPPY city
ɪi̯ i FLEECE see
~ meat
æɪ̯ eɪ̯ æɪ̯ ɛi̯ e eɪ̯~ɛɪ̯~
æɪ̯~äɪ̯~
ʌɪ̯
e[42] FACE date
ei day, pain, whey, rein
ɛ e ɛ ɪ ɛ̝ ɛ ɛ~e~ɪ ɛ, e[43] ɛ DRESS bed[44]
ɜːr ɵː(ɹ) ɚ ɜː(ɾ)~äɾ ɚː, ɔɹ~ʊɹ[45] ɵː(ɹ) əː(ɹ) ʌɾ[45] ø̈ː(ɹ)~
ø̞̈ː(ɹ)~
əː(ɹ)
ə(ɹ) ɜː(ɾ) NURSE burn
ɪɾ~ʌɾ[45] bird
ɚː, ɛɹ[45] ɛɾ[45] herd, earth
ər ə(ɹ) ə(ɾ) ɚ ɘ(ɹ) ə(ɹ) əɾ ə(ɹ) ə(ɾ) LETTER winner, donor, massacre[46]
ʌ ɐ ʌ̈~ɜ̞~ɐ̝ ə~ɜ ɞ~ʊ ɐ ə ~ ʌ ~ ɑ[47] ʌ ɐ~ä ä ə~ɜ STRUT run, won, flood
ʊ ʊ ʊ~ʊ̞̈ ʊ ʊ ɵ ʉ ʊ~ʊ̈ u, ʊ ʊ FOOT put
hood
ʉː ʉu̯ ~ʊu̯~ʉu̯ ʉː ɵʉ̯ u̟ː~ʉː~
u GOOSE through, you
ɪu[48] threw, yew
juː jʉː (j)u̟ juː jʉː jɵʉ̯ ju̟ː~jʉː~
jyː
ju cute, dew, ewe
ɑe̯ ʌɪ̯~ɜɪ̯~ɐɪ̯[49] äɪ̯ ɑɪ̯~ɔɪ̯ ɑe̯ ɑɪ̯ əi̯~ae̯ äɪ̯~äː~
ɑɪ̯~ɑ̟ː
ai̯ PRICE flight, mice
ɑɪ̯ äɪ̯ my, wise, high
ɔɪ oɪ̯ ɔɪ̯ ɔɪ̯~oɪ̯ ɒɪ̯ ɒɪ̯~oɪ̯, äɪ̯ oɪ̯ oɪ̯ oi̯ ɔɪ̯~ɒɪ̯ ɔi̯ ɒi̯ CHOICE boy, hoist
ɐʉ̯ ɵʊ̯ oʊ̯ oʊ̯, ɐʉ̯ əʉ̯ ɛʊ̯~œʊ̯~
œʉ̯~œɤ̯̈~
œː~ʌʊ̯
o[42] GOAT no, toe, soap
ou̯ tow, folk
ɔʊ̯ oə̯~oʊ̯ ɔʊ̯ ɒʊ̯~ɔʊ̯ soul, roll, cold
æɔ̯ ʌʊ̯~ɜʊ̯[49] äʊ̯~æʊ̯ äʊ̯ æu̯~ɛu̯ æo̯ aʊ̯ ɘʉ̯ äʊ̯~äː~
æʊ̯
au̯ MOUTH about, house
äʊ̯~ɑʊ̯ now, trout
ɑːr ɐː(ɹ) ɑɹ~ɐɹ ɑɹ äː(ɾ) aːɹ~

äːɹ

ɐː(ɹ) ɑː(ɹ) ɐ̟ɾ äː(ɹ)~ɑː(ɹ)~
ɒː(ɹ)~ɔː(ɹ)
ä(ɹ) aː(ɾ) START arm, car
ɪər ɪː(ɹ)~
ɪːə(ɹ)
ɪɹ iɹ~
iə̯ɹ
ɪə̯(ɾ)~
iː(ɾ)
iːɹ iə̯(ɹ)[50] ɪə̯(ɹ)~
ɪː(ɹ)
ɪə̯(ɹ)~
ɪː(ɹ)
iə̯(ɹ) ɪə̯(ɾ) NEAR deer, here
ɛər eː(ɹ)~
eːə(ɹ)
ɛɹ ɛ(ə̯)ɹ~
ɛə̯(ɾ)~
eː(ɾ)
eːɹ ɪə̯(ɹ)~
iə̯
[50]
ɛə̯(ɹ)~
ɛː(ɹ)
[51]
ɛə̯(ɹ)~
ɛː(ɹ)~
eː(ɹ)
ɛ(ɹ) ɛː(ɾ) SQUARE mare, there, bear
ɔːr oː(ɹ) ɔɹ ɔɹ~oɹ ɒː(ɾ) ɑɹ oː(ɹ) o̞ː(ɹ) ɔɾ ɔː(ɹ)~
oː(ɹ)
ɔ(ɹ) ɒː(ɾ) NORTH sort, warm
oːɹ o̝ɾ oː(ɾ) FORCE tore, boar, port
ʊər ʉːə(ɹ)~
oː(ɹ)
ʊɹ~ɔɹ~oɹ ʊə̯(ɾ)~
uː(ɾ)
uːɹ,
oːɹ
ʉːɘ(ɹ)~
oː(ɹ)
ɵː(ɹ)~
o̞ː(ɹ)
[52]
ʉɾ ʊə̯(ɹ)~
oː(ɹ)
uə̯(ɹ) ʊə̯(ɾ) CURE tour, moor
jʊər jʉːə(ɹ)~
joː(ɹ)
jɚ~
jʊɹ~jɵɹ
jʊɹ, jɚ jʊə̯(ɾ)~
juː(ɾ)
juɹ, joːɹ jʉːɘ(ɹ)~
joː(ɹ)
jɵː(ɹ)~
jo̞ː(ɹ)
jʉɾ jʊə̯(ɹ),
joː(ɹ)
jɔ(ɹ) ɪʊə̯(ɾ) pure, Europe
Dia-
phoneme
[1]
AuE CaE GA InE IrE NZE RP ScE SAE SSE WaE Keyword Examples
Other symbols used in transcription of English pronunciation
IPA Explanation
ˈ Primary stress indicator (placed before the stressed syllable); for example, rapping /ˈræpɪŋ/
ˌ Secondary stress/full vowel indicator (placed before the stressed syllable); for example, pronunciation /prəˌnʌnsiˈeɪʃən/
. Syllable separation indicator; for example, ice cream /ˈaɪs.kriːm/ vs. I scream /ˌaɪ.ˈskriːm/
̩ ̍ Syllabic consonant indicator (placed under the syllabic consonant); for example, ridden [ˈɹɪdn̩]

See alsoEdit

NotesEdit

  1. ^ a b c This is a compromise IPA transcription, which covers most dialects of English.
  2. ^ /t/ is pronounced [ɾ] in some positions in GA and Australian English, and is possible in RP in words like butter, [ʔ] in some positions in Scottish English, English English, American English and Australian English, and [] non-initially in Irish English.
  3. ^ /d/ is pronounced [ɾ] if preceded and followed by vowels in GA and Australian English.
  4. ^ /θ/ is pronounced as a dental stop [] in Irish English, Newfoundland English, Indian English, and New York English, merges with /f/ in some varieties of English English, and merges with /t/ in some varieties of Caribbean English. The dental stop [] also occurs in other dialects as an allophone of /θ/.
  5. ^ /ð/ is pronounced as a dental stop [d̪] in Irish English, Newfoundland English, Indian English, and New York English, merges with /v/ in some varieties of English English, and merges with /d/ in some varieties of Caribbean English. [] also occurs in other dialects as an allophone of /ð/.
  6. ^ The glottal fricative /h/ is often pronounced as voiced [ɦ] between vowel sounds and after voiced consonants.
  7. ^ /h/ is pronounced [ç] before the palatal approximant /j/, and sometimes before high front vowels.
  8. ^ The bilabial nasal /m/ is pronounced as labiodental [ɱ] before f and v, as in symphony [ˈsɪɱfəni], circumvent [ˌsɝkəɱˈvɛnt], some value [ˌsʌɱˈvæɫjuː].
  9. ^ In some dialects, such as Brummie, words like ringer, sing /ˈɹɪŋə ˈsɪŋ/, which have a velar nasal [ŋ] in most dialects, are pronounced with an additional /ɡ/, like "finger": /ˈɹɪŋɡə/.
  10. ^ Velarized [ɫ] traditionally does not occur in Irish English; clear or plain [l] does not occur in Australian, New Zealand, Scottish, or American English. RP, some other English accents, and South African English, however, have clear [l] in syllable onsets and dark [ɫ] in syllable rimes.
  11. ^ a b c Sonorants are voiceless after a fortis (voiceless) stop at the beginning of a stressed syllable.
  12. ^ L-vocalization in which l is pronounced as [ɤ] is prevalent in Standard Singapore English.
  13. ^ L-vocalization in which l is pronounced as [w], [o], and [ʊ] occurs in New Zealand English and many regional accents not included in the chart, such as Cockney, New York English, Estuary English, Pittsburgh English, and African-American Vernacular English.
  14. ^ /r/ is pronounced as a tap [ɾ] in some varieties of Scottish and Irish English.
  15. ^ R-labialization, in which r is pronounced as [ʋ], is found in some accents in Southern England.
  16. ^ Some dialects, such as Scottish English, Irish English, and many American South and New England dialects, distinguish voiceless [ʍ] from voiced [w]; see winewhine merger and voiceless labiovelar approximant.
  17. ^ Marginal in most accents, and otherwise merged with /k/, see Lockloch merger.
  18. ^ This common English interjection is usually pronounced with [x] in unscripted spoken English, but it is most often read /ʌɡ/ or /ʌk/
  19. ^ Harrington, Cox & Evans (1997)
  20. ^ Cox & Palethorpe (2007)
  21. ^ Boberg (2004)
  22. ^ Kenyon & Knott (1953)
  23. ^ Kenyon (1950)
  24. ^ a b Mannell, Cox & Harrington (2009)
  25. ^ Sailaja (2009:19–26)
  26. ^ Wells (1982:422)
  27. ^ Bauer et al. (2007:97–102)
  28. ^ Roach (2004:241–243)
  29. ^ "Case Studies – Received Pronunciation Phonology – RP Vowel Sounds". British Library.
  30. ^ Scobbie, Gordeeva & Matthews (2006:7)
  31. ^ Bekker (2008)
  32. ^ Lass (2002:111–119)
  33. ^ Coupland & Thomas (1990:93–136)
  34. ^ See badlad split for this distinction.
  35. ^ a b In most of the United States (with high dialectal variation), and to a lesser degree in Canada, special /æ/ tensing systems occur.
  36. ^ Suzanna Bet Hashim and Brown, Adam (2000) 'The [e] and [æ] vowels in Singapore English'. In Adam Brown, David Deterding and Low Ee Ling (eds.) The English Language in Singapore: Research on Pronunciation, Singapore: Singapore Association for Applied Linguistics ISBN 981-04-2598-8, pp. 84–92.
  37. ^ Often transcribed /a/ for RP, for example in dictionaries of the Oxford University Press.
  38. ^ Deterding, David (2007). Singapore English. United Kingdom: Edinburgh University Press. pp. 24–26. ISBN 978 0 7486 3096 7.
  39. ^ ɒ~ɔ occurs in American accents without the cotcaught merger (about half of today's speakers); the rest have ɑ.
  40. ^ In American accents without the cotcaught merger, the LOT vowel (generally written o) appears as ɒ~ɔ instead of ɑ before the fricatives /f/, /θ/ and /s/ and the velar nasal /ŋ/; also usually before /ɡ/, especially in single-syllable words (dog, log, frog, etc.), and occasionally before /k/ (as in chocolate). See Lotcloth split. In American accents with the cotcaught merger (about half of today's speakers), only ɑ occurs.
  41. ^ It is not clear whether this a true phonemic split, since the distribution of the two sounds is predictable; see Kitbit split.
  42. ^ a b Deterding, David (2000) 'Measurements of the /eɪ/ and /oʊ/ vowels of young English speakers in Singapore'. In Adam Brown, David Deterding and Low Ee Ling (eds.), The English Language in Singapore: Research on Pronunciation, Singapore: Singapore Association for Applied Linguistics, pp. 93–99.
  43. ^ Mary W.J. Tay (1982). "'The phonology of educated Singapore English'". English World-Wide. "3" ("2"): 135–45. doi:10.1075/eww.3.2.02tay.
  44. ^ Often transcribed /e/ for RP, for example in Collins English Dictionary.
  45. ^ a b c d e See Fernfirfur merger for this distinction in some varieties.
  46. ^ Sometimes transcribed for GA as [əɹ], especially in transcriptions that represent both rhotic and non-rhotic pronunciations, as [ə(ɹ)].
  47. ^ The STRUT vowel in BrE is highly variable in the triangle defined by ə, ʌ and ɑ, see 'STRUT for Dummies'
  48. ^ In Welsh English, you, yew and ewe are /juː/, /jɪu/ and /ɪu/ respectively; in most other varieties of English they are homophones.
  49. ^ a b Some dialects of North American English have a vowel shift called Canadian raising, in which the first element of the diphthongs /aɪ, aʊ/ is raised in certain cases, yielding [ʌɪ̯, ʌʊ̯] or [əɪ̯, əʊ̯]. Canadian English has raising of both diphthongs, but most dialects in the United States only have raising of /aɪ/. In monosyllables, raising occurs before voiceless consonants, so right [ɹʌɪ̯t] and out [ʌʊ̯t] have raised vowels, but eyes [aɪz] and loud [laʊd] do not.
  50. ^ a b Merging NEAR and SQUARE is especially common amongst young New Zealanders.
  51. ^ While the actual pronunciation is [ɛə(ɹ) ~ ɛː(ɹ)], it can also be transcribed /eə(ɹ)/.
  52. ^ Roach (2004) notes that many people in England use [] for this vowel, but also that RP traditionally distinguishes between maw /mɔː/ and moor /mʊə/, tore /tɔː/ and tour /tʊə/, as well as paw /pɔː/ and poor /pʊə/. If one wishes to make that distinction today it would be best to use /ɵː/ instead of /ʊə/. This will lead to tore as /toː/ and tour as /tɵː/.

ReferencesEdit