Help:IPA for Hebrew

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The charts below show the way in which the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) represents Modern/Israeli Hebrew language pronunciations in Wikipedia articles. Since Modern Hebrew has both non-Oriental and Oriental pronunciation, certain letters may be transcribed differently depending on the background of the speaker. See Hebrew phonology for a more thorough look at the sounds of Hebrew.

Note: An image of the chart is also available.
Consonants
IPA Letter(s) English approximation Romanization
b בּ (Bet) bet b
d ד (Dalet) dark d
[1] ג׳ (Gimel with geresh) joy ǧ or j
f פ ף (Fei) fool f or
ɡ ג (Gimel) go g
h ה (Hei) hen h
ħ[2] ח (Chet) no English equivalent; like hen but with the tongue against the pharynx or ch
j י (Yud) yes y
k כּ (Kaph)
ק (Qoph)
skin k
l ל (Lamed) left l
m מ ם (Mem) man m
n נ ן (Nun) no n
p פּ (Pei) spin p
q[2] ק (Qoph) no English equivalent; like cup but with the tongue further back q or k
ʁ[3] ר (Resh) Somewhat like run; French rouge r
s ס (Samech)
שׂ (Sin)
see s
ʃ שׁ (Shin) she š or sh
t ט (Tet)
ת (Tav)
sting t
ts[1] צ ץ (Tsadi) cats ts (or tz)
[1] צ׳ ץ׳ (Tsadi with geresh) chair č or ch
v ב (Vet)
ו (Vav)
וו (double Vav)
voice v or /w
w[4] וו (double Vav)
ו (Vav)
we w
χ ח (Chet)[2]
כ ך (Chaph)
Similar to Scottish loch / or ch/kh
z ז (Zayin) zoo z
ʒ ז׳ (Zayin with geresh) beige ž
ʔ א (Aleph)
ע (Ayin)[2]
uh-(ʔ)oh ʾ or '
ʕ[2] ע (Ayin) no English equivalent ʿ or '
Vowels
IPA Letter(s) English approximation Romanization
a ָ (Kamatz), Hebrew Patah.svg (Patach), father a
e Hebrew Zeire.svg (Zeire), Hebrew Segol.svg (Segol), Tilde Schwa.svg (Shva) bed e
i יHebrew Hiriq.svg(Hiriq-Yud), Hebrew Hiriq.svg(Hiriq) see i
o ֹ  (Holam alone), וֹ (with any mater lectionis), ָ  (Kamatz katan) story o
u וּ (Vav with shuruk), Hebrew Backslash Qubuz.svg (Kubutz) boot u
Diphthongs
IPA Letter(s) English approximation Romanization
ei יHebrew Segol.svg (Segol-Yud), Hebrew Zeire.svg (Zeire) day ei
ai יHebrew Patah.svg (Patach-Yud), ָי (Kamatz-Yud) why ai
oi וֹי (Vav with holam male-Yud) boy oi
ui וּי (Vav with shuruq-Yud) we ui
ao (rare) או (Alef-Vav) cow ao
ju (rare) יוּ (Yud-Vav with shuruk) cute yu
ij (rare) יְHebrew Hiriq.svg(Hiriq-Yud with Shva Nach)
i.e. "נִיְלֵן" [nijˈlen]
like see iy
Marginal sounds
IPA Letter(s) English approximation Romanization
ð ד׳ (Dalet with geresh) this th
ŋ נג (Nun-Gimel), ring ng
θ ת׳ (Tav with geresh) thing th
Other symbols
IPA Explanation
ˈ Primary stress (placed before the stressed syllable), e.g. אֹכֶל ('food') /ˈʔoχel/, אוֹכֵל‏ ('eating' [participle]) /ʔoˈχel/
ˌ Secondary stress, e.g. הֲאֻמְנָם? ('oh, really?') /ˌhaʔumˈnam/
ː Long vowels (in Tiberian Hebrew) can be transcribed using the IPA gemination sign ː, e.g. the word for "hand" would be יָד /jaːd/ in absolute state and יַד־ /jad/ in construct state.[5] Indicating normative consonant gemination is done with a double consonant, e.g. גַּנָּב ('a thief') /ɡanˈnav/ not /ɡaˈnːav/

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b c /dʒ, ts, tʃ/ are officially written with a tie-bar in the IPA /d͡ʒ, t͡s, t͡ʃ/, respectively. The tie-bar is omitted for simplification.
  2. ^ a b c d e In Modern Israeli Hebrew, /ħ, ʕ, q/ have merged with /χ, ʔ, k/, respectively, while /ħ, ʕ/ are still distinguished by Oriental Hebrew speakers.
  3. ^ /ʁ/ is uvular for most speakers, though some speakers, mostly Orientals, retain an alveolar pronunciation: [r]~[ɾ].
  4. ^ In Modern Israeli Hebrew, /w/ appears in a few words, mostly loanwords. Example: וואו (wow) /waw/. Sometimes, in words which originally have /w/, it is approximated to [v].
  5. ^ Vowel length and quality in Tiberian Hebrew is a matter of debate; this is just one possible example