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|Accademia della Crusca
Italian music terminology
Italian Sign Language
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|C, c||ci||/k/ or /tʃ/|
|E, e||e||/e/ or /ɛ/||è, é|
|G, g||gi||/ɡ/ or /dʒ/|
|H, h||acca||∅ silent|
|I, i||i||/i/ or /j/||ì, í, î|
|O, o||o||/o/ or /ɔ/||ò, ó|
|S, s||esse||/s/ or /z/|
|U, u||u||/u/ or /w/||ù, ú|
|V, v||vi or vu||/v/|
|Z, z||zeta||/ts/ or /dz/|
The Italian alphabet has five vowel letters, ⟨a e i o u⟩. Of those, only ⟨a⟩ represents one sound value while each of the others has two. In addition, ⟨e⟩ and ⟨i⟩ indicate a different pronunciation of a preceding ⟨c⟩ or ⟨g⟩ (see below).
In stressed syllables, ⟨e⟩ represents both open /ɛ/ and close /e/. Similarly, ⟨o⟩ represents both open /ɔ/ and close /o/ (see the Italian phonology for further details on these sounds). There is typically no orthographic distinction between the open and closed sounds represented, though accent marks are used in certain instances (see below). In unstressed syllables, only the close variants occur except before sonorants.
In addition to representing the respective vowels /i/ and /u/, ⟨i⟩ and ⟨u⟩ also typically represent the semivowels /j/ and /w/, respectively, when unstressed and occurring before another vowel. Many exceptions exist (e.g. attuale, deciduo, deviare, dioscuro, fatuo, iato, inebriare, ingenuo, liana, proficuo, riarso, viaggio). Unstressed ⟨i⟩ may represent that a preceding or following ⟨c⟩ or ⟨g⟩ is "soft" (dolce).
C and G 
Normally, ⟨c⟩ and ⟨g⟩ represent the plosives /k/ and /ɡ/, respectively, unless they precede a front vowel (⟨i⟩ or ⟨e⟩) when they represent the affricates /tʃ/ (like English ch) and /dʒ/ (like English j).
The letter ⟨i⟩ may also function merely as an indicator that the preceding ⟨c⟩ or ⟨g⟩ is soft, e.g. cia (/tʃa/), ciu (/tʃu/). When the hard pronunciation occurs before a front vowel, digraphs ⟨ch⟩ and ⟨gh⟩ are used, so that ⟨che⟩ represents /ke/ or /kɛ/ and ⟨chi⟩ represents /ki/. In the evolution of the Latin language, the postalveolar affricates /tʃ/ and /dʒ/ were contextual variants of the velar consonants /k/ and /ɡ/. They eventually came to be full phonemes, and the said orthographic practice was introduced to distinguish them. The phonemicity of the affricates can be demonstrated with the minimal pairs:
|Anywhere but before ⟨i e⟩||c||caramella /karaˈmɛlla/
|g||gallo /ˈɡallo/||gi||giallo /ˈdʒallo/|
|Before ⟨i e⟩||ch||china /ˈkina/||c||Cina /ˈtʃina/|
|gh||ghiro /ˈɡiro/||g||giro /ˈdʒiro/|
⟨G⟩ is also used to mark that a following ⟨l⟩ or ⟨n⟩ is soft (this is not always true in loanwords from other languages). With ⟨l⟩, a following ⟨i⟩ is also necessary, though this may be stressed or unstressed: famiglia /faˈmiʎʎa/ ('family').
The digraph ⟨sc⟩ is used before ⟨e⟩ and ⟨i⟩ to represent /ʃ/; before other vowels, ⟨sci⟩ is used. Otherwise, ⟨sc⟩ represents /sk/, the ⟨c⟩ of which follows the normal orthographic rules explained above.
|Anywhere but before ⟨i e⟩||sc||scalo /ˈskalo/
|Before ⟨i e⟩||sch||scherno /ˈskerno/||sc||scerno /ˈʃɛrno/|
Other letters 
In addition to being used to indicate a hard ⟨c⟩ or ⟨g⟩ before front vowels, ⟨h⟩ is also used to distinguish ho, hai, ha, hanno (present indicative of avere, 'to have') from o ('or'), ai ('to the'), a ('to'), anno ('year'); since ⟨h⟩ is always silent, there is no difference in the pronunciation of such words. In foreign loanwords, the h is still silent: hovercraft /ˈɔverkraft/.
⟨Z⟩ represents an alveolar affricate consonant; either voiced /dz/ (zanzara /dzanˈdzara/ 'mosquito') or voiceless /ts/ (nazione /naˈttsjone/ 'nation'), depending on context, though there are few minimal pairs.
⟨S⟩ also is ambiguous to voicing; it can represent /s/ or /z/. However, these two phonemes are in complementary distribution everywhere except between two vowels in the same word and, even in such environments, there are very few minimal pairs.
The letters J ("I lunga" [long I]), K ("cappa"), W ("V doppia" or "doppia V" [double V]), X ("ics") and Y ("ipsilon" or "I greca" [Greek I]) are used for loanwords only.
The acute accent may be used on ⟨e⟩ and ⟨o⟩ to represent close-mid vowels when they are stressed in a position other than the default second-to-last syllable; this use of accents is generally mandatory only in the final syllable. Since final ⟨o⟩ is hardly ever close-mid, ⟨ó⟩ is very rarely encountered in written Italian (metró). The grave accent may be used on ⟨e⟩ and ⟨o⟩ when they represent open-mid vowels. The accents may also be used to differentiate minimal pairs within Italian, for example pèsca "peach" and pésca "fishing", but in practice use of this possibility is limited to didactic texts. In the case of final ⟨i⟩ and ⟨u⟩, both possibilities are encountered. The by far most common option is the grave accent, though this may be due to the rarity of the acute accent to represent stress; the alternative of employing the acute is in practice limited to erudite texts, but can be justified as both vowels are high (as in Catalan); however, since there are no corresponding low (or lax) vowels to contrast with in Italian, both choices are equally acceptable.
See also 
- Danesi, Marcel (1996). Italian the Easy way.