Dz (digraph)

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Dz is a digraph of the Latin script, Polish, Kashubian, Latvian, Lithuanian, Slovak, and Hungarian to represent /d͡z/. In Dene Suline (Chipewyan) and Cantonese Pinyin it represents /t͡s/.

In Polish[edit]

dz generally represents [d͡z]. However, when followed by i it is palatalized to [d͡ʑ].

Examples of dz[edit]

About this sound dzwon  (bell)
About this sound rodzaj  (kind, type)

Compare dz followed by i:
About this sound dziecko  (child)
About this sound dziewczyna  (girl, girlfriend)

In Slovak[edit]

In Slovak, the digraph dz is the ninth letter of the Slovak alphabet. Example words with this phoneme include:

  • medzi = between, among
  • hrádza = dam, dike

The digraph may never be divided by hyphenation:

  • medzi → me-dzi
  • hrádza → hrá-dza

However, when d and z come from different morphemes, they are treated as separate letters, and must be divided by hyphenation:

  • odzemok = type of folk dance → od-ze-mok
  • nadzvukový = supersonic → nad-zvu-ko-vý

In both cases od- (from) and nad- (above) are a prefix to the stems zem (earth) and zvuk (sound).

In Hungarian[edit]

Dz is the seventh letter of the Hungarian alphabet. It is pronounced (using English pronunciation) "dzay" in the alphabet, but just "dz" when spoken in a word. In IPA, it is written as /dz/.


In several words, it is pronounced long, e.g.

  • bodza, madzag, edz, pedz

In some other ones, short, e.g.

  • brindza, dzadzíki, dzéta, Dzerzsinszkij

In several verbs ending in -dzik (approx. 50), it can be pronounced either short or long, e.g.

  • csókolódzik, lopódzik, takaródzik

These are verbs where the dz can be replaced by z (and is replaced by some speakers): csókolózik, lopózik, takarózik.

In some of these verbs, there is no free variation: birkózik, mérkőzik (only with z) but leledzik, nyáladzik (only with dz, pronounced long). In some other verbs, there is a difference in meaning: levelez(ik) (correspond with sb.) but leveledzik (to leaf [like a tree]).

It is only doubled in writing when an assimilated suffix is added to the stem: eddze, lopóddzon.


Usage of this letter is similar to that of Polish and Slovak languages. In Hungarian, even if these two characters are put together to make a different sound, they are considered one letter, and even acronyms keep the letter intact.


These examples are Hungarian words that contain the letter dz, with the English translation following.
  • bodza = elderberry
  • edzés = (physical) training
  • edző = coach
  • nyáladzik = salivate

In Esperanto[edit]

Some Esperanto grammars, notably Plena Analiza Gramatiko de Esperanto,[1] consider dz to be a digraph for the voiced affricate [d͡z], as in "edzo" "husband". The case for this is "rather weak".[2] Most Esperantists, including Esperantist linguists (Janton,[3] Wells[4]), reject it.


DZ is represented in Unicode as three separate glyphs within the Latin Extended-B block. It is one of the rare characters that has separate glyphs for each of its uppercase, title case, and lowercase forms.

Code Glyph Decimal Description
DZ Latin Capital Letter DZ
Dz Latin Capital Letter D with Small Letter Z
dz Latin Small Letter DZ

The single-character versions are designed for compatibility with Yugoslav encodings supporting Romanization of Macedonian, where this digraph corresponds to the Cyrillic letter Ѕ.


Additional variants of the Dz digraph are also encoded in Unicode.


  1. ^ Kalocsay & Waringhien (1985) Plena analiza gramatiko de Esperanto, §17, 22
  2. ^ van Oostendorp, Marc (1999). Syllable structure in Esperanto as an instantiation of universal phonology. Esperantologio / Esperanto Studies 1, 52 80. p. 68
  3. ^ Pierre Janton, Esperanto: Language, Literature, and Community. Translated by Humphrey Tonkin et al. State University of New York Press, 1993. ISBN 0-7914-1254-7.
  4. ^ J. C. Wells, Lingvistikaj Aspektoj de Esperanto, Universala Esperanto-Asocio, 1978. ISBN 92 9017 021 2.