From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

The charts below show the way in which the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) represents Vedic and Classical Sanskrit pronunciations in Wikipedia articles. For a guide to adding IPA characters to Wikipedia articles, see {{IPA-sa}} and Wikipedia:Manual of Style/Pronunciation § Entering IPA characters.

See shiksha for a more thorough discussion of the sounds of Sanskrit.


IPA[1] Nagari[1] IAST[1] [2] English approximation
b b about
bh clubhouse
ɕ ś sheep
d d do
dh redhead
j juice
dʑʱ jh hedgehog
ɖ American English bird
ɖʱ ḍh American English birdhouse
ɡ g again
ɡʱ gh loghouse
ɦ h ahead
j y yak
k k skin
kh kin
l l leaf
m m much
n n tenth
ɲ ñ enjoyable[3]
ɳ American English burn[3]
ŋ bank[3]
p p span
ph pan
r[4] r Indian roti
s s soup
ʂ American English worship
t t stable
th table
ʈ stable
ʈʰ ṭh table
c riches
tɕʰ ch chew
ʋ v between wine and vine
IPA Nagari IAST[2] English approximation
ɐ , a comma
, पा ā bra
ɪ , पि i sit
, पी ī feet
ʊ , पु u look
, पू ū loot
, पे e Scottish wait
ɐːi̯[6] , पै ai hi
, पो o Scottish old
ɐːu̯[7] , पौ au how
Syllabic Consonants
[8] , पृ Possibly like bird
r̩ː[9] , पॄ longer ṛ
[10] ऌ, पॢ bottle
Vowel Diacritics
◌̃ ◌̃/m̐ nasal vowel [ɐ̃], [ãː], [õː], etc.)[3]
h [11] head

IPA Nagari IAST[2] English equivalent
ˈ◌ stress[12]
(placed before stressed syllable)

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Devanagari consonant letters such as have the inherent vowel a. Thus, is pronounced ka, even without any vowel sign added. But the IPA and IAST shown here have the consonant k only and do not include the vowel 'a'.
  2. ^ a b c Comparison of IAST with ISO 15919 transliteration.
  3. ^ a b c d e Vowels may occur nasalised as an allophone of the nasal consonants in certain positions: see anusvara and chandrabindu.
  4. ^ /r/ may be phonetically realised as [ɽ], [ɾ] or [ɾ̪] in Classical Sanskrit.
  5. ^ Sanskrit distinguishes between long and short vowels. Each monophthong has a long and short phoneme. The diphthongs, historically /əi, aːi, əu, aːu/, also have a difference in quality: [e, ei, o, ou]. Rarely, vowels may be extra-long.
  6. ^ [ai], [ɐi] or [ɛi] in Classical Sanskrit.
  7. ^ [au], [ɐu] or [ɔu] in Classical Sanskrit.
  8. ^ [ɻĭ] or [ɾɪ] for most modern speakers. [rŭ] for southern speakers.
  9. ^ [ri] or [ɽiː] for most modern speakers. [ru] for southern speakers.
  10. ^ [lrĭ] for most modern speakers. [lĭ] in Bengali and Maithili regions.
  11. ^ Visarga, added after a vowel.
  12. ^ In Classical Sanskrit, stress was predictable by syllable weight: counting from the end of a word, the second-last was stressed if heavy (having a long vowel or a coda consonant); if it was light, the third-last was stressed if heavy; otherwise, stress fell on the fourth-last syllable. Vedic Sanskrit, in contrast, possessed an unpredictable pitch accent.


  • Zieba, Maciej; Stiehl, Ulrich (June 9, 2002). "The Original Pronunciation of Sanskrit" (PDF). Ulrich Stiehl. Retrieved 27 September 2011.