Help:IPA for Catalan
The charts below show the way in which the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) represents Catalan language pronunciations in Wikipedia articles. There are two major standards, one of Catalan (based in Barcelona, encompassing most Eastern Catalan features) and one of Valencian (based in Southern Valencia, encompassing most Western Catalan features). Neither variant is preferred over the other at Wikipedia except in cases where a local pronunciation is clearly more relevant (such as a place in the Valencian Community or a Catalan artist).
See Catalan phonology for a more thorough look at the sounds of Catalan.
- Voiced obstruents /b d ɡ v z dz ʒ dʒ/ are devoiced [p t k f s ts ʃ tʃ] at the end of an utterance.
- Voiced stops /b d ɡ/ become lenited [β ð ɣ] (that is, fricatives or approximants of the same place of articulation) when in the syllable onset and after a continuant. Otherwise they are pronounced as voiced (or devoiced) stops, similar to English b, d, g and p, t, k. Exceptions include /d/ after a lateral consonant, and /b/ after /f/.
- Catalan orthography distinguishes between ‹ll› (representing /ʎ/) and ‹l·l› (representing a geminated /lː/). In regular speech gemination of ‹l·l› is ignored altogether.
- The sonorants /l/, phonetically [ɫ], and /n/ only contrast before vowels. Before consonants, they assimilate to the consonant's place of articulation (e.g. [m] occurs before a labial consonant, [ɲ] and [ʎ] before a palatal consonant, and [ŋ] before a velar consonant). Between a vowel and a pause, only [ɫ] and [n] are found.
- The rhotic consonants /ɾ/ ‹r› and /r/ ‹rr› only contrast between vowels. Otherwise, they are in complementary distribution as ‹r› with, [r] occurring word-initially, after /l/, /n/, and /s/, in compounds and at the end of an utterance; [ɾ] is found elsewhere. Syllable-final /r/ is a tap [ɾ] in Valencia and Majorca. In all Catalan dialects, except most of Valencian, word final /r/ is generally dropped (e.g. parlar [pərˈɫa], fer [ˈfe], but per [pər]). In most cases, word final ‹r› is pronounced when the following word begins with a vowel (e.g. fer-hi [ˈfeɾi]).
- In Western dialects, including Standard Valencian, the pronunciation of the digraph ‹ix› /ʃ/ is [jʃ] (e.g. caixa [ˈkajʃa], Central Catalan [ˈkaʃə]).
- While /ʃ ʒ tʃ dʒ/ are often described simply as "postalveolar" by many sources, phonetic work done by Daniel Recasens shows the postalveolar sibilants to be alveolo-palatal ([ɕ], [ʑ], [tɕ] and [dʑ], respectively). Nevertheless, since ‹ʃ ʒ tʃ dʒ› are overwhelmingly used in the linguistic literature on Catalan and Valencian, those characters are also used at Wikipedia.
- Several dialects have /v/ as a separate phoneme, in particular, Balearic, Alguerese, standard Valencian, and certain parts of Tarragona; e.g. viu [ˈviw]. Betacism (that is, merging of /b/ and /v/) is general in the rest of Catalan areas (e.g. viu [ˈbiw]).
- Other than in loanwords and interjections, the letter ‹h› is always silent.
- All Catalan dialects contrast seven stressed vowels /a ɛ e i ɔ o u/ (except for Balearic dialects that contrast eight stressed vowels—i.e. /a ɛ e i ɔ o u/, plus /ə/: sec /ˈsək/). In unstressed position, the seven-way vowel contrast is reduced in all dialects.
- Eastern Catalan (Alguerese, Balearic, Central and Northern): /e/, /ɛ/, and /a/ reduce to [ə] (though in Alguerese /e/, /ɛ/, and /a/ merge to [a]) while /o/ and /ɔ/ reduce to [u] (however, in most of Majorcan /ɔ/ and /o/ merge to [o]).
- Western Catalan (North-Western and Valencian): /ɛ/ reduces to [e] and /ɔ/ reduces to [o]. Exceptionally there are some cases where unstressed ‹e› and ‹o› may reduce to [a] and [u] respectively.
- In Northern Catalan /u/ becomes [œ] in some instances in contact with palatal consonants (e.g. fulles [ˈfœjəs], standard [ˈfuʎəs]). In other cases it may appear in French interferences, such as sœur or jeunesse, instead of Catalan germana and joventut.
- The semivowels /w/ and /j/ can be combined with most vowels to form diphthongs and triphthongs.
- Burguet Ardiaca, Francesc (1980). Introducció a la fonologia, fonètica i ortografia del català (in Catalan). Mataró (Barcelona): Robrenyo. ISBN 84-7466-025-4.
- Carbonell, Joan F.; Llisterri, Joaquim (1992). "Catalan". Journal of the International Phonetic Association 22 (1-2): 53–56.
- Recasens i Vives, Daniel (1991). Fonètica descriptiva del català : assaig de caracterització de la pronúncia del vocalisme i consonantisme del català al segle XX (in Catalan). Institut d'Estudis Catalans. ISBN 8472831728.
- Romeu i Juvé, Xavier (1983). Manual de fonologia catalana (in Catalan). Barcelona: Barcanova. ISBN 847533119X.
- Veny, Joan (1978). Els Parlars (in Catalan). Barcelona: Dopesa. ISBN 8472353885.
- Wheeler, Max W (2005). The Phonology Of Catalan. Oxford: Oxford University Press. ISBN 0199258147.
- "L'estàndard oral valencià" (in Catalan). Valencia: Acadèmia Valenciana de la Llengua (AVL).