Help:IPA/Hebrew

The charts below show the way in which the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) represents Modern and Biblical Hebrew language pronunciations in Wikipedia articles. For a guide to adding IPA characters to Wikipedia articles, see {{IPA-he}}, {{IPAc-he}} and Wikipedia:Manual of Style/Pronunciation § Entering IPA characters.

Since Modern Hebrew has both non-Oriental and Oriental pronunciations in Israel, certain letters may be transcribed differently depending on the background of the speaker. See Modern Hebrew phonology for a more thorough look at the sounds of Hebrew.

Consonants
IPA BiblicalIPA ModernLetter(s)RomanizationEnglish approximation
bבּ (Beť dǝgušah)bbet
dדּ (Daleť dǝgušah)ddark
ðdד (Ďaleť rafah)
ד׳ (Dalet with geresh)
ď, dh, dthis
fפ ף (Fei rafah)f orfool
ɡגּ (Gimel dǝgušah)ggo
ɣɡג (Ǧimel rafah)ǧ, gh, ggo
hה (Hei)hhen
ħ[1]χח (Ḥeť)or chno English equivalent; like hen but with the tongue against the pharynx
jי (Yoď)yyes
kכּ (Kaf dǝgušah)
kskin
lל (Lameď)lleft
mמ ם (Mem)mman
nנ ן (Nun)nno
pפּ (Pei dǝgušah)pspin
q[1]kק (Qof)q or kk is equivalent to skin. q has no English equivalent; like cup but with the tongue further back
r[2]ʁר (Resh)rSomewhat like run/French rouge
sס (Samekh)
שׂ (Sin smalit)
ssee
ts[3]צ ץ (Ṣadi)ṣ, ts (or tz)cats
ʃשׁ (Šin Yemanit)š or shshe
tתּ (Taw)tsting
tט (Ṭeť)ṭ, tsting
θtת (Ťaw)ť, th, tthing
vב (Veť rafah)
vvoice
wvו (Vav)vvote
w[4]וו (double Vav)wwe
xχח (Chet)[1]
כ ך (Ǩaf rafah)
ǩ or ch/khSimilar to Scottish loch
zז (Zayin)zzoo
ʕ[1]ʔע (Ayin)ʿ or 'no English equivalent but has merged in non-Oriental Hebrew to sound below
ʔא (Alef)
ʾ or 'uh-(ʔ)oh


Marginal sounds (used in transliteration and loan words)
IPALetter(s)RomanisationEnglish
[3]ג׳ (Gimel with gereš)ǧ or jjoy
ŋנג (Nun-Gimel)ngring
ʒז׳ (Zayin with geresh)žbeige
[3]צ׳ ץ׳ (Ṣadi with geresh)č or chchair
θת׳ (Tav with geresh)ththing
ðד׳ (Dalet with geresh)ththe
Vowels
IPA BiblicalIPA ModernLetter(s)RomanisationEnglish approximation
aHebrew Patah.svg (Patach)afather
eHebrew Zeire.svg (Zeire)ebed
ɛeHebrew Segol.svg (Segol)ɛ, ebed
əeTilde Schwa.svg (Shva)ǝ, ebed
iיHebrew Hiriq.svg(Hiriq-Yud), Hebrew Hiriq.svg(Hiriq)isee
oֹ  (Holam alone), וֹ (with any mater lectionis)ostory
ɔoָ  (Kamatz katan)ɔ, ostory
aָ (Kamatz)ɔ, aall
uוּ (Vav with shuruk), Hebrew Backslash Qubuz.svg (Kubutz)uboot


Diphthongs
IPALetter(s)RomanizationEnglish approximation
eiיHebrew Segol.svg (Segol-Yud), Hebrew Zeire.svg (Zeire)eiday
aiיHebrew Patah.svg (Patach-Yud), ָי (Kamatz-Yud)aiwhy
oiוֹי (Vav with holam male-Yud)oiboy
uiוּי (Vav with shuruq-Yud)uiwe
ao (rare)או (Alef-Vav)aocow
ju (rare)יוּ (Yud-Vav with shuruk)yucute
ij (rare)יְHebrew Hiriq.svg(Hiriq-Yud with Shva Nach)
i.e. "נִיְלֵן" [nijˈlen]
iylike see


Other symbols
IPAExplanation
ˈPrimary stress (placed before the stressed syllable): אֹכֶל ('food') /ˈʔoχel/, אוֹכֵל‏ ('eating' [participle]) /ʔoˈχel/
ˌSecondary stress, e.g. הַאֻמְנָם? ('oh, really?') /ˌhaʔumˈnam/
ːLong vowels (in Tiberian Hebrew) can be transcribed using the IPA gemination sign ː: the word for "hand" would be יָד /jaːd/ in absolute state and יַד־ /jad/ in construct state.[5] Indicating normative consonant gemination uses a double consonant: גַּנָּב ('a thief') /ɡanˈnav/ not /ɡaˈnːav/
  • notes

Notes

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