Wikivoyage:Pseudo-phoneticization guide

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This guide provides suggestions for making pseudo-phonetic pronunciation cues for Wikivoyage phrasebooks. The goal is to make somewhat phonetic suggestions that could be read aloud according to English spelling rules to make the correct sounds.

Basic rules[edit]

The basic rules for pronunciation cues are as follows:

  • Build up the cues from the pronunciation alphabet below.
  • Separate words in the cue by spaces.
    • English "I love you" → igh luhv yoo
  • Separate syllables in a word by hyphens.
    • English "over" → oh-vuhr
  • Use ALL CAPS to show syllables that are emphasized.
    • English "emphasize" → EHM-fuh-sighz
  • Leave off terminal periods ("."), but leave in terminal question marks ("?") or exclamation marks ("!").
    • English "It's OK." → ihtz oh-KAY
    • English "What's your name?" → WUHTZ yoor NAYM?
    • English "Help!" → HEHLP!
  • Avoid the temptation to use English words in their entirety. Mixing words and phonetics makes it hard for a reader to tell how to pronounce phoneticizations that look like English words.
    • Spanish "hay" → igh, not eye
    • French "six" → seess, not cease

Pronunciation alphabet[edit]

The following alphabet shows how we like to represent sounds in Wikivoyage phrasebooks. Try to find the sound you're trying to approximate in the definitions, and then use the representation given. These are rough approximations; fine points of pronunciation can be glossed over, unless there's a risk of being misunderstood.

If there's a sound in the language you're trying to provide pronunciation cues for that isn't represented, add a representation here.

like 'a' in English "hat"
ah 
like 'a' in English "father"
aw 
like 'aw' in English "dawn"
ay 
like 'ay' in English "hay"
like 'b' in English "bird"
ch 
like 'ch' in English "chin"
ck 
like 'ck' in English "kick" (end of syllable only)
like 'd' in English "dog"
dh 
like 'th' in English "those"
ee 
like 'ee' in English "knee"
eh 
like 'e' in English "bed"
eu 
like 'eu' in Dutch "keuken" and French "heureux"
ey 
like 'ei' in Dutch "mei", like 'ij' in Dutch "mij"
like 'f' in English "fun"
like 'g' in English "go"
gh 
like 'g' in Dutch "geen"
like 'h' in English "hand"
ih 
like 'i' in English "pin", "hit"
igh 
like 'i' in English "time"
like 'j' in English "jump", like "dg" in English "edge"
like 'k' in English "kill" (beginning of syllable only)
kh 
like 'ch' in Scottish "loch"
like 'l' in English "love"
ll 
like 'll' in English "mill" (end of syllable only)
like 'm' in English "me"
like 'n' in English "nose"
ng 
like nasal 'n' in French "vin", like 'ng' in English "sing"
ny 
like ñ in Spanish "mañana", like gn in French "agneau", like nj in Dutch "oranje", like nh in Portuguese "vinho"
like 'o' in English "lot"
oh 
like 'o' in English "hope"
oe 
like ö in German "Königsberg," a bit like i in sir
oo 
like 'oo' in English "moon"
ow 
like 'ow' in English "cow"
like 'p' in English "push"
like 'r' in English "row"
rh 
like 'r' in French "français"
rr 
like 'rr' in Spanish "perro"
like 's' in English "sun" (beginning of syllable only)
sh 
like 'sh' in English "shed", "mush"
ss 
like 'ss' in English "hiss" (end of syllable only)
like 't' in English "top"
th 
like 'th' in English "thin"
uh 
like 'u' in English "bud", 'a' in English "comma" (schwa)
uu 
like 'u' in Dutch "nu", like 'ut' in French "salut"
uy 
like 'ui' in Dutch "huis", like 'œ' in French "œil"
like 'v' in English "vicar"
like 'w' in English "win"
like 'y' in English "yes" (beginning of syllable only)
yy 
like 'i' in Dutch "mooi", like 'il' in French "œil" (end of syllable only)
like 's' in English "has", 'z' in English "zero"
zh 
like 's' in English "treasure"