Appendix:Lower Sorbian pronunciation

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The charts below show the way in which the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) represents Lower Sorbian pronunciations in Wiktionary entries.

Consonants
IPA Examples Nearest English approximation
/b/ baba booty
// b, bjachaŕ beauty
/ɕ/ śamny, wobraź, pišćaŕ sheet
/d/ dawaś do
// djaboł[1] due (RP)
/d͡z/ łdza adze
/d͡ʑ/ rozěliś jeans
/d͡ʒ/[2] ła June
/f/ faraŕ, archiw fool
// figa, šefje fuel
/ɡ/ gano goon
/ɡʲ/ ginuś, gjarnc ambiguity
/h/ hela have
/j/ jajo, sajźaś, wjacor you
/k/ kazaś, rog coop
// kisały, kjarl cute
/l/ lampa lamp
[][3] lipa million
/m/ mama moot
// mica, mjasec mute
/n/ nan no
// niski, njamam, mań onion
[ŋ][4] kanka, bengel long
[ŋʲ][5] śańki avuncular
/p/ papa, zub pooh
// p, pjas pew
/r/ rada rude but trilled; also [ʁ] as in German rot
// rigotaś, rjeśaz, keŕ read but tapped; also [ʁ] as in German rot
/s/ sam, raz soup
/ʃ/[2] šantk, kaž shoot
/t/ tam, kład time
// metjej[1] tune (RP)
/t͡ɕ/ sćěna, asaś, góz cheese
/t͡s/ cakaś cats
/t͡ʃ/[2] čaj, awa choose
/v/[6] volt, vivatowaś vote
//[7] wino, wjedro view
/w/[8] łapiś, kisałe, słowo, wariś, barwa, wałma, sławny was
/x/[9] chach No common English equivalent; Scots loch or Yinglish chutzpah
/z/ zabyś zoo
/ʑ/ źaseś No common English equivalent; like the s of measure but palatalized
/ʒ/[2] žaba measure
Vowels
IPA Examples Nearest English approximation
/a/ nan father
[æ][10] mech, knecht, zdechnuś bat
[e][11] dej, zemja, jeleń, wójna, měj bait
[ə][12] młoźinske, moderne, pónjeźele comma
/ɛ/ derje, góla[13], sobota bet
/i/ lipa beat
/ɪ/[14] něga bit (General American/RP)
/ɨ/ góla[13], šyroki bit (New Zealand English)
[o][15] rowny, šołta boat
/ɔ/ togodla bought
/u/ ruka boot
/ʊ/ góla[13] put, book
Supersegmentals
IPA Explanation
/ˈ/ Primary stress (placed before the stressed syllable), for example internat [intɛrˈnat]

Notes[edit]

  1. 1.0 1.1 Very rare as an independent phoneme; mostly occurs as an allophone of the nonpalatalized equivalent before /i/ and /ɪ/ in loanwords.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 Sometimes described as retroflex, i.e. [ʂ ʐ ʈ͡ʂ ɖ͡ʐ]. The Serbski Institut asserts that the postalveolars /ʃ/ and /t͡ʃ/ are separate phonemes from /ʂ/ and /ʈ͡ʂ/, but if so, the postalveolars appear almost only in loanwords, and the functional load of the contrast is extremely low.
  3. ^ Allophone of /l/ before /i/ and /ɪ/.
  4. ^ Allophone of /n/ before /k ɡ/.
  5. ^ Allophone of /n/ before /kʲ ɡʲ/.
  6. ^ Occurs only in loanwords; not reliably distinguished from /w/ by all speakers.
  7. ^ Phonetic realizations vary from a palatalized bilabial to a palatalized labiodental fricative, [vʲ] ~ [βʲ]; generally replaced by /j/ before /a/ and /ɛ/ but may be retained there in careful speech. The Serbski Institut describes it as a palatalized labiovelar approximant, [wʲ], but it is unclear what that is supposed to mean; perhaps [ɥ].
  8. ^ Phonetic realizations before a vowel vary from a labiovelar approximant to a velarized bilabial approximant or fricative, [w] ~ [β˕ˠ] ~ [βˠ]. At the end of syllable, always realized as [w].
  9. ^ Some but not all speakers have palatalized [xʲ] as an allophone of /x/ after /i/ and /ɪ/.
  10. ^ Allophone of /ɛ/ between a “hard” consonant (i.e. any other than /l/ or a palatalized or alveo-palatal consonant) and /x/.
  11. ^ Allophone of /ɛ/ before /j/ (regardless of the quality of the preceding consonant), in the word zemja and its derivatives, and between two “soft” consonants (i.e. /l/ or a palatalized or alveo-palatal consonant). Before /j/ in the following syllable there is free variation between the allophones [e] and [ɛ].
  12. ^ Allophone of /ɛ/ in unstressed final and antepenultimate open syllables.
  13. 13.0 13.1 13.2 The letter ⟨ó⟩ represents /ɛ/, /ɨ/, or /ʊ/ depending on dialect; but ⟨ój⟩ is always /ɛj/ [ej]. The pronunciation /ʊ/, as in Upper Sorbian, is now only marginal in Lower Sorbian.
  14. ^ Replaced with /ɛ/ (in its allophone [e]) in before /j/. The contrast between /ɪ/ and /ɛ/ is lost in unstressed syllables for many speakers in casual speech.
  15. ^ Allophone of /ɔ/ before /w/.

Further reading[edit]

  • Schaarschmidt, Gunter (1998). The Historical Phonology of the Upper and Lower Sorbian Languages. Heidelberg: Universitätsverlag C. Winter. →ISBN.
  • Serbski Institut (2019). Niedersorbische Aussprache.
  • Starosta, Manfred (1999). Dolnoserbsko-nimski słownik – Niedersorbisch-deutsches Wörterbuch. Bautzen: Domowina-Verlag. →ISBN, pp. 15–21.
  • Stone, Gerald (2002), “Sorbian (Upper and Lower)”, in Comrie, Bernard; Corbett, Greville G., The Slavonic Languages, London and New York: Routledge, pp. 593–685, →ISBN.