Appendix:Yiddish pronunciation

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

See Yiddish phonology at Wikipedia for a more thorough look at the sounds of Yiddish.

Standard YIVO Yiddish[edit]

Consonants
IPA Examples English approximation
/b/ באַר(bar) ball
/d/ דאָס(dos) done
/d͡z/ האַלדז(haldz) adze
/d͡ʒ/ דזשוכע(dzhukhe) jungle
/f/ פֿאַר(far) fuss
/ɡ/ גוט(gut) guest
/h/ האָר(hor) hut
/j/ יאָר(yor) yard
/k/ קאַץ(kats) cold
/ɫ/ ליד(lid) ball
/m/ מויז(moyz) must
/n/ ניין(neyn) not
[ŋ][1] צונג(tsung) long
/p/ פּויק(poyk) puck
/ʁ/ רעדן(redn) like a French R
(a voiced uvular fricative)[2]
/s/ סידור(sider) soon
/ʃ/ שיר(shir) shall
/t/ טאָג(tog) tall
/t͡s/ צאָן(tson) cats
/t͡ʃ/ טשאָלנט(tsholnt) chair
/v/ וואָס(vos) vanish
/χ/ כאָטש(khotsh) loch (Scottish)
/ʎ/ מיליאָן(milyon) million
/z/ זאָגן(zogn) zoo
/ʒ/ זשאַבע(zhabe) beige, measure
Stress
/ˈ/ אייזל(eyzl)
(/ˈɛɪ̯zl̩/)
as in easel /ˈiːzl̩/
Vowels
IPA Examples English approximation
Monophthongs
/a/ אַקסל(aksl) bra (but shorter)
/ɛ/ עסן(esn) bed
/ɪ/ איבער(iber) sit
/ɔ/ אָרעם(orem) boss
/ʊ/ אונדז(undz) took
Diphthongs
/aɪ̯/ דרײַ(dray) tie
/ɛɪ̯/ בייגל(beygl) hay
/ɔɪ̯/ בויך(boykh) boy
Reduced vowels
/ə/ געזאָגט(gezogt) comma
/l̩/ אייזל(eyzl) bottle
/n̩/ רעדן(redn) button

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ [ŋ] is not a separate phoneme but an allophone of /n/ when directly followed by /k/ or /ɡ/.
  2. ^ The rhotic /r/ is realized by most speakers as a voiced uvular fricative [ʁ]; some use an alveolar trill [r] or an alveolar flap [ɾ].

Dialectal differences[edit]

Vowels[edit]

Vowel phoneme correspondences across dialects
Standard Yiddish WY[1] CY[2] SEY[3] NEY[4] Germanic Examples Semitic Examples
Vowel Translit. IPA
אַ a a a a ɔ a וואַלד(vald) גנבֿ(ganef)
אָ o ɔ ɔ ɔ ɔ אָבער(ober) סוד(sod)
u דאָ(do) כּשר(kosher)
ו u ʊ ʊ ɪ ɨ ʊ גוט(gut) חופּה(khupe)
i בוך(bukh) פּורים(purem)
י i ɪ ɪ ɪ ɨ ɪ זילבער(zilber) גבור(giber)
i בריוו(briv) מדינה(medine)
ע e ɛ ɛ ɛ ɛ ɛ עסן(esn) אמת(emes)
ɛɪ̯ ɛɪ̯~i לעבן(lebn) בגד(beged)
וי oy ɔɪ̯ oː~oʊ̯~aʊ̯ ɔɪ̯ ɔɪ̯ ɛɪ̯ גרויס(groys) עולם(oylem)
בוים(boym)
oʊ̯ oː~oʊ̯ oʊ̯~ɔɪ̯~u ɔɪ̯ הויז(hoyz) גוי(goy)
יי ey ɛɪ̯ aɪ̯ ɛɪ̯ ɛɪ̯ פֿריילעך(freylekh) חן(kheyn)
פֿלייש(fleysh)
ײַ ay aɪ̯ aɪ̯ a aɪ̯ שנײַדער(shnayder) חייל(khayel)
  1. ^ WY: Western Yiddish
  2. ^ CY: Central Yiddish (Poylish)
  3. ^ SEY: Southeastern Yiddish (Ukraynish)
  4. ^ NEY: Northeastern Yiddish (Litvish)

References[edit]

  • Jacobs, Neil G. (2005) Yiddish: A Linguistic Introduction. Cambridge University Press. →ISBN.