Names related to fashion
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Pronunciation, Dialect, & Speech Resources for Audiobook Narrators
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PRONUNCIATION SITES by TOPIC
Food & Drink
People & PEOPLES
Companies, Institutions, Nonprofit Entities, Etc.
Religions, Faiths, & Spiritual Traditions
Science, Technology, & Medicine
PRONUNCIATION SITES by LANGUAGE
SWAHILI / KISWAHILI
lao & thai
North American Cultures (non-English)
IRISH & IRISH GAELIC
SCOTS, SCOTTISH, & SCOTTISH GAELIC
DIALECTS, ACCENTS, & GENERAL LANGUAGE SITES
North American Cultures (non-English)
LANGUAGE MEGASITES INDEX
ADDITIONAL REFERENCE WORKS
Dictionaries & Translators (human-voiced)
Search Tools and Directories
TIPS, TRICKS, TACTICS
= phonetic rendering
= audio samples (including some video)
• Bible Words: Phonetic Pronunciation — Extensive pronunciation guide for Bible words and names, also including notes on common mispronunciations to avoid (e.g., for Abednego: “uh-BED-nih-goh [not uh-BEN-dih-goh].”
• Biblical Greek and Hebrew Lexicons — Linguistic resource from (Christian-oriented) BibleStudyTools.com website, including phonetic spellings of words and names, as well as many human-voiced audio clips.
• Biblical Words Pronunciation Guide — Alphabetical lists with pronunciations drawn from “numerous authoritative sources,” by Net Ministries, a “non/inter-denominational and independent” Christian nonprofit.
• Hitchcock’s Bible Names — Audio-enhanced version of Roswell Hitchcock’s 2,600-some biblical character and place names, originally published in the late 1800s.
• Fashion Pronunciation — Video playlist of pronunciations of 42 major fashion brands and designers, from Imperial Hotel Management College.
• How to Pronounce Every Designer Name! — A to Z pronunciations of 45 major fashion designers in a video from pop culture site PopSugar. NOTE: Some onscreen phonetic spellings are inaccurate, so best to ignore.
• How to Pronounce Fashion Names — From men’s fashion site MaxMayo, two pages featuring embedded videos that each provide pronunciations of 23 major fashion brands and names.
• Watches Pronunciation — Video playlist of pronunciations of 17 world-renowned watch brands, from Imperial Hotel Management College.
Food & Drink
• 19 Food Brand Names & 15 Food Terms — Two YouTube pronunciation videos, co-produced by PopSugar and FoodBeastTV, featuring incorrect and correct pronunciations of food brands and food terms, respectively.
• The American Man’s Guide to the Pronunciation of Scotches — Esquire magazine’s list of major brands of Scotch whisky and their phonetic spellings, designed to preclude pronouncing, say, Glenfiddich to rhyme with crochet stitch and thus to safeguard U.S. testosterone levels on yet another front.
• How Do You Say That Word? — Privately compiled food and wine glossary that includes terms from a variety of cultures but primarily English, French, Italian, and Spanish. Any of the several search and browse options described on the home page yields a term or list of terms. Click on a term’s Know More link to access pronunciations both as audio clips and phonetically rendered.
• How to Pronounce Wine Names — Phonetic pronunciations of more than 150 wines from around the world, from the For Dummies series.
• Wine Pronunciation Guide: Red Bordeaux — Names, with audio pronunciation files, of 101 producers of wine grapes in the Bordeaux region of France, courtesy of international wine merchants Berry Bros. & Rudd.
• World Food Pronunciations — About.com topic page featuring links to lists throughout the site that provide sound files for terms used in French, Italian, Japanese, and German cuisines.
• LegalFlip.com: Legal Glossary — Glossary section of legal-info site for non-lawyers, offering phonetic renderings of a wide range of legal terms accessed alphabetically.
• The Criyng and the Soun: Chaucer Audio Files — Links to textual excerpts from Chaucer’s works, with corresponding audio readings by scholars, intended “to help students improve their pronunciation of Chaucer’s Middle English.” Links begin mid-page to passages from The Canterbury Tales, Troilus and Criseyde, the Dream Visions, and The Legend of Good Women and the Short Poems.
• Big List of Names — Names of European composers and other music-related persons and terms, as well as names and terms in “other languages, mixtures and idiosyncracies [and] ensemble names.”
• Operas and Composers: A Pronunciation Guide — List of titles and composers of major operatic works; clicking an entry triggers an audio pronunciation.
• Pronouncing Dictionary of Music and Musicians — “Prepared primarily for the announcing staff of [Iowa Public Radio station] WOI, . . . the dictionary, with its 30,000 entries, is the most extensive of its type now available. . . . [It] includes a PDF file for each letter of the alphabet.” Be sure to check the extensive lists in the Addenda and Corrections pages, as well as the Pronunciation Conventions.
• SEE ALSO Latin Pronunciation Files for Choirs
• Encyclopedia Mythica: Pronunciation Guide — Phonetic transcriptions of mythical figures, peoples, and places, mostly from the Greek and Roman traditions but also including some Asian, Middle Eastern, Norse, and Native American names.
• Mythology Names — Collection of nearly 1,000 names drawn from 19 cultural mythologies worldwide, most with phonetic renderings. The compilation is part of the much larger Behind the Name site included here under Names|People.
• Mythweb: Encyclopedia of Greek Mythology — Extensive glossary of Greek mythological names and terms with phonetic renderings, organized both by alphabetical Index and by Search.
• Pronunciation Guide for Lattimore’s Iliad — One-page guide to Greek names occurring in Homer’s Iliad (Lattimore translation), with short sections and notes that also make it an effective Quick Reference to classical Greek pronunciation generally.
• AP Pronunciation Guide (unofficial; 2001) — Phonetic renderings of names in the news, as of 2001. Though entries in this unverified and probably unauthorized version of the 2001 AP guide are likely still valid, an up-to-date individual subscription to the official AP Stylebook Online costs .00 a year and includes both phonetic spellings and audio samples. NOTE: Many university libraries license the official online version for student and, sometimes, alumni use.
• Bridging World History: Audio Glossary — Compilation of “350 place names and historical figures; each defined and pronounced aloud.” Note that audio clips use a Standard American delivery, with no special effort to observe native pronunciation features. Depending on context, this Americanization may lead to distortion (as with Simon Bolivar, rather than Simón Bolívar).
• British Pathé — Fascinating and valuable site housing digitized video footage from original newsreel company British Pathé from their archives (1910-1970) of newsreels, cinemagazines, and documentaries. Searchable database provides a YouTube-like resource for names, places, and events of the early to mid 20th century.
• inogolo — “Website devoted to the English pronunciation of the names of people, places, and miscellaneous stuff.” The site contains a searchable database of names with both phonetic and audio pronunciations in English. Browse names alphabetically, by tags, or by topic. Also notable are the site’s Web Search, which queries dozens of name pronunciation websites with a single operation, and Web Directory, a topically organized guide to 50+ name pronunciation resources.
• The Pronunciation of 10,000 Proper Names — Digitized facsimile of 1909 book “giving famous geographical and biographical names, names of books, works of art, characters in fiction, foreign titles, etc.,” by Mary Stuart Mackey and Maryette Goodwin Mackey. Made available by OpenLibrary.org.
• VOA Pronunciation Guide — Comprehensive pronunciation database of some 7,000 personal and place-names worldwide, developed in 2000 by the U.S. government’s Voice of America broadcasting service. The guide is constantly being updated, and in 2013 the site was redesigned for a streamlined, simple-to-use search-or-browse user experience.
People & PEOPLES
• Asian Name Pronunciation Guide — Directory of given names and surnames in nine major East Asian languages, searchable by names or browseable by language; developed at California State Polytechnic University, Pomona.
• Author Name Pronunciation Guide — “Collection of brief recordings of authors & illustrators saying their names,” a free feature from TeachingBooks, an educational service firm.
• Baby Names of Ireland — Audio recordings (by Pulitzer Prize-winning author Frank McCourt) of some 200 masculine and feminine Irish given names, together with a bit of information (meaning, lore, or history) for each.
• Behind the Name — Impressive database of given (or personal) names from cultures worldwide, accessible via search or browsing. Also features an outstanding collection of links to sites treating given names in an equally wide range of world languages. Sites vary in providing pronunciations, whether phonetic, audio, or both.
• Behind the Surname — Surnames sister site of Behind the Name (see above), with its own collection of links to other surname sites.
• BookBrowse: Author Pronunciations — Alphabetically arranged guidance in pronouncing the names of authors whose work has been featured on the BookBrowse site.
• Debrett’s Surname Pronunciation — “Correct pronunciation of surnames, place names and titles” from Debrett’s, long-standing British authority on etiquette and publisher of the incomparable Peerage & Baronetage: “Correct pronunciation is quite rightly no longer restricted to what is called Received Pronunciation . . . Surnames of course belong to people, and not troubling to find out how someone traditionally pronounces his or her name may cause offence.”
• German Pronunciation of Names — German masculine and feminine given names delivered by a native speaker of High German from Schleswig-Holstein / Northern Germany.
• HearNames — Extensive searchable database of audio pronunciations of given names and surnames in various languages; also accessible by browsing alphabetically by language.
• How Do You Pronounce That Name? — Compilation of some 220 surnames with spellings that don’t reflect their pronunciations (phonetically rendered), originally part of a very interesting 2006 article in American Genealogy Magazine.
• How to Pronounce Artists’ Names (Vol. 1) — First of three articles — continued in Vol. 2 and Vol. 3 — from the magazine of the online marketplace Artspace, listing phonetic spellings of a total of 230 names of artists worldwide. Though most names are of contemporary figures, a relative few are from the 19th and 20th centuries.
• How to Pronounce Finnish Names — Extensive collection of sound recordings of Finnish proper names, mostly given names and surnames but also a number of place names and some commercial and institutional names as well. While the alphabetical list and update history pages gather together all the names on the site, the main page also offers nine topical categories (celebrities, geography, politicians, etc.) that list specific individuals or places.
• The Name Engine(R) — According to the site itself, Name Engine “provides the correct name pronunciations of athletes, entertainers, politicians, newsmakers, and more . . . All names are painstakingly researched for authenticity. Personal confirmation is the ultimate goal. At a minimum, they are confirmed by individuals with firsthand knowledge of the name in question . . . Because foreign names inherently sound different in their native tongue, The Name Engine presents the generally accepted “Americanized” version.”
• Name Pronunciation Resources — by Language & Nationality — Adjunct page of the excellent names site Inogolo, providing links to nearly 30 additional names resources grouped by language and ethnicity/nationality.
• Nordic Names Forum: Pronunciation — Adjunct of the Nordic Names site, dedicated to providing help in pronouncing given names from Scandinavian countries. Free registration.
• Pronounce Names — “The purpose of this website is 3-fold: (1) Lookup [sic] pronunciation of a name. (2) Submit pronunciation of a name so that others can pronounce it correctly. (3) Request pronunciation of a name that you don’t know and would like to find out.” Recently, this site has extended many pronunciations to include audio on both its own site and YouTube.
• Pronunciation of Surnames — List of more than 120 surnames, apparently all originating in the UK, together with phonetic spellings of their counterintuitive pronunciations, drawn from the 119th printing (March 1935) of Enquire Within Upon Everything.
• Say How? — Phonetic pronunciations of names of public figures, compiled by the National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped (NLS) for their narrators. Here’s an audio-enhanced version of Say How?, courtesy of the Wolfner Talking Book and Braille Library of the state of Missouri.
• Shakespeare’s Characters: A to Z — Comprehensive directory of character names from Shakespeare’s writings, with phonetic pronunciations of those considered to require them. Part of the much-honored Shakespeare Online website authored by literary scholar Amanda Mabillard.
• Shakespearean Names — “A simplified pronouncing guide for some of Shakespeare’s names,” with guidelines and spoken examples in an audio file accompanying a list of phonetic renderings. Part of eShakespeare, a project of the Denver Center Theatre Academy.
• SEE ALSO Names with Counterintuitive Pronunciations and Pronouncing Dictionary of the Supreme Court
Companies, Institutions, Nonprofit Entities, Etc.
• 20 Unpronounceable Tech Brands — and How to Say Them — Article in tech zine ITworld featuring descriptions of 20 technology companies and products.
• The ABC Book, A Pronunciation Guide — Phonetic pronunciations of selected brands, companies, and other commercial names, compiled by the National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped (NLS) for their volunteer readers.
• Pronouncing Dictionary of the Supreme Court of the United States — Alphabetical catalog of over 500 U.S. Supreme Court cases with audio clips and phonetic spellings, created by Yale law and linguistics students. NOTE: Because of the numerous individuals, institutions, and places involved, directly or peripherally, in these cases, this site may also serve as a more general resource for researching names in those categories.
• Coeur d’Alene Native Names Project — “Project with indigenous communities across globe to preserve indigenous place names [as well as] the language and history of those locations.”
• GeoBC: British Columbia Geographical Names Search — British Columbia government resource for place names and geographical features of that Canadian province. Though not all names include pronunciations yet, updating of that information is ongoing and the GeoBC office welcomes all email inquiries in the meantime.
• Great Land of Alaska: Pronunciation Guide — Brief collection of about 70 Alaska place-names, with phonetic renderings and audio (.wav). Caveat per site owner, Douglas Gates: the pronunciations do not attempt to reproduce actual native sounds but rather are those generally accepted by residents.
• How Do You Pronounce Theydon Bois? (London Place Names) — Blog post with phonetic spellings of a couple of dozen commonly mispronounced London place names. Includes additions in the many comments (use your browser’s Find function).
• MissPronouncer.com (Wisconsin) — “Your one-of-a-kind online resource for hearing audio pronunciations of cities, towns, villages, parks, lawmakers, Indian tribes, counties, forests, and miscellaneous names specific to Wisconsin.”
• Names in English with Counterintuitive Pronunciations (Wikipedia) — Alphabetical lists of “English personal and place names whose pronunciations are counterintuitive to their spelling, because the pronunciation does not correspond to the spelling, or because a better-known namesake has a markedly different pronunciation.” This resource is more extensive than it might seem, as several entries on the page point to additional long lists. NOTE: Hovering your cursor over IPA pronunciation symbols yields pop-ups with analogous sounds for each symbol.
• Northwest Pronunciation Guide — Lists of Northwestern U.S. and British Columbia place-name pronunciations (phonetically rendered), compiled by regional native Steven M. Sauke from local sources.
• Ohio Place & Feature Names — Pronunciations of cities, towns, and other prominent geographical features in the state of Ohio, created and updated by the Scripps School of Journalism at Ohio University.
• Place Names of Northern New Mexico — Browsable alphabetized Pronunciation Guide to place names included in the online Encyclopedia of Santa Fe & Northern New Mexico.
• Pronunciation Guide for National Forests and Grasslands — “Complete list of national forest and grassland names and their pronunciations listed by state,” from the U.S. Forest Service. Includes audio plus three phonetic pronunciations.
• Pronunciation of Place Names — Privately authored selection of mostly UK place-names with often inscrutably counterintuitive pronunciations — for example, Woolfardisworthy (Devon), pronounced “Woolsery,” and Belvoir (Leicestershire), pronounced “Beever.” Some Australian and a very few U.S. localities are also included.
• Texas Almanac Pronunciation Guide — Extensive list of Texas place-names (many of which have colloquial pronunciations) and their phonetic spellings, with guidelines described in first paragraph.
Religions, Faiths, & Spiritual Traditions
• How to Pronounce Chinese Zen Masters’ Names — List of over 220 Chinese Chan (Zen) Buddhist masters, linked to audio pronunciations. Useful for its stated purpose, as well as for examples of how Pinyin romanizations of Chinese words are supposed to sound.
• Pronouncing the Sanskrit Words and Names in the Sanghata — Sound files of pronunciations of terms and names from the seminal Buddhist scriptureĀrya Sanghāta Sūtra, many of which are common to the religion generally and to other Buddhist literature. The page also links to several pdfs dealing with various aspects of Sanskrit spellings and sounds.
• Pali Pronunciation — Audio pronunciations of over 625 terms from the Pāli Canon, the earliest known collection of Buddhist scripture and the holy text of the Theravada school of Buddhism.
• Voodoo Phrases & Alt Names — Glossary of names and phrases, with phonetic renderings, of deities, rituals, and terms relating to the “Mambo tradition” of New Orleans Voodoo (descended from Haitian Vodou, but emphasizing magical aspects).
Science, Technology, & Medicine
• Bacteria Pronunciation Guide — Audio pronunciation files for introductory courses at Hull York Medical School in the UK. Note that recordings reflect British pronunciations.
• Bacterial Pathogen Pronunciation Station — Large and well-organized collection of pronunciation sound files, created for students at A.T. Still University in Arizona. NOTE: Some of these American pronunciations are inconsistent with those found at the Intro to Taxonomy site also listed here.
• Botanical Latin Pronunciation Guide — Guides originally created for Horticulture magazine, providing “recommended pronunciations [in] accord with older references . . . , rather than with current popular usage, which is often inconsistent and unreliable.”
• Home and Garden Site: Pronunciation Guide — Phonetic guidelines for the botanical names of numerous common plants, provided by two master gardeners in Michigan.
• How Do You Pronounce IT? — List of phonetic spellings with MP3 clips for pronouncing 95 commonly mispronounced (or mysteriously pronounced) terms, abbreviations, and acronyms in the field of information technology.
• Introduction to Taxonomy: Bacteria Pronunciation Guide — Informational chart, part of an Ohio State University course, that includes sound files for select bacteria. Click on the X in the far right-hand column for a pronunciation. NOTE: Some of these American pronunciations are inconsistent with those found at the Bacterial Pathogen site also listed here.
• Medical Terminology Pronunciation “Jukebox” — Extensive click-and-listen pronunciation “jukebox” of medical terms, organized by body system and topical categories with alphabetized word lists within. Not term-searchable. From the Wisc-Online (Wisconsin Technical College System) digital library of resources. (If pronouncer’s Wisconsin accent is problematic, find and listen to a word you know how to pronounce and then extrapolate related words from that.)
• MediLexicon: Dictionary — Section of the extensive medical news, info, and resource site with phonetic spellings of thousands of medical terms via search or alphabetical listing. NOTE: When your search term is a compound (e.g., plantar fasciitis), pronunciations will appear only in each individual word-component’s entry (e.g., plantar and fasciitis, respectively).
• MedlinePlus: Medical Dictionary — Exhaustive dictionary of medical terminology, compiled by Merriam-Webster and made available on the National Institutes of Health’s highly regarded consumer information website. Includes phonetic transcriptions as well as audio pronunciations (many of which are unavailable on M-W’s own product sites).
• The Merck Manuals Online Medical Library: Pronunciations — Audio pronunciations of medical and pharmaceutical terms, created by the Merck pharmaceutical company as part of the free online publication of its authoritative Merck Manuals.
• How to Pronounce the Most Deceptive Gallery Names — From the magazine of online marketplace Artspace, a list of phonetic spellings of 73 major art galleries around the world.
• BBC: A Guide to Languages — The BBC’s archived collection of basic information about 20 world languages, providing for each a brief inventory of “key phrases” with written and audio pronunciations; a concise treatment of “the alphabet,” describing and demonstrating (via audio) similarities to and differences from English sounds; and a boxed list of “related links” to external language-learning sites.
• dict.cc: Multilingual Dictionary — Translation database compiled and checked by user-contributors and including audio recordings of words and selected phrases and sentences. Focus is on English and German, with each of those languages translated into 25 others, building an extensive work-in-progress database of European languages. Click on a language pair to access bilingual alphabetical word lists and a search box.
• FAMiliarization — Wide-ranging compendium of cultural and language learning aids for countries worldwide, sponsored by the Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center (DLIFLC). Access audio pronunciation files, romanized spellings, and any native transcriptions by searching, browsing language or country lists, or clicking the interactive site map. Unique and well-ordered Language Survival Kits offer Basic Language Guides, Pronunciation Guides, and collections of military, PR, and medical words and phrases.
• Forvo — Self-proclaimed (and probably accurately so) “largest pronunciation guide in the world,” with recorded pronunciations in over 200 languages. Users can browse words by Language or Category, or search the Forvo database. Registered users (no charge) may submit new words for pronunciation and offer their own pronunciations.
• ielanguages — Authoritative and highly useful/usable site featuring tutorials on 20 world languages, each including pronunciation guidance. Tutorials have been prepared by several different experts, so arrangement and content will vary. Some feature pronunciation guideline pages with excellent phonetic and English equivalency charts (no audio); others incorporate audio and sometimes video; and two (French and Spanish) are especially rich in pronunciation resources of all kinds.
• Language Guide — “A collaborative project to develop interactive, sound-integrated language learning resources,” with speech samples available in Dutch, German, Spanish, Mexican Spanish, Turkish, Arabic, Portuguese, Russian, Mandarin, Japanese, and Korean. Clicking a language yields categories, within which are image maps with rollover audio pronunciations of category-related words and pop-ups of each word written in its Latin alphabet equivalent.
• Larousse Dictionaries — Site offering free access to 21 dictionaries from the renowned French publisher, including 8 translation dictionaries to and from English. Word entries provide human-voiced audio pronunciations, as well as dozens of phrases and idioms that contain a given word.
• Omniglot — An “online encyclopedia of writing systems and languages” offering a wide range of language learning resources and tools, including many pronunciation tips and aids. (NOTE: Links not always highlighted.) Distinctive aspects include Language Exchange sites (shared learning and practice with native speakers), Articles (e.g., “Secrets of Speaking with a Genuine Accent“), a Celtic Languages guide, short Video Lessons for several languages, Online Radio Stations (for 100+ languages), and Site Search. For best overview, check out the Site Map and the A-Z Index of languages. Suggestion: Spend some time perusing this rich and diverse site so you’ll know what’s here when you need it.
• Pronounce It Right — Copious and eclectic audio collection of names and terms from many areas of culture and endeavor, and in over 30 languages. Access by search or by browsing Categories and Languages drop-down lists (lower right-hand corner box).
• pronunciationguide.info — Subtitled “A Guide for Classical Radio Announcers,” this site aims “to teach speakers of North American English how to pronounce [21 European] languages . . . with a respectable degree of confidence and correctness” by providing some simple but valuable phonetic guidelines and tips for each. An accompanying page, “The Big List of Names,” provides both phonetic spellings and audio clips of the names of individuals, ensembles, and works of classical music, grouped by language.
• UCLA Phonetics Lab Archive — Rich database containing authoritative audio recordings of individual words and sounds from over 200 languages, with corresponding word lists showing phonetic transcriptions and English equivalents. Especially valuable for audio samples of obscure languages or those with hard-to-locate audio files. Access by language (Language Database) or by individual word search.
• WikiTravel Phrasebooks — Foreign-language phrasebooks designed “so that an English-speaking traveller can ‘get by’ in an area where [a given] language is spoken.” Pronunciation Guide sections are most helpful, using analogous English-language sounds as models (rather than IPA transcriptions). Phrasebooks are “color coded according to their level of completion and overall quality.”
• SEE ALSO AlphaDictionary
SWAHILI / KISWAHILI
• KIKO (Kiswahili/Swahili) — An acronym for a phrase meaning “Kiswahili using the computer,” this site (sponsored by the African Studies Institute at the University of Georgia) provides guidelines for pronouncing Kiswahili (also widely known as Swahili), specifically on the page Matamshi ya Kiswahili (Kiswahili pronunciation). Further information and lessons, including vocabulary and video conversations with transcriptions are available through the Anza masamo (Enter course) link.
• How to Make the Sounds in Wolof — Introductory of three Phonetics pages that together provide concise yet thorough pronunciation guidance on the Wolof language, spoken primarily in Senegal, Mauritania, and the Gambia. While the Sounds page relies on IPA transcription, the Vowels and Consonants pages utilize recordings of sample sounds and words. The site’s creator, eminent Wolof scholar Dr. Richard Shawyer, has included links to other helpful resources on several pages.
• AKOYE (Yoruba) — An acronym for a phrase meaning “successful Yoruba learning on the computer,” this site (sponsored by the African Studies Institute at the University of Georgia) offers Yoruba pronunciation guidelines, most pointedly on the page Ìxcnupe Ède Yorùbá (Yorùbá pronunciation). Yoruba is a tonal language whose transcription may require reading and/or reproducing a special font that reflects tonal inflections. Access additional lessons, vocabulary, and video conversations via the bere eko (enter) link.
• A Guide to Pronouncing Chinese Names (Pinyin Transliteration) — Extensive description and phonetic examples of how to pronounce Chinese sounds that have been rendered into the Latin alphabet (i.e., romanized) in Pinyin, the present-day system for transcribing written Chinese for most Western readers. NOTE: This site does not distinguish tonal variants.
• Learn Cantonese — Introductory resource on Cantonese Chinese. Extensive vocabulary lists provide pronunciations in phonetic transcription and, sometimes, via sound files. Audio samples, indicated by Chinese characters with a (very light) beige background, occur most abundantly in the Basic Vocabulary section. No search function available.
• Mandarin Chinese-English Dictionary — Audio dictionary of Mandarin Chinese, with searches available in Chinese script (traditional or simplified) and in Pinyin transliteration, as well as English«Chinese translations. Click the speech bubble beside the large Chinese characters in results page to hear the pronunciation.
• Transliterating Chinese — Brief but very helpful clarification of the two major systems used to represent Chinese characters and words phonetically in English: the older Wade-Giles (e.g., Peking; Mao Tse-tung) and the newer, official Pinyin (Beijing; Mao Zedong). This page provides examples and guidelines for converting between the two systems and for pronouncing each.
• Brief Guide to Filipino Pronunciation — Concise guide to pronouncing Filipino (Pilipino), the official language of the Philippines, including basic sounds, accents and stress, and irregular pronunciations.
• Japanese Dictionary — Excellent multifaceted dictionary of the Japanese language, permitting searches using English words; Romaji, that is, Japanese words spelled using the Roman (Latin) alphabet; or either of the two main Japanese writing systems, Kanji and Kana. Results yield a table containing all these elements, plus a sound recording of the word.
lao & thai
• Thai Language / Lao Language — Introduction to pronunciation characteristics of these two related Southeast Asian languages, with thorough but clear discussions of both the phonetic and the tonal elements of each.
• Learning Sanskrit: Pronunciation 1 & Pronunciation 2 — From the extensive Sanskrit & Sánscrito website, resource pages offering sound files and descriptions for pronouncing Sanskrit letters (Pronunciation 1) and 73 Sanskrit words, names, and titles (Pronunciation 2). NOTE: In the latter page, the several sound files labeled “Invalid Source” can, in fact, be accessed by right-clicking on them for a shortcut menu, selecting Copy Audio URL, and pasting that URL (to an online MP3 file) directly into your browser’s address bar.
• Pronouncing Sanskrit — Two brief treatments of Sanskrit pronunciation for English speakers. A Rough Guide offers seven basic rules that cover “about 80% of pronouncing Sanskrit.” The Comprehensive Guide, only slightly longer, provides individual attention to the sounds of each vowel, consonant, and special combination.
• howjsay.com — “A free online Talking Dictionary of English Pronunciation,” produced by teacher-scholar Tom Bowyer. Howjsay offers an extensive database of audio clips using mostly Standard British English pronunciations, but also World English and American English variants, where useful (see details at Notes).
• Middle English Pronunciation — Pronunciation guide to Middle English (aka Chaucerian English), with clear and concise descriptions of the consonant and vowel sounds followed immediately by audio samples of words containing the sounds.
• SEE ALSO The Criyng and the Soun: Chaucer Audio Files
North American Cultures (non-English)
• Glossary of Gullah Words — Extensive word list in a table comprising a column of phonetically spelled Gullah creolized pronunciations of English words, the latter in a second, corresponding column. Part of the larger Gullah Language site included here under North American Cultures (non-English)|Gullah.
• Kreyòlab — Succinct discussion and demonstration of pronunciation features of Haitian Creole, together with tips on contextualizing various spellings. Site is “in progress,” so check back for updates.
• FirstVoices — Audio pronunciations via extensive word lists in 21 different Canadian indigenous languages. Access languages via map or drop-down menu, click “Learn Our Language” tab on the language page, then find words in browsable lists or by search.
• Guide to Pronunciations for B.C. First Nations (pdf) — List of some 275 tribal (First Nations) names in British Columbia, arranged alphabetically and offering phonetic pronunciations for each.
• Inuktitut Tusaalanga: Glossary — Alphabetical list and sound files of words and phrases from Inuktitut, the language spoken by most native Inuit people of the eastern Canadian Arctic. Inuktitut is best understood as “a spectrum of dialects that vary enormously from one end of the Arctic to the other,” and four of these dialects are available here via drop-down menu. This award-winning site also has a Pronunciation page, with phonetic guidelines and examples keyed to Glossary entries.
• Native Languages of the Americas — Alphabetized index of tribes and languages cataloging a massive database of nearly 800 North, Central, and South American native languages. Each entry’s informational page typically includes a pronunciation guide, vocabulary, grammar, cultural info, and internal and external links. The site’s many intersecting subpages can be confusing, but two subsections — languages by language family and selected links to other resources on Native American languages — may be especially helpful.
• A Guide to Pronunciation of Pennsylvania-Dutch Words — Brief phonetic guide to sounds in the language of the Amish people, provided by romance novelist Wanda Brunstetter.
• Hear Dutch Here — Dutch language learning website from Marco Schuffelen, featuring sound files in categories such as Dutch pronunciation and names (personal, geographical, etc.), as well as various tips (e.g., “Dutch Accent for The Stage“).
• French Pronunciation — Audio-supported resources covering various aspects of French pronunciation, from long-established info directory About.com. Among the the most useful for basic reference purposes are Beginning Pronunciation (an audio-linked pronunciation guide), the on-site Dictionary (2,500+ entries) and Dictionaries and Word Lists page, the French Rhythm article, and the discussion of ten Pronunciation Mistakes and Difficulties.
• A Guide to German Pronunciation — Descriptive text and charts, linked to extensive audio examples to provide practice with German pronunciation. Site offers standard pronunciation as well as some regional variations and loan-word (e.g., English, French) exceptions. NOTE: Right-click on sound files and open a second window to view text while listening.
• LEO Deutsch-English Dictionary — German-English searchable dictionary, with audio pronunciation clips (most human-voiced) and a related language forum.
• Guide to Greek Pronunciation Conventions — Concise, easy-to-use Greek alphabet chart with audio files reflecting the sounds for each letter in Erasmian, Attic, biblical (Koine), and modern Greek. The chart is item 2 on the page, with further links to helpful internal and external resources primarily under item 3.
• see also Greek (ancient)
irish & Irish Gaelic
• Beginner’s Guide to Irish Gaelic Pronunciation — Nonacademic guide, based on the Ulster dialect, intended as “a rule of thumb for people who are unfamiliar with Irish (e.g., most English-speaking people outside Ireland).”
• Irish Gaelic — Synthesized text-to-speech pronunciation system, developed by the Phonetics and Speech Laboratory of Trinity College, Dublin. Input or paste up to 2,000 characters of Irish Gaelic text to generate synthesized audio. NOTE: AudioEloquence has limited confidence in sythesized speech tools, however sophisticated. But in this and some other instances, more reliable sources may be lacking at present.
• Dizionario italiano multimediale e multilingue d’Ortografia e di Pronunzia — Searchable Italian pronouncing dictionary with both phonetic transcriptions and audio samples. Also includes many proper nouns.
• Russian Alphabet — Chart demonstrating pronunciation of Cyrillic letters through both phonetic spellings and audio samples.
SCOTS, scottish, & scottish Gaelic
• Shetland Dictionary: Pronunciation — Section of the browsable and searchable dictionary of words in the Shetland dialect of the islands at the northernmost point of Scotland, compiled by Shetland teacher and scholar John J. Graham.
• see also Dialect Map of Shetland
• American Heritage(R) Spanish Dictionary — Spanish-English searchable dictionary providing American English and Latin American Spanish audio pronunciations of some 70,000 entries.
• Study Spanish: Spanish Pronunciation — Language tutorial with extensive audio support, organized as a series of vowels, consonants, intonations, diphthongs, etc., with audio samples of representative words, phrases, and sentences.
• Introduction to Swedish: A guide to pronunciation — Chapter of a Swedish grammar written for international students, with excellent sound files and guides for pronouncing Swedish letters and letter combinations.
•SEE Turkish under Middle Eastern
• Welsh-English / English-Welsh On-line Dictionary — Searchable two-way translation resource that provides phonetically rendered pronunciations and some audio clips.
• Yiddish Dictionary Online — Yiddish dictionary searchable by English equivalent of Yiddish word, romanized spelling of Yiddish word, or Yiddish word typed in Hebrew alphabet. Results provide basic phonetic spellings.
• Yiddish Glossary — Informal compilation by Yiddish-character performer, covering many common words and phrases, all with phonetic transcriptions and many with audio samples.
• SEE ALSO Yiddish Words
• Ancient Greek Tutorials — U of C, Berkeley, instruction modules designed to assist textbook-based learning and focusing on ancient Greek pronunciation and accentuation features. A Pronunciation Guide provides clickable Greek letters, sounds, and breathing notations linked to sound files.
• see also Greek under European (non-English)
• Ecclesiastical Latin — Guidelines on “the pronunciation and usages of Latin by the Catholic Church [as distinct] in some respects . . . from the Latin spoken by Caesar, Seneca and Cicero, called Classical Latin.”
• How to Pronounce Latin — Page that describes pronunciation features of Ecclesiastical Latin — spoken since the 3rd century AD, in contrast to supposed pre-3rd-century Classical pronunciation.
• Latin Links & Resources — Collection of ecclesiastical Latin links compiled by Father Gary Coulter and extending from Latin courses and discussion groups to Latin dictionaries to additional collections of Latin language links.
• Latin Pronunciation Demystified (pdf) — Brief but highly instructive document on the four “rival” Latin pronunciation schemes, written by Michael A Covington, Ph.D., widely cited scholar in linguistics and computer engineering.
• Latin Pronunciation Files for Choirs — MP3 files of clearly articulated Latin pronunciation accompanying the texts (typically every 2-6 lines) of five common Cathoic choral works: Ordinary (or Order) of the Mass, Requiem, Stabat Mater, Te Deum, and Magnificat.
• Wheelock’s Latin: Pronunciation Audio Files — Sound and word pronunciations, ancillary to the preeminent introductory Latin textbook Wheelock’s Latin. Sound files, with phonetic transcription and translation, are accessed per chapter, and no search function exists.
NOTE: Some sites reflect the fact that Arabic is written and read from right-to-left.
• ArabDict.com — Dictionary offering definitions and audio pronunciations in English-Arabic/Arabic-English, as well as from and to Arabic and other (largely European) languages. Searchable in Latin or Arabic script.
• Islamic Dictionary — Site providing searches via “words [and phrases] written using Latin characters but [that] are Islamic in origin,” usually originating in Arabic. Entries generally comprise audio pronunciations, accessed via red audio icons, as well as Arabic script renderings, which may enable further searches on sites that recognize Arabic script (e.g., forvo.com). (NOTE: Not IE-friendly; recommend using Firefox or Google Chrome.)
• English-Arabic Phonetic Dictionary — Translation process that provides English-to-Arabic translation, including both Latin and Arabic script.
• Bahá’í Glossary — Collection of words and phrases common in the Bahá’í faith, containing Arabic and Persian vocabulary in audio format with accompanying definitions.
• Hebrew - Alphabet (Aleph-Beth) Transliteration and Pronunciation — A compact but useful one-page primer in Hebrew pronunciation; a “rough guide . . . sufficient to help understand the principles [of Hebrew grammar and the alphabet] and to follow the transliterations of different terms and understand how to use them.”
• Hebrew for Christians: Glossary — A fairly extensive database of Hebrew and some Yiddish words with phonetic renderings. Entries are English transliterations, rather than Hebrew script, and the main Glossary page offers a brief pronunciation guide.
• Learn Hebrew Phrases with Audio — Straightforward site designed to teach basic, useful Hebrew by way of 54 topics with 1,211 Hebrew phrases and sentences, in both Hebrew script and transliterations, with accompanying human-voiced audio. Most effectively used in conjunction with phonetic pronunciation guides such as the two preceding Hebrew sites.
• Turkish Pronunciation Guide — Brief and easy-to-use key to pronouncing letters and letter combinations in the Turkish language (which is written in the Latin alphabet).
• 100 Māori words every New Zealander should know & A Māori word a day (365 words & phrases) — Two related pages from the Maori Language Week section of the New Zealand History site, providing some 500 words in te reo Māori (“the Māori language”). At the bottom of the “100 Māori words” page are some simple but important Notes on Pronunciation, together with a few contextual guidelines. The “Māori word a day” page offers common categories of expression.
• Useful Tahitian Words and Phrases — Basic pronunciation guide to the sounds of Tahitian vowels and consonants, with phonetic spellings of common words and expressions. NOTE: Tahitian is closely related to Maori, about which more can be learned and heard in the entry above.
• AccentHelp — Site offering free samples of its 35 for-purchase accent and dialect-learning recordings for actors, including British, American, and World varieties. The brief samples provide significant models and one or two tips sufficient to be useful to some performers. NOTE: AE neither endorses nor opposes purchase of this or any other site’s products.
• Global Recordings Network — Vast, well-organized, and easily accessible database of audio samples of 6,000+ languages, many with written scripts available, created by Christian evangelist group GRN. Exceptionally valuable for learning rhythms and other speech features of both obscure and major world languages.
• How to Do an Accent — Thirty-five video guides on accents and accent features ranging from Pittsburgh to Persia, presented by actor and voice/speech coach Andrea Caban on HowCast.com. Particularly useful in focusing not just on the listening to the sounds themselves but on engaging the muscles of articulation and other means of generating key sounds in each accent and dialect.
• How To Do A(n) _____ Accent — Series of 3-minute video mini-courses on accents from British actor and dialect coach Gareth Jameson, most from regions of current and former Commonwealth countries (Welsh, Cockney, South African) and a few from farther afield (German, New York, Russian, American Southern). Good resource for quick-and-dirty accent lessons focusing on salient pronunciation features.
• Internet Resources for Voice and Speech Professionals: Dialects & Accents — Section within the Internet Resources of VASTA (Voice and Speech Trainers Association) that lists numerous sites (most with audio samples) focused on varieties of English speech worldwide. In addition to broad national and regional surveys, the list includes sites dedicated to Scots, Irish, and Mexican American speakers.
• Scripture Earth Resources — Evangelical Christian site comprising a searchable and browsable index of 600 languages (from 78 countries), many of which link to a page offering downloadable PDFs and MP3s of New Testament books (or chapters within them). Some pages link instead or in addition to a sister site offering either both of these options (Global Recordings Network; see above) or a combined reading-and-listening platform (Bible.is).
• StoryCorps — Ongoing oral history archive of more than 45,000 interviews with Americans from all walks of life. Browse the bilingual collection by category or search by keyword (e.g., region or states).
• SEE ALSO Omniglot
• IDEA (International Dialects of English Archives) — “Online archive of primary-source dialect and accent recordings for the performing arts” created by author-educator Paul Meier. “All recordings are in English, are of native speakers, and include both English language dialects and English spoken in the accents of other languages.” The site’s extensive Special Collections cover (with audio) topics such as Speech and Voice Disorders and General [or Standard] English.
• Sounds of New Zealand English — Recordings of a native English-speaking New Zealander voicing selected words to demonstrate common pronunciation features.
• Speech Accent Archive — Vast set of recordings of “speech accents from a variety of language backgrounds. Native and non-native speakers of English all read the same English paragraph,” with recordings accompanied by phonetic transcription. Multiple samples represent each language, varying by gender, age, region, and fluency. Browse by speaker or region, or use advanced search.
• Vincent Voice Library — Collection of 40,000+ hours of English-language speeches and broadcasts by over 100,000 world leaders, public figures, broadcast announcers, and private citizens around the world. Database records date from 1888 to the present and are searchable by keyword (e.g., event or place), name, or year.
• Accents & Dialects — Section of the British Library’s “Sounds” collections, with audio from five major historical and sociolinguistic resources, available in their entirety or by browsing by county, date, or map.
• Sounds Familiar? — Compilation of 71 sound recordings and over 600 short audio clips from two British Library Sound Archive collections: the Survey of English Dialects and the Millennium Memory Bank. Special sections include in-depth looks at Received Pronunciation (regionally neutral accent), Geordie dialect (of the inhabitants of Newcastle-upon-Tyne), and Minority Ethnic English.
• A Tour of Accents — In a single, unedited take, “professional accent and dialect coach Andrew Jack seamlessly switches between the various accents that are scattered across the UK, demonstrating the subtle distinctions between different varieties of English.”
• The Voices Recordings — BBC’s program archive of voice samples from regions across the UK. Of the 300 recorded conversations (involving 1,201 people), “250 are in English, 31 are in Scots, 10 are in Welsh, six in Scots Gaelic, three in Irish, three in Ulster Scots, and one each in Manx and Guernsey French.” Access via search or interactive map.
• Meet Mama Lola (Louisiana: Haitian American) — Video of New Orleans Voodoo high priestess Mama Lola, an excellent illustration of Haitian-accented English.
• North American English Dialects, Based on Pronunciation Patterns — Massively detailed interactive map charting American English dialects throughout the continent. Clicking on most cities or towns yields a table of audio and video samples of representative native speakers. Many map annotations and insets, as well as supplemental materials, are also helpful.
• Pittsburgh Speech & Society — Site created by University of Pittsburgh linguists, devoted to the city’s distinctive dialect and including many recorded samples and described pronunciation features.
• Tejano Voices — Oral history project site containing more than 175 English-language recordings of Mexican Americans from throughout the state of Texas.
• SEE ALSO American Languages
North American Cultures (non-English)
• American Languages: Our Nation’s Many Voices Online — The American Languages project, begun in 2003, aims “to digitize, interpret, and make accessible audio recordings documenting linguistic diversity in the United States.” To date, some 60 hours of audio have been collected, consisting largely of interviews with speakers of German-American and American English dialects from various states.
• Gullah Language: Hear-and-Read Gullah — Informal phonetic renderings of three texts (the Lord’s Prayer, the 23rd Psalm, and M.L. King, Jr.’s “I Have a Dream”), with audio files of each in the English-based, creolized Gullah language originated by slaves in South Carolina, Georgia, and the coastal Sea Islands.
• Gullah Tales — Professional storyteller Aunt Pearlie Sue (the creation of Anita Singleton-Prather, a native of the Sea Islands in Beaufort County, South Carolina) tells six folk and fairy tales in both English- and Gullah-language versions, with basic English-language text accompanying simple animations. In addition, a teaching activity presents 15 English words that, when clicked, produce their spoken and transcribed Gullah equivalents.
• SEE Hear Dutch Here
• How to Fake a French Accent — Pointers on speaking English with a French inflection, directed at English-speaking Americans and offered by the long-time Web resource About.com. The content more reliable than the cheesy title implies.
• Dialect Map of Shetland — Clickable map of the Shetland Islands, northernmost area of Scotland and, indeed, the UK, with sound files of individuals representing 18 island localities.
• Scots Language Centre — Site dedicated to promoting the Scots language, featuring a wide variety of audio samples of ten major Scots regional dialects.
• SEE ALSO The Voices Recordings
• Yiddish Words: An Audible Glossary of Familiar Terms — Via NPR, the Yiddish Radio Project presents David Rogow and Pearl Sapoznik in character dialogues designed to define and demonstrate nine Yiddish words. Helpful for picking up the rhythms of Yiddish speech. (Requires RealPlayer)
Dictionaries & Translators (human-voiced)
• AlphaDictionary — Impressive database of dictionaries and glossaries for some 300 world languages. Clicking on a country from the list yields linked dictionaries and language resources that, in turn, produce rollover annotations useful in sorting and selection.
• Dictionary.com — Extensive reference work based on Random House Dictionary and including results from several other major dictionaries (e.g., Collins, as World English Dictionary). Features pronunciation sound files as well as both IPA and less complex phonetic spellings.
• Memidex — Aggregator of English-languagedictionaries and thesauri that features countless British and American audio pronunciations directly available from Memidex search results (click icon beside entry title to go to pronunciation category).
• Merriam-Webster — Definitive pronunciation resource for audiobook publishers, with human-voiced audio pronunciations as well as phonetic transcriptions.
• Google Translate — Simple to–from translation tool for 76 languages, from the familiar search engine company.
• Interactive IPA Sounds — Interactive charts featuring audio samples that accompany written labels and descriptions of each of the sounds in the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA), from eminent dialect coach Paul Meier.
Search Tools & Directories
• DMOZ — “largest, most comprehensive human-edited directory of the Web,” created and maintained by volunteer editors (though owned by AOL since the late 1990s). Formerly known as the Open Directory Project, DMOZ is the only major directory that is 100% free and, in fact, “powers the core directory services for [such] search engines and portals [as] Netscape, AOL, Google, Lycos, . . . and hundreds of others.” It can be a good starting place for research, but remember that as a directory it deals in categories rather than details.
• Call an ethnic restaurant.
• Call embassies, consulates, or national airlines. (Embassy.org has a page for each embassy in Washington, D.C., and many pages have links to consular and other offices throughout the U.S.)
• Call public offices or libraries in a region for pronunciation of place-names and prominent local persons. City and county non-emergency phone centers can be very helpful. Operators or dispatchers are usually happy to answer your question — and answer it briefly! Also, they’re available 24/7.
• Search Google or other search engines using the following format: word + pronounce
• Calling a business phone number that appears in web search results will usually yield a person, answering machine, or voicemail that provides the correct pronunciation of the personal or company name you seek.
• Working late? Call bars or taverns for local place-name pronunciations (or for entertainment).
• Search for < Oral History + state or region > to find a variety of audio interviews of regional speakers, many from decades-old archives. Notable examples include the Montana Memory Project, the University of Alabama at Birmingham Oral History Collection, and the University of Southern Mississippi Oral History Digital Collection.
• Search YouTube or Google Videos. Pronunciations for difficult-to-locate place-names can often be found in local news story results from a search such as < _____ Avenue accident > or < _____ School news at 5 >. For a person’s name, try < _____ speech > or < _____ award > and similar expressions.
• Search NPR for audio of relevant interviews to get pronunciations. [NOTE: Don’t assume interviewer/announcer pronunciations are authoritative, as they sometimes definitely are not.]
• Search BBC as for NPR above.
• Search Wikipedia for general information (sometimes pronunciations), BUT an article’s “External Sites” list is likely to provide more useful and authoritative resources.
• Look for forums associated with cultural or language sites — even if the sites themselves haven’t provided answers, their followers tend to respond quite willingly and reliably.
• How to Use AudioEloquence •
— AE is divided into broad descriptive categories for clarity and ease of use. The categories are seldom mutually exclusive, however. So if you don’t find what you need under what seems the most likely category, think creatively and explore links and subject coverage within other categories that may be broader or related.
— Be aware of not only what AE contains, but also what it does NOT contain. Not all Web resources are created equal, so we take time to explore carefully all sites we and other AE users discover. Those that make the cut are ones we feel are accurate and authoritative and, as secondary criteria, are easily navigable and provide audio. Feel free to send a note if you’re wondering why a site isn’t on this list. If we’ve rejected a site for inclusion, we’ll be happy to tell you why!
— Take time to read AE’s annotations, a few each day, so that you can develop a fuller sense of the range of topics and subtopics covered by these resources. Though we’ve done our best to organize, cross-reference, and name entries to make using AE intuitive and systematic, the annotations can add substantial value to your ability to best use these resources.
— Use your browser’s Find function to search for specific words or topics/languages within annotations on the AE page.