pronunciation guide in English

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Examples are tagged with an English dialect. Any example that is not tagged is considered "General American" (GA).

Tags currently used:

Phonology for all dialects

Vowels (preferred)

lojban IPA Names Examples
a [a] Open front unrounded vowel a in hat (WaE)
e [ɛ] Open-mid front unrounded vowel e in bed, dress (GA)
i [i] Close front unrounded vowel ee in free, beam (GA)
o [o] Close-mid back rounded vowel aw in yawn (AuE), o in go (ScE)
u [u] Close back rounded vowel oo in boot, true (GA)
y [ə] Mid-central vowel a in above

Vowels (allowed)

lojban IPA Names Examples Notes
a [ɑ] Open back unrounded vowel a in father (GA)
e [e] Close-mid front unrounded vowel ay in play (ScE, not GA) Be careful not to confuse with the diphthong ei!
o [ɔ] Open-mid back rounded vowel o in not (AuE, not GA)


A diphthong is a vowel sound that consists of two elements: a short vowel sound and a glide. A labial (IPA [w]) or palatal (IPA [j]) glide either precedes (an on-glide) or follows (an off-glide) the main vowel. Diphthongs always constitute a single syllable.

lojban IPA Examples
ai [aj] high, Taipei, prize (GA)
ei [ɛj] weigh, Taipei
oi [oj] boy
au [aw] cow
ia [ja] yard
ie [jɛ] yell
ii [ji] ye
io [jo] yogurt
iu [ju] beauty
ua [wa]


ue [wɛ] well
ui [wi] weak
uo [wo] woe
uu [wu] woo
iy [jə] million
uy [wə] was (unstressed)


lojban IPA Names Examples
c [ʃ] Voiceless palato-alveolar sibilant sh in shape
j [ʒ] Voiced palato-alveolar sibilant s in measure, j in déjà vu
s [s] Voiceless alveolar sibilant s in soon
z [z] Voiced alveolar sibilant z in zinc


lojban IPA Names Examples
f [f] Voiceless labiodental fricative f in fall
v [v] Voiced labiodental fricative v in voice
x [x] Voiceless velar fricative ch in loch (ScE)
' [h] Voiceless glottal fricative h in hose


lojban IPA Names Examples
dj [dʒ] Voiced palato-alveolar affricate j in joke
tc [tʃ] Voiceless palato-alveolar affricate ch in chat
dz [ʣ] Voiced alveolar affricate ds in pads
ts [ʦ] Voiceless alveolar affricate ts in cats


lojban IPA Examples
r [r], [ɹ], [ɾ], [ʀ], [r̩], [ɹ̩], [ɾ̩], [ʀ̩] rock


lojban IPA Examples
n [n], [n̩], [ŋ̍], [ŋ̩] nose
m [m], [m̩] move


lojban IPA Examples
l [l], [l̩] l in lake


lojban IPA Examples
b [b] bottle
d [d]


g [g] goose
k [k] keen
p [p] powder
t [t] time

Phonology for GA speakers

lojban IPA Examples
' [h] h in ham
. [ʔ] the catch in your throat that sometimes occurs prior to the beginning of a word (and sometimes a syllable) which starts with a vowel.

In some kinds of American English, it is used between vowels instead of “t” : “bottle” [boʔl̩].

The English interjection “uh-oh!” almost always has it between the syllables.

a [ɑ] a in father
b [b] b in bottle
c [ʃ] sh in shape
d [d] d in dance
e [ɛ] e in dress
f [f] f in fall
g [g] g in goose
i [i] ea in beam
j [ʒ] s in measure, j in déjà vu
k [k] k in keen
l [l] l in lake
m [m] m in move
n [n] n in nose
o [o] au as in the French « haute » or o in the Spanish “como”. No exact GA equivalent
p [p] p in powder
r [ɹ], [r̩] r in right, r in bird
s [s] s in soon
t [t] t in time
u [u] ou as in the French « boule » or u in the German „Stuhl“. No exact GA equivalent
v [v] v in voice
x [x] ch in the German „Ach-Laut“
y [ə] totally relaxed sound made with the tongue in the middle of the mouth
z [z] z in zoo


lojban IPA Examples
ai [aj] i in bride
ei [ɛj] ay in stay
oi [ɔj] oy in boy
au [aw] ow in now
ia [jɑ] ya in yard
ie [jɛ] ye in yes
ii [ji]
io [jo]
iu [ju]
ua [wa]
ue [wɛ]
ui [wi]
uo [wo]
uu [wu]
iy [jə]
uy [wə]

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