Esperanto Pronounciation : Esperanta Prononco

Esperanto Pronounciation : Esperanta Prononco

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Introduction: Enkonduko

Esperanto is very easy to pronounce. It is purely phonetic. There are no silent letters. It is also easy to transcribe. You know exactly how to spell a word, even if you don’t know the word, just from hearing it. Every sound can come from only one possible letter. You might quibble on that, since, in theory, a ts sound could be the letter c or the combination ts. However, in all the Esperanto words I am familiar with, the ts sound is always a letter c.

Oddly non-native speakers of English find it easier to understand other non-native speakers speaking English, even when they have completely different accents. This is because non-native speakers tend to speak more clearly, even if warped in a consistent way than native speakers who tend to slur. This fact bodes well for Esperanto.

When I attended my first Esperanto conference, I discovered that people spoke Esperanto with regional accents, much the way English is spoken in different ways in different parts of the world. Even though there is a supposedly neutral Esperanto accent, most people betray their country of origin in the way they pronounce. You just have to get used to it. It would have taken me many weeks to learn the dozens of accents I heard at that conference.

Here is a sampling of three accents. I would be happy to include some more if you have the patience to record the necessary sound files and email them to me. In a pinch, you could just record the words on a cassette tape and mail that to me.

The sound files are MP3 format. You can play them with WinAmp, Windows Media Player, QuickTime… plug-in. They are just like MP3 music files you download and play on an iPod.

Esperanto Pronounciation : Esperanta Prononco
Sound How Pronounced Sample Esperanto Word North Western American Accent
mp3male
Canadian Accent
mp3male
South Eastern American Accent
mp3 female
English Meaning
a like a as in father pala American flag Canadian flag American flag pale
    sana American flag Canadian flag American flag healthy
b like b as in bath bano American flag Canadian flag American flag bath
    rabo American flag Canadian flag American flag robbery
c like ts as in tsar laca American flag Canadian flag American flag tired
    caro American flag Canadian flag American flag tsar
cx / ĉ as ch as in chisel acxa / aĉa American flag Canadian flag American flag rotten, despicable
    cxamo / ĉamo American flag Canadian flag American flag chamois
d like d as in dog dato American flag Canadian flag American flag date
    ada American flag Canadian flag American flag ongoing
e like e as in get de American flag Canadian flag American flag of, from
    pale American flag Canadian flag American flag palely
f like f as in fish pafi American flag Canadian flag American flag to shoot
    felo American flag Canadian flag American flag fur
g like g as in gone agi American flag Canadian flag American flag to act
    gemo American flag Canadian flag American flag a gem
gx / ĝ like j as in John agxo / aĝo American flag Canadian flag American flag age (of a person)
    gxemi / ĝemi American flag Canadian flag American flag to groan
h like h as in hello halo American flag Canadian flag American flag hall (large room)
    homo American flag Canadian flag American flag person, human being
hx / ĥ like ch as in Scottish loch hxoro / ĥoro American flag Canadian flag American flag chorus, choir
    ehxo / eĥo American flag Canadian flag American flag echo
i i as in machine fina American flag Canadian flag American flag final
    ido American flag Canadian flag American flag offspring
j like y as in yes jono American flag Canadian flag American flag ion
    ejo American flag Canadian flag American flag place (for something)
jx / ĵ zh like s as in measure jxus / ĵus American flag Canadian flag American flag just (in the immediate past)
    ajxo / aĵo American flag Canadian flag American flag thing, object
k like k as in ketchup kelo American flag Canadian flag American flag cellar
    ekbrili American flag Canadian flag American flag to begin to shine
l like l as in leaf lumo American flag Canadian flag American flag light
    rolo American flag Canadian flag American flag rôle
m like m as in more muso American flag Canadian flag American flag mouse
    ema American flag Canadian flag American flag having a tendency toward
n like n as in never nazo American flag Canadian flag American flag nose
    dankon American flag Canadian flag American flag thanks
o like o as in forty, not o as in code, not o as in got. oro American flag Canadian flag American flag gold
    povas American flag Canadian flag American flag can (am, is, are able)
p like p as in pen porko American flag Canadian flag American flag pig
    kapo American flag Canadian flag American flag head
r Italian trilled r, distinctly pronounced. ruza American flag Canadian flag American flag cunning
    moro American flag Canadian flag American flag (a) moral
s s as in sit sidi American flag Canadian flag American flag to sit
    aso American flag Canadian flag American flag (an) ace (in a deck of cards)
sx / ŝ like sh as in ship sxultro / ŝultro American flag Canadian flag American flag shoulder
    masxo / maŝo American flag Canadian flag American flag noose
t like t as in terror temi American flag Canadian flag American flag to have as a subject, topic
    kato American flag Canadian flag American flag cat
u like oo in moon utero American flag Canadian flag American flag womb
    multaj American flag Canadian flag American flag many
ux / ŭ like w as in how hodiaux / hodiaŭ American flag Canadian flag American flag today
    Euxropo / Eŭropo American flag Canadian flag American flag Europe
v like v as in very vazo American flag Canadian flag American flag vase
    lavi American flag Canadian flag American flag to wash
z like z as in zone zomi American flag Canadian flag American flag to zoom (in)
    frazo American flag Canadian flag American flag sentence
aj like the i as in bite bonaj American flag Canadian flag American flag good (plural)
ej like the a as in mate vejno American flag Canadian flag American flag vein
oj like the oy as in royal bojkoti American flag Canadian flag American flag to boycott
uj like ui as in ruinous prujno American flag Canadian flag American flag rime ice
aux / aŭ like ow as in how morgaux / morgaŭ American flag Canadian flag American flag tomorrow
eux / eŭ no English equivalent, a bit like ow in how or ow in slow. neuxtrala / neŭtrala American flag Canadian flag American flag neutral

Sample Paragraph : Specimena Pargrafo

Be patient. The sound file for the entire paragraph must download before you hear anything. Click the corresponding flag. Por ni esperantistoj nacianeco estas ne absoluta. Gxi signifas sole malsamon de lingvo, kutimo, kulturo, hauxtkoloro kaj tiel plu. Ni rigardas nin kiel gefratojn de unu granda familio homaro. Ni tion ne teorias, sed sentas. Ekstere ni estas ligitaj de unu sama lingvo, kaj interne de unu sama sento. Ni ankaux amegas nian propran patrion. Tamen tiu cxi amo ne estas tia, kia ne povas kunstari kun amo kaj estimo al aliaj nacioj. ~ Verda Majo (Hasegawa Teru) from En Cxinio Batalanta United Nations flagmale American flagmale Canadian flagmale American flagfemale For us Esperantists nationality is not absolute. It means only a difference of language, custom, culture, skin color and so forth. We look at ourselves as brothers in one great family mankind. For us this is not a theory but a feeling. Externally we are linked by the same language, and internally by the same feeling. We also love our own country. But this love is not such as cannot stand together with love and respect for other nations.

The Speakers : La Parolantoj

United Nations flagmale American flagmale Canadian flagmale American flagfemale
The International speaker Alan Cranshawemail Alan Cranshaw  of Montréal Canada doing his best at a neutral accent. A neutral accent sounds somewhat Spanish. He has one year experience. The recordings are *.mp3 files sampled at 128K. The male American speaker is the late Don Harwlow (born: 1942-07-08 died: 2008-01-27 at age: 65) from Oregon. He was an experienced speaker, and past president of the Esperanto League for North America. His recordings were originally *.au files sampled at 8 kHz — hence the relatively poor quality, particularly in sibilant (s) sounds (frequencies above 4 kHz will be garbled). The *.au files have been converted to MP3 format for consistency with the other sounds. The Canadian speaker is Roedy Green  email feedback to Roedy Green or Canadian Mind Products from British Columbia, a complete novice. The recordings are *.mp3 files sampled at 64K. You can hear how difficult the trilled Esperanto r is for Canadian speakers. You might also notice wobbling vowels, particularly o and e improperly pronounced differently in different contexts. A Canadian tends to slur and soften sounds. The female American speaker is Geneva Hagenemail Geneva Hagen  from Alabama. The recordings are *.mp3 files sampled at 64K. You can hear how difficult the Esperanto trilled r is for American speakers.

The John C. Wells Pronunciation Recordings

The definitive Esperanto pronunciation would be professor John C. Wells (born: 1939-03-11 age: 75) and his 45 RPM (Revolutions Per Minute) phonograph record that came out in the 70s. Unfortunately my copy along with any equipment that could play it, long ago disappeared. He has since made a cassette €4.50 EUR and a CD €3.00 EUR Unfortunately the online version of it has been withdrawn.


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