VOWELS

STRESSED AND UNSTRESSES SYLLABLES: In multi-syllable words, the syllables which are underlined are stressed (accented) in pronunciation. Keep in mind that as a general rule most Irish words are pronounced with the stress on the first syllable with any remaining syllables being unstressed.

Short Vowels

Symbol Used Here

Irish Examples
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Nearest English Equivalent

a

bean, mac

bat

e

ceist, te

set

i

duine, im

sit

o

obair, seo

son

u

dubh, tiubh

book

Long Vowels

Symbol Used Here

Irish Examples
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Nearest English Equivalent

a

ard, tá

far

e

mé, tae

i

buí, naoi

me

o

ceol, mór

more

u

siúl, tú

who

The Neutral Vowel

Symbol Used Here

Irish Examples
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Nearest English Equivalent

mála, míle

about

Dipthongs

Symbol 

Used 

Here

Irish Examples
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Nearest English Equivalent

ai

radharc

I, eye

au

leabhar

cow

bia, pian

pianist

fuar, suas

fluent

Broad Consonants

Symbol 

Used 

Here

Irish Examples
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Nearest English Equivalent

b

bán, buí

-

d

-

f

faoin

-

g

Gaeilge

fog

h

hata, thit

hat

k

cad

cot

l

lón, mála

mill

m

maoin, mór

-

n

anam, naoi

-

p

paca

-

r

fuar

-

s

cás

-

t

tacht

-

v

vóta

wore

w

wigwam

wigwam

x

loch

German “Bach”

z

-

longa

long

dhá

Spanish “Agua”

d´z´

jab

job

Slender Consonants

Symbol 

Used 

Here

Irish Examples
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Nearest English Equivalent

b

bí, beo

be, beauty

d

deo

-

f

fíon, fiú

feet, few

g

gé, Gaeilge

gay, egg

k

cé, cead

key, came

l

leon, míle

live

m

maoin, mór

may, me

n

ainm, ní

canyon

p

peaca

piece

r

fuair

-

s

cáis

she

t

tacht

-

v

bhí

very

x

cheol

Hugh, German “Ich”

z

xileafón

pleasure

loingeas

sing

dhíol

yes

Daltaí na Gaeilge