Pronunciation Guide

Example of use in Sepedi placed in brackets.

a - as a in father (nama)
b - as b in bat (bana)
d - like d in do (madi)
e - as e in we (pele)
f - as f in farm (fana)
g - as ch in loch (gaya)
h - as h in ham (hema)
i - as i in is (thipa)
j - as j in job (sejo)
k - as c in cook (phoka)
- c in cook followed by ch in loch - guttaral sound (kgano)
- as k in kindle (khudu)
l - as l in lull (molala)
m - as m in mum (meetse)
mpš - mp in limp followed by sh in shine (mpša) [mp+s with an inverted circumflex+a]
my - similar to first part of the word miaow (go-myemyela)
n - as n in now (namane)
ng - as ng in linger (ngaka)
ny - similar to ny in Kenya (monyadi)
o - as a in all (noko)
p - as p in pull (pula)
ph - as p in pull (phala)
r - as r in rope (lerapo)
- as s in say (mosese)
- as sh in shine (lešata) [s with an inverted circumflex]
- as t in pot (tau)
th - as t in till (thipa)
tl - as tl in turtle (tladi)
- as ch in check (letšatši)
tlh - as tl in turtle (tlhako)
ts - as ts in sits (motse)
tsh - as ch in cheese, but with a more forceful puff of air (tshipi)
tšh - as ch in cheese (tshemo)
u - as u in pull (kutu)
w - as w in well (wena)
y - as y in yearn (yola) : Northern Sotho

© J. Olivier (2009)