…101 Devnagari Script Common Vowels A : Sound of ‘u’ in up or Sound of ‘a’ in are; not as sound of ‘a’ in add AA: Sound of ‘a’ in are E : Sound of ‘e’ in elephant EE : Sound of ‘ee’ in Cheese (Long e sound) I : Sound of ‘i’ in it O: Sound of ‘o’ in go; not as Sound of ‘o’ in of OO: Sound of ‘oo’ in food (Long u sound) U: Sound of ‘u’ in Put AI : Sound of ‘ei’ in Eikman Au : Sound of ‘ow’ in Cow or Sound of ‘ou’ in out when pronounced as a single syllable Most of the Indian languages have at least 12 common vowels. Most of them don’t have sound of A as in Add or sound of O as in Odd. Vowel pairs • • • • • Ai: is pronounced as quick like Eikman – Laila Aa: is pronounced as sound of ‘a’ in are Ee : cheese - Jeevan, Deepak, Rajeev Oo : noon – Pooja, Krishnamoorthy Au : quick aoo like saying cow in one syllable. – Gautam, Gaurav Consonents Most of the Indian languages have more that 34 consonants.. Bh : aspirated B - ABHOY, BHIDE Ch : as in “Churn” - SACH D : as in “dumb” or as in “the” In most Indian first names, when you see letter “D” pronounce it as “th”– DEEPAK; DEVESH D is pronounced as in “dumb” in some last names – BHIDE Dh : aspirated the or aspirated “D” – BUDDHA, GANDHI Dny : th in the + N + Y, pronounced as one syllable - DNYANADA Gh : as in ghost - GHOSH Kh : as in Khaki – REKHA Ph : as in graph T : as in tub or unaspirated T In most first names T is pronounced as soft T (touch tip of tongue to the back of upper teeth) – MANGAT, ADEETEE T is pronounced as in tub in some last names – PATEL Sr : S in Sun + R in run - SRI Sh : as in shut – SHAH, SHREYA Th : as in path or aspirated “T” - SANTHOSH, MARATHE Tr : unaspirated T + R – TRISHA, MANTRA Alphasyllabary • Look for consonants and vowels. Consonant–vowel sequences are written as a unit. If an Indian name is broken at the vowels and then sounded it out, a person will be able to guess the pronunciation. Kri-shna-moo-rthy Bhi-de Dnya-na-da Ko-chu-mme-n Sa-ra-va-na-ku-ma-r Cheat Sheet A up/arm B bun F fur G gum K karate C D the/dumb E elk H hut I ink J junk L lung M mum N numb O open P Q R S T pun quality rug Sun U V, W X Y Z put wait flux yes lazy No corresponding vowel sound turn/tamale Cheat Sheet continued… D in first name, Don’t be dumb, just pronounce them T in first name, have Tamale and not hot tea. G in a name, think of a game Th don’t go there, follow the path V or W wait and don’t ride in a Van Y Yes we did it!