A B C D E F G H I J K L M
N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
a e i o u
b c d f g h j k l m
n p q r s t v w x y z
B T J X KH D R S SH
DH C G F Q K L M N W H Y
B T J X KH D R S SH DH C
G F Q K L M N W H Y
a e i o u
aa ee ii oo uu
b t j x kh d r s sh dh c
g f q k l m n w h y
SOMALI ALPHABET PRONUNCIATION
In this section, we will focus on the Somali Alphabet Pronunciation. Here are the English language alphabet table followed by the Somali language alphabet table. There are letter and sound columns is these tables. The underlined letters in the sound columns are the specific letters that have the sound of the corresponding alphabet.
|F||France||O||Oman||X (H)||Hamar (Xamar)|
|H||Haiti||Q||Qatar||Z (S)||Zambia (Sambia)|
|I||India||R||Romania||PH (F)||Pharmacy (Farmasi)|
There are five long vowels in Somali language and they are pronounced as follows:
|Letters||Sound||Somali Writing||Somali: Try these|
|AA||Adam, Abbey,||Aadam, Aabi||Kaalay, Aaway, Jaale|
|EE||Yes, Press||Yees, Prees||Hees, Keen, Beel|
|II||Peel, Been, Lean, Me||Piil, Biin, Liin, Mii||Kiish, Siin, Xiir|
|OO||Ball, Old, World,||Bool, Oold, Woorld||Oohin, Oon, Xoolo|
|UU||Wound, Spoon, Oops||Wuund, Spuun, Uups||Suuf, Buufin, Suuxid|
As you can see in the above table, Somali long vowels are either two (aa)s, two (ee)s two (ii)s, two (oo)s, or two (uu)s. You won’t normally see combinations of (oe), (ai), (ua), (iu). Occasionally you might see someone write (hau sheegin or hai waydiin) for example. This is technically poor writing. The correct way is (ha u sheegin or ha i waydiin). Since you learned that long vowels are only two identical vowels, you should pronounce (au), (ai), or (ua), as two separate short vowels.
- Remember (u) has the “u” sound in Uber and (uu) has the (oo) sound in (Oops).There are Somali words that double such as double d, double l and double r and more. They are called “Labalaab” meaning doubling of the consonant. The pronunciation of these double letters in words sre very strong. With these examples you get an idea of how these letters sound.
Somali English Pronunciation English Meaning Somali: Try these
- Carrab: Ar rab – Tongue
- Middi: Mid di – knife
- Xagge: Hag gee – Where
- Cirro: Cir ro -grey hair
- Ciddi: Id di – Nail (of the finger)
- Arrin: Ar rin – (case/situation)
- Hidde: Hid de – Genetic
- Hillaac: Hil laa – lightning
- Cunno: Un no – Food
- Billad: Bil lad – Medal
- Remember the English “X” and “C” are not the same as thee Somali “X” and “C” . You can always treat C as to be silent if pronouncing it is not easy for you.
Some English alphabets are not part of the Somali alphabet and vice versa. There are also letters in both alphabets that have different pronunciations. Here is another table to show the letters and pronunciation that are exclusive to either of the languages:
|Somali Letters||Somali Word||English Pronunciation||Somali: Try these|
|C: this letter is technically silent.||Celi, Cir, Col, Cun||Eli, Ir, Ol, Un||Cali, Ceeb, Ciil, Cunug|
|X: is substituted for H||Xarig, Xalay, Xin||Harig, Halay, Hin||Xanuun, Xaafad, Xil|
|Kh: is substituted for K||Khasab, Khalad, Khaanad||Kasab, Kalad, Kaanad||Khayr, Khafiif, Khudrad|
|DH is substituted for English D||Dhinac, Dhadhan||Dina, Dadan||Dhan, Dhar, Dhul|
|Q: is substituted for K||Qamar, Qayb, Qufac,||Kamar, Kayb, Kufa||Qalin, Qashin, Qatar|
There are English alphabets that are not in the Somali language. These are “V”, “Z”, “P”, “X” and “PH” and they are pronounced as follows “V” in (virus and van) is pronounced as (fayras and faan). Many Somali speakers who learn the English language don’t differentiate the “V” and F” sound. It takes practice to differentiate the two. Here is the list of “V”, “Z”, “P”, and “PH” with examples.
|English Letters||English Example||Somali Pronunciation||English: Try these|
|P: is substituted for B.||Pool, Pin, Problem||Buul, Biin, Boroboleem||Put, Pull, Perfume|
|V: is substituted for F||Virus, Van,||Fayras, Faan||Vaccine, Vacation, Vail|
|X: is substituted Z||Xenophobia, Xmas||Siinafobiya, Ekismas||Xenia, Xeric|
|Z: is substituted for S||Zambia, Zambi, Zulu||Sambia, Sambi, Suulu||Zig, Zag, Zap|
|PH: is substituted for F||Pharmacy, Photo||Farmaci, Footo||Phrase, Photocopy|
If there is anything you don’t understand, please ask in the comment area or visit the forum.
If you see any typo or other errors please contact us immediately. Thanks and good luck.