International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA)

Ok, before India Pale Ale became a thing we had International Phonetic Alphabet – a really handy tool for singers and linguists. The idea behind IPA was to have a way to graphically represent sounds that would work for many languages despite differences in orthography. It’s not perfect, but it works pretty well, especially for those languages that use the Roman alphabet.

Once you get the hang of it, IPA can be a really quick way to remind yourself of text pronunciations that don’t come naturally to you.

For more information on International Phonetic Alphabet, visit this site.

The chart below displays a key to using IPA for the English language. The first column shows the IPA symbol. The second column shows the sound (in English) associated with the IPA symbol, and the third column gives an example of a word that uses the sound.