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The charts below show the way in which the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) represents Finnish language pronunciations in Wikipedia articles. For a guide to adding IPA characters to Wikipedia articles, see {{IPA-fi}} and Wikipedia:Manual of Style/Pronunciation § Entering IPA characters.

See Finnish phonology for a more thorough look at the sounds of Finnish.

IPA Examples English approximation
b bussi[1] big
d ladot adept
f filmi[1] film
ɡ magia[1] go
h hevonen, vaha horse
j joulu yolk
k kala scold
lakki bookkeeping
l laulu lack
pullo taillight
m metsä, onpa[2] may
kammio roommate
n nenä nanny
kannu unnatural
ŋ vangita, ken[3] sing
p puu spill
lippu stepparent
r rauta rolled r, Spanish perro
s sinä sole
kissa dissatisfied
ʃ šakki[1] shy
t tina stand
hattu nighttime
ʋ viha Between vet and wet
ʔ vaaan, linja-auto the pause in uh-oh
ˈ hevonen Normally placed on the first syllable.
Two syllables in some compound words.
tule! [ˈtuˈle] Both syllables in two-syllable imperatives.
IPA Examples English approximation
ɑ pouta like father, but shorter
ɑː poutaa father
æ pöytä cat
æː päivää mad
e terve let
eesti pay
i viha city
siika see
o oksa like more, but shorter
koostaa more
ø pöly somewhat like nurse
øː säröön somewhat like bird
u surma influence
suu, ruoan loo
y kesy somewhat like cube
ryyppy somewhat like cute

Finnish diphthongs

IPA Examples English approximation
ɑi̯ aika eye
ɑu̯ aura how
æi̯ äiti main in Australian dialects
æy̯ täytyy No English equivalent
ei̯ ei, hei pay
eu̯ neutraali No English equivalent. Spanish and Italian neutro.
ey̯ keskeytyä No English equivalent
ie̯ kieli somewhat like yes
iu̯ viulu few
IPA Examples English approximation
iy̯ siistiytyä No English equivalent
oi̯ koittaa, koettaa coin
ou̯ outo GA no
øi̯ töi No English equivalent. French feuille.
øy̯ pöyristyä RP no
ui̯ muita ruin
uo̯ Suomi Somewhat like woah
yi̯ syi Somewhat like wheat
yø̯ , t No English equivalent. French pollueuse (but with diphthong)


  1. ^ a b c d [b], [f], [ɡ], and [ʃ] occur only in loanwords. In casual speech, they may be replaced with [p], [ʋ], [k], and [s], respectively.
  2. ^ Allophone of /n/ before /p/.
  3. ^ Allophone of /n/ before /k/.


  • Suomi, Kari; Toivanen, Juhani; Ylitalo, Riikka (2008), Finnish sound structure, ISBN 978-951-42-8983-5

External links

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