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Notes on Welsh Pronunciation


Welsh pronunciation is not nearly so difficult as it is popularly supposed to be. With the exception of y, every letter has an invariable value, and is always pronounced.




a short: pronounced as in pan.

a long    ,,     ,,               father.

e short   ,,     ,,               pen.

e long    ,,                       like the first element of the diphthong in lane.


i short    ,,                       as in pin.

i long     ,,     ,,               machine.

o short   ,,     ,,               cot.

o long    ,,                       like the first element of the diphthong in note.

u           ,,                       (approximately) like the French u in sur.

w short  ,,                       like the oo in wood.

w long   ,,      ,,              like the oo in wooed.

y           ,,                       sometimes like u in but, and sometimes (approximately) like the French u in sur.




They may be pronounced by giving to each of the component vowels the value indicated above.




c is always pronounced as k, chi as in the Scotch loch, dd as th in breathe, f as v, ff as f, s is always hard, as in loss; ll represents a spirant l, a very difficult sound to represent in English--Englishmen generally render it as thl.




The accent is nearly always on the last syllable but one (or penult) as Elidyr, Seithényn.




Gwyddno = Gwithno, th as in breathe; Gwenhúdiw = Gwenhid-ue; Syfáddon = Syváthon, th as in breathe; Dwt = Dŏot, oo as in wood; Pwca = Pŏoka, oo as in wood; Ardúdwy = Ardidŏoi; Llwyd = Llōōid, ll the spirant l, oo as in wooed.



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