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Finnish Alphabet

How to pronounce the Finnish alphabet.

No matter why you want to learn Finnish but I’m sure one of the things you want to achieve is being able to speak fluently and correctly and that’s why learning the right pronunciation right in the beginning is the best favor you can do to yourself. Once you know enough words to maintain a conversation I bet you don’t want to pronounce like Tarzan. Luckily, the pronunciation isn’t hard at all. All the letters are always pronounced as they are written and you don’t have to think of any complicated rules. Here I give you the instructions to the pronunciation:

Vowels:

A=Pronounced like A in “after” (British English) or A in “hot” (American English) 

E=Similar to first E in “hence” I=Like I in “fit”

O=Like O in “top”

U=Pronounced like U in “full

Y=The most difficult of the finnish vowels, try to prepare your mouth to say U but say I instead

Ä=A with two dots, pronounced like A “hat”

Ö=O with dots, pronounced like U in “further”

Consonants

D=Normal D

G=Exist only in the combination NG, pronounced like NG in “sing”

H=Like H in “Harry” J=Like Y in “yard”

K=A bit softer than K in English

L=Normal L

M=Normal M

N=Normal N

P=A bit softer than English P

R=A bit harsher than English R

S=Normal S

T=A bit harsher than English T

V=Normal V

After reading these instructions I suggest you to listen some songs as you follow the lyrics to get familiar with the pronunciation. For example a band called Zen Cafe has really clear lyrics. Songs like “Todella Kaunis” (very beautiful) and “Piha ilman sadettajaa” (A yard without a sprinkler) are easy to listen for beginners. You can find both of the songs and many more in Youtube and lyrics by google by writing the name of the song and lyrics. Enjoy!

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