Turkish 101: The Alphabet

A former student of mine, Ozant, has been generous enough to help us with our Turkish 101. He will be giving us the translation and pronunciation of the Turkish words. 

For now, Ozant gave us the pronunciation guide of the Turkish Alphabet. Here it is:

A – a as in “ugly “

B – be as in “bell”

C – ce as in “jealous”

Ç – çe as in “chair”

D – de as in “decade”

E – e as in “elephant”

F – fe as in “federal”

G – ge as in “get”

Ğ – ğe*

H – he as in “helicopter”

I – ı as in “number”

İ – i as in “insect”

J – je as in “azure” (garaj = garage, pronounced as in French & English)

K – ke as in “kettle”

L – le as in “leg”

M – me as in “men”

N – ne as in “never”

O – o as in “orchestra”

Ö – ö as in “urge”

P – pe as in “pen”

R – re as in “red”

S – se as in “sell”

Ş – şe as in “shelf”

T – te as in “telephone”

U – u as in “oops!”

Ü – ü as in “fruit, nude”

V – ve as in “vegetable”

Y – ye as in “yes”

Z – ze as in “zebra”

Special Words

İ, i [dotted i] as ‘ee’ in ‘see’

I, ı [undotted i] ‘uh’ or the vowel sound in ‘fuss’ and ‘plus’

O, o same as in English ‘phone’

Ö, ö same as in German, or like British ‘ur’, as in ‘fur’

Ü, ü same as in German, or French ‘u’ in ‘tu’

Ç, ç [c-cedilla] ‘ch’ as in ‘church’ and ‘chatter’

Ğ, ğ – a ‘g’ with a little curved line over it: not pronounced; lengthens preceding vowel slightly; you can safely ignore it—just don’t pronounce it! (This is the only exception to Rule 1)

Ş, ş – [s-cedilla] ‘sh’ as in ‘show’ and ‘should’

V, v a soft ‘v’ sound, half-way to ‘w’

W, w same as Turkish ‘v’; found only in foreign words

X, x as in English; found only in foreign words; Turkish words use ‘ks‘ instead

I know it’s difficult to pronounce them, Ozant promised us an audio guide for the Alphabet. Wait for it.. till next time!

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