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Carib Pronunciation and Spelling Guide

Welcome to our Carib alphabet page! The following charts show the pronunciation for the Carib orthography we have used on our site, as well as some alternate spellings that you may find in other books and websites.

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Carib Vowels

Character
We Use:
Sometimes
Also Used:
IPA symbol: Carib pronunciation:
a    a Like the a in father.
e  ee  e ~ ε Like the e sound in Spanish, similar to the a in gate. In an unstressed syllable the Carib pronunciation sounds more like the e in get.
i  ii  i ~ I Like the i in police. In an unstressed syllable the Carib pronunciation sounds more like the i in bit.
y  ï, i  i This sound does not exist in English. It sounds like the i in police only pronounced further back in the mouth. If you've ever heard a Slavic language like Russian or Polish being spoken, it is the same "dark i" sound from those languages.
o  oo  o ~ Like o in note. Sometimes it is pronounced more like the au in naughty.
u  uu  u Like u in flute. In an unstressed syllable the Carib pronunciation sounds more like the u in put.

Carib Consonants

Character
We Use:
Sometimes
Also Used:
IPA symbol: Carib pronunciation:
b    b Like b in boy.
ch    t Like ch in cheese.
d    d Like d in day.
g    g Like g in good.
h  j  h ~ x Like h in hay. Sometimes in the middle of a word it is pronounced more raspily, like the j in Spanish jalapeño.
j  y  j Like y in yes.
k  c, qu  k Like the soft k sound in English ski.
kw  qu  kw Like qu in queen.
m    m Like m in moon.
n    n Like n in night.
ng    ŋ Like ng in sing.
p    p Like the soft p in spin.
r  l   Like the r in Spanish pero, somewhat like the tt in American English butter.
s    s Like the s in sun.
sh     Like sh in shell.
t    t Like the soft t in star.
w  hu  w Like w in way.
    A pause sound, like the one in the middle of the word "uh-oh."

Carib Indian Pronunciation and Vocabulary Resources

   Carib words
   Carib picture dictionary
   Caribe colors
   Galibi numbers
   The Carib alphabet (page in Dutch)
   Carib language

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