Beginners Learn Italian

Italian Pronunciation: vowels

Italian for Beginners :

Good news is that most Americans already know how to pronounce Italian sounds as there are many Italian words that are used in English language. Italian vowels, contrary to English vowels, are ALWAYS pronounced in the same way regardless their positions in the words.

There are five written vowels in Italian language; they are a, e, i , o , u. Among these sounds there is no Italian sound that does not have an identical or fairly close English sound. Italian language does not use y, j and w instead it replaces them with i and u unless it is a word borrowed from English.

Enclosed below are examples of words that can be used to master pronunciation of certain vowels:

  • A Is always pronounced like in  lava ( check it out pronounce pizza, you will see the A is pronounced the same way ) or Alberta or Pizza
  • E is always pronounced like in words like Cello, Espresso,Gelato
  • I is always pronounced like in the word Italy or Indiana or Ponzi ( like in Ponzi scheme )
  • O in all Italian words is always pronounced like in English word sport, alto, bravo, Marco
  • U is always pronounced like in words buongiorno, zulu or uno (as numero uno)

Here is an exercise for you to practice sounds pronunciations that we have just learned: ( of course push the play button to hear the audio )

  • Adagio
  • Al Dente
  • Al Fresco
  • Allegro
  • Alto
  • Antipasto
  • Ballerina
  • Banana
  • Biscotto
  • Brava
  • Bravo
  • Broccoli
  • Camera
  • Cappuccino
  • Carpaccio
  • Casanova
  • Cello
  • Ciao
  • Confetti
  • Cupola
  • Donna
  • Espresso
  • Fiasco
  • Forte
  • Fresco
  • Gelato
  • Gondola
  • Grappa
  • Impresario
  • Inferno
  • Influenza
  • Lasagna
  • Linguine
  • Lotto
  • Madonna
  • Mamma mia
  • Manifesto
  • Marinara
  • Monopoli
  • Mozzarella
  • Opera
  • Paparazzo
  • Pasta
  • Panini
  • Presto
  • Pronto
  • Propaganda
  • Prosciutto
  • Radicchio
  • Soprano
  • Spaghetti
  • Stiletto
  • Stucco
  • Tempo
  • Terracotta
  • Tiramisu
  • Tuba
  • Vendetta
  • Villa
  • Zero
  • Zucchini
  • Zulu

Other English words were vowels are pronounce the “Italian way” are

Mississipi, Nevada, Arizona, California, Alaska, Texas, Florida, Indiana, Minnesota, Montana, Alabama, Oregon, Vermont, Virginia, Dakota, Australia, Guatemala, Argentina

Now lets try with a word not in the English language




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