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Lesson Transcript

Hi everyone.
Welcome to The Ultimate Greek Pronunciation Guide.
In this lesson, you'll learn all 5 Greek vowel sounds.
"α (as in άρτος)
ε (as in έξι)
ι (as in ίαση)
ο (as in όγκος)
ου (as in ούλο)"
With these sounds, you can pronounce any vowel that could possibly appear in Greek!
Are you ready?
Then let's get started!
The first vowel sound is...
άρτος
ένατος
θάλασσα
παράμερα"
It's similar to the A sound in the word 'mama' or 'papa'.
α, α (slowly)
α, α (slowly)
The next vowel sound is...
έξι
τσελεμεντές
βέβαια
έπαινος"
"It's similar to the E sound in the word 'bed'.
We should note that certain double vowel combinations in Greek aren't pronounced the same way as they're spelt. These two vowels for example, are actually pronounced as a single vowel sound. As you can see, these two vowels are also pronounced like the E sound in the word 'bed'. Listen to how Stefania pronounces this vowel sound."
ε, ε (slowly)
ε, ε (slowly)
The next vowel sound is...
ίαση
οικείος
υιοθετώ
βαρύς"
"It's the same as the double E sound in the word 'see'.
Like the previous sound, there are also many double vowels which can be used to represent this sound. Although spelt differently, all of them are pronounced the same way. Listen to how Stefania pronounces this vowel sound."
ι, ι (slowly)
ι, ι (slowly)
The next vowel sound is...
"ο
όγκος
τεντώνω
μώλωπας
μοσχοβολώ"
As you can see, there are two letters which can be used to represent this sound. The sound is similiar to the O sound in the word 'pot', though try to open and round your mouth more than you would normally.
ο, ο (slowly)
ο, ο (slowly)
The last vowel sound for this lesson is...
"oυ
oυρά
ακούω
καπελού
κουρούνα"
"This double vowel is pronounced like the double OO sound in the word 'pool'.
Listen to how Stefania pronounces this vowel sound."
oυ, oυ (slowly)
oυ, oυ (slowly)
Well done! You've just learned all 5 vowel sounds in Greek!
"α (as in άρτος)
ε (as in έξι)
ι (as in ίαση)
ο (as in όγκος)
ου (as in ούλο)"
In the next lesson, you'll start learning consonants sounds.
Which vowel sound was the toughest for you to pronounce? Please comment and share your thoughts.
See you in the next Ultimate Greek Pronunciation Guide lesson!

14 Comments

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GreekPod101.com Verified
Saturday at 06:30 PM
Pinned Comment
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Feel free to let us know if you have any questions.

GreekPod101.com Verified
Tuesday at 08:13 PM
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Hi Shaun,


Thank you for the kind comment. I'm glad to know my pronunciation helps you :)


It's hard to get an example right when using English as the teaching language because there are so many different pronunciations of English. So the best thing is to get a lot of exposure to the sounds of Greek and, as you said, it will all come naturally. But even if it doesn't because it's not easy for a non-native to sound like a native (in any language), Greeks will understand you for sure. We are accustomed to all sorts of foreign pronunciations because of tourism.


Keep it up and let me know if you have any questions!


All the best,


Stefania

Team GreekPod101.com

Shaun Ewings
Tuesday at 05:54 AM
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As a native English speaker from England, the one I am struggling with the most is the o sound. I think pot isn't right. I have tried to write down what I think the sound is like, but it is difficult when I don't think it corresponds to either English pronunciation of o, but somewhere between. I think my best hope is to listen to how it is pronounced across multiple words and hopefully it will start to become natural.


I am glad that Stefania is doing these as her voice is exceptionally clear and that makes thing much easier.


Shaun

GreekPod101.com Verified
Tuesday at 04:12 AM
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Hi Turiya,


Thank you for your comment!


I agree. English speakers might have a harder time adjusting to pronounce Greek vowels.


Glad to know you have no issues with them :)


All the best,


Stefania

Team GreekPod101.com

Turiya
Sunday at 05:25 PM
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I am able to pronounce the greek vowels quite easily if I don't think of the English equivalent...

I believe that it's harder to pronounce greek sounds if depending on English ones.

Thanks for the detailed lesson.😄

GreekPod101.com Verified
Tuesday at 11:11 AM
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Hi Barbara!


It seems your brain has been switched to Greek mode! Congratulations (with Greek accent 😄, hahaha!)

And yeah, you are right about the Greek o. It's open and free! A steady open sound that doesn't change in the end. All Greek vowels are like that. Very pure.


Stefania

Team GreekPod101.com

Barbara Marinakis
Tuesday at 11:05 AM
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It seems to me that the difference between and English "o" sound and the Greek is that the English closes down at the finish while the Greek "o" stays open. With the Greek the mouth doesn't change shape, doesn't close down to a "w" at the end but the English "o" does.


I think of it as saying "o" without tying it off. Just leave it open and free! 😄

Barbara Marinakis
Monday at 04:10 PM
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No questions at the moment but I've been practicing my Greek pronunciation so much that sometimes when I talk aloud to myself it comes out in a Greek accent!


I never could do a Greek accent before I started studying the language! 😄

GreekPod101.com Verified
Tuesday at 04:24 PM
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Hi Alain,


"Road" contains the cluster "oa" which is considered a diphthong in English, a gliding sound between two vowels pronounced in the same syllable (rôud). The Greek ο is not a gliding sound. The example "pot" used in the lesson was used with UK-RP accent in mind. RP stands for "received pronunciation" and is a standard English accent, also called "Oxford English".


You can select UK-RP next to the audio button below to hear that "o" that sounds very close to the Greek "ο".

http://www.wordreference.com/engr/pot


Kind regards,


Stefania

Team GreekPod101.com

Alain Côté
Tuesday at 01:04 PM
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Hi there!


based on what I am hearing in the lesson, it seems to me that the "o" sound is much closer to the vowel sound in the English word "road" then in "pot". I think you should consider changing your example!


What do you think?


Thanks!

GreekPod101.com Verified
Tuesday at 12:25 PM
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Hi Ruth,


Thank you for your comment.


Perhaps in the midwestern accent "pot" is not a good example, if you pronounce the o like the a in "mama". It's hard for me to find an English equivalent for you since I'm not an expert in midwestern accent. Maybe Santa's "Ho, ho, ho!" could work?


If not, then what I recommend is to forget about using an English word as a base (since there's no exact equivalent in the first place), and just focus on the pronunciation as heard in the video. The /o/ sound is one and unique, it doesn't vary like in English. In the video it is repeated and you can also hear the few examples after 2:29. Όγκος is a good example to memorize rather than using an English word for reference.


For more examples, you can search the site's dictionary for any word that has the ο or ω and listen to the audio as the /o/ pronunciation will always be the same. You can also check out our vocabulary lists for words with ο and ω


I hope this was helpful!


Happy studying!


Stefania

Team GreekPod101.com