Easiest Dutch Pronunciation Guide

Easiest Dutch Pronunciation Guide:

The easiest introduction to Dutch pronunciation is to pronounce the Dutch words spelled like English but pronounced somewhat differently than English.

This is the Easiest Dutch Pronunciation for two reasons:

First, some parts of these Dutch words spelled like English are pronounced the same way as in English. This reveals that you already know how to pronounce some parts of these Easiest Dutch words, which should give you confidence.

Second, by pronouncing the other parts of the Dutch words that are different from the English pronunciation you are familiar with, you will begin to get an understanding of the Dutch pronunciation system.

After Dutch words spelled like English and also pronounced like English, the next easiest Dutch pronunciations are these Dutch words spelled like English but pronounced somewhat differently than English, as listed below.

Dutch Pronunciation Differs From English In Various Ways:

The words below followed by their Dutch pronunciations should help you realize that they really are foreign words even though they are spelled exactly like English.

The easiest introduction to Dutch pronunciation is to pronounce each of these Dutch words spelled like English. By hearing how the Dutch pronunciation differs from the English pronunciation you are familiar with, you will begin to get an understanding of the Dutch pronunciation system.

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In Dutch half of the consonants are generally pronounced the same as in English:

B, C, F, H, K, L, M, N, P, Q, T, X, Y, Z

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Other Dutch Letters Are Pronounced Differently Than English.

Letter –A– is Pronounced “AH” in Dutch:

So the Dutch Letter –A– is Pronounced “AH” Like British English.

If you are American and pronounce the letter –A– in the following words as you usually do, you will probably still be understood by Dutch people.

acne [AHK-nay]

adapter [aa-DAHP-tuhr]

bank [bahngk]

compact (adj) [kom-PAHKT]

factor [FAHK-tor]

fastfood [fahst-’food’]

fax [fahks]

half [hahlf]

ladder [LAH-der]

lamp [lahmp]

man [mahn]

mango [MAHN-goa]

plan [plahn]

taxi [TAHK-see]

Other Dutch Pronunciations Like British English:

aluminum [AA-loo-MEE-nee-yuhm]

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Pronounced Somewhat Like English, But With Stress On A Different Syllable In Dutch

With Stress On The Final Syllable In Dutch

april [ah-PRIHL]

busstation [‘bus’-staa-SHOHN]

calorie [kah-loa-REE]

concert [kohn-SEHRT]

constant [kon-STAHNT]

cognac [kohn-YAHK]

lotion [loa-SHON]

manicure [maa-nee-KEWR]

patiënt (n.) [paa-SHEHNT]

pedicure [pay-dee-KEWR]

restaurant [rehs-toa-RAHNT]

specialist [spay-shaa-LIHST]

station (train) [staa-SHOHN]

student [stew-DEHNT

tablet [taa-BLEHT]

toilet (restroom) [twaa-LEHT]

fastfoodrestaurant [fahst-’food’-rehs-toa-RAHNT’]

With Stress On The First Syllable In Dutch

rosé [ROA-say]

shampoo [SHAHM-poa]

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Pronounced Almost Like English But With Last Letter –E– Pronounced As Added Syllable In Dutch

With the Final –E- Pronounced “UH”

ambulance [ahm-bew-LAHN-suh]

beige [BEH-zhuh]

lactose [LAHK-TOA-suh]

machine [mah-SHEE-nuh]

massage [mah-SAA-zhuh]

nectarine [nehk-taa-REE-nuh]

route [ROO-tuh]

aubergine (British for eggplant) [oa-behr-ZHEE-nuh]

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With the Final –E- Pronounced “ER”

brochure [bro-SHEW-rer]

capsule (medication) kahp-SOO-ler]

code [KOA-der]

migraine mee-GRAI-ner]

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Letter –S– Always Pronounced “S” But Never “Z” In Dutch

is [ihs, not ihz]

rosé [ROA-say]

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Letter –R– Pronounced “R” But Rolled In Dutch

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Dutch Letters Pronounced Differently Than In English, As Follows:

Letters –CH– Pronounced “KH” In Dutch

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Letter –D– Pronounced “T” In Dutch But Only At The Ends Of Words:

band [bahnt]

bed [beht]

had [haht]

hand [hahnt]

hard (tough) [hahrt]

land (n.) [lahnt]

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Letter –G– Pronounced “KH” In Dutch:

airbag [EHR-behk]

garage [khaa-RAA-zhuh]

gluten [KHLEW-tuhn]

goulash [KHOO-lahsh]

grapefruit [KRAYP-froot]

gram [khrahm]

grill [khrihl]

goulash [KHOO-lahsh]

gym [khihm]

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Letter –J– Pronounced “Y” In Dutch:

Letters –SCH– Pronounced “SKH” In Dutch:

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Letter –V– Pronounced “F” In Dutch:

vinaigrette [fih-nuh-KREHT]

november [noa-FEHM-buhr]

oven [OA-fuhn]

over [OA-fuhr]

souvenir soo-fuh-NEER]

Letter –V– Pronounced “F” In Dutch:

[Except in Adopted Foreign Words]

tv [tay-VAY]

voltage [vol-TAA-zher]

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Letter –W– Pronounced “V” In Dutch:

kiwi [KEE-vee]

warm (adj.) [vahrm]

was [vahs]

water [VAA-tuhr]

waterski('s) [‘vaa-tuhr-‘skis’]

we [vie, vuh]

week [vayk]

weekend [VEE-kehnt]

west [vehst]

whisky [VIHS-kee]

wind [vint]

winter [VIHN-tuhr]

bikiniwax [bee-KEE-nee-vahks]

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The Dutch Letter –I– is Pronounced Two Ways: “IH” as in English or “EE” as in Spanish.

Letter –I–Pronounced “IH” as in English:

biscuit [bihs-KVEE]

april [ah-PRIHL]

beginner [ber-GIH-ner]

specialist [spay-shaa-LIHST]

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Letter –I–Pronounced “EE” as in Spanish and other Romance Languages [French, Italian, Portuguese, and Romanian]

And in a very few words in English, like ‘taxi’, ‘machine’ and ‘nectarine’.

DUTCH -- [SAY]

taxi [TAHK-see]

machine [mah-SHEE-nuh]

nectarine [nehk-taa-REE-nuh]

ibuprofen [EE-bew-PROA-fehn]

minibar [mee-nee-‘bar’]

filet [fee-LAY]

migraine mee-GRAI-ner]

diabetes [dee-ah-BAY-terss]

terminal [TUHR-mee-nahl]

seminar [SEH-mee-nahr]

manicure [maa-nee-KEWR]

pedicure [pay-dee-KEWR]

bronchitis [brong-KHEE-terss]

centimeter [SEHN-tee-MAY-tuhr]

delicatessen [day-lee-kaa-TEH-sern]

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The Letter –E– is Pronounced Two Ways: “EH” as in English or “UH” in Dutch.

Letter –E– Pronounced “EH” in Dutch:

per [pehr]

Letter –E– Pronounced “UH” in Dutch:

me [muh]

Letters –EE– Pronounced “AY” in Dutch:

week [vayk]

matinee [ma-tee-nay]

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Letter –O– Pronounced “OH” As In ‘NOT’ in Dutch:

octopus [‘octopus’]

omelet [‘omelet’]

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Letters –AU– Pronounced “OW” in Dutch:

auto [OW-toa]

sauna [SOW-naa]

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Letters –UI– Pronounced “W” in Dutch:

fruit [frawt]

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OTHER DUTCH PRONUNCIATIONS DIFFER FROM ENGLISH IN VARIOUS WAYS:

[Note: a few pronunciations remain to be added]

aftershave

ballet

barbecue [BAHR-ber-kyew]

bouillon [boo-YOHN]

boulevard

buffet [bew-FEHT]

camping [KEHM-pihng]

carjacking [KOAR-zheh-king]

carpooling [KOAR-‘pooling’]

CD [ser-DAY]

CD-ROM [ser-day-ROM]

club [klerp]

cool (style)

cruise

december [day-SEHM-buhr]

deodorant [DAY-oa-doa-RAHNT]

detail [day-TIGH]

diesel [DEE-serl]

economy class

floss (dental)

game (tennis)

gratis (free of charge) [GRAA-terss]

hockey

instant messenger

jam [zhehm]

jazz [jehz]

label

lunch [lernsh]

manager [MAA-naa-zhuhr]

medium [MAY-dee-yuhm]

meter [MAY-tuhr]

museum [mew-ZAY-uhm]

non-stop

nylon [NAY-lon]

opera [OA-puh-raa]

panorama

PIN (number)

pizzeria

plastic [PLEH-stik]

plug

plus [plerss]

polyester

pub

pudding [PUH-dihng]

rap (music) [rehp]

reservoir [rer-zerr-VAAR]

sandwich [SEHNT-wihtsh]

single (person)

snack

steward (flight attendant)

stewardess (flight attendant)

sunblock

theater [tay-AA-ter]

thermometer [TEHR-moa-may-ter]

tram [trehm]

tunnel [TER-nerl]

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In some cases two words spelled like English are joined together to form one Dutch word:

DUTCH -- [SAY]

bikiniwax [bee-KEE-nee-vahks]

busroute

businessclass

creditcard [‘credit’-kahrt]

gin-tonic [zhihn-‘tonic’]

golfclubs [‘golf’-kluhps]

jetlag [ZHEHT-lehg]

lactose-intolerant [lahk-TOA-ser-in-toa-ler-rahnt]

mountainbike

parttime

snackbar

standby-ticket

tennismatch [‘tennis’-mehtsh]

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Return to Easiest Dutch Pronunciation.


Return to Easiest Dutch Introduction.


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