Swahili Pronounciation

August 29, 2009 by · 1 Comment 

Ive been asked by a loyal reader to give some more information about Swahili Pronunciation prior to our free Swahili course.

Swahili Pronunciation
The Swahili alphabet is identical to that of English, with the exception of X and Q, which do not exist. Most consonants have almost the same pronunciation as English. The vowels have specific pronunciation rules, which are never broken.

Swahili Vowel Sounds
a … Father
e … Egg
i … Bee
o … Door (be careful not to ‘close’ the o sound at the end, as in low)
u … Loop

Special Swahili Consonant Sounds
The following combination’s of consonants create specific sounds, some identical to the English equivalent.

dh … there (do not confuse with thanks)
th … thanks (do not confuse with there)
sh … shopping
ch … church (never charlatan or chemistry)
ng … jingles (do not confuse with sing)
ng’ … sing (do not confuse with jingles)

Note that whenever m is followed by another consonant, there is no vowel sound between the two letters. Similarly, when pronouncing a word beginning with m, the mouth should be closed to begin with – there should be no vowel sound before the m.

In Swahili, there are no silent letters, and neither do letters change pronunciation depending on spelling, as in English (compare cough and through). Each letter is pronounced individually, the same way every time. This rule is true for vowels as well as consonants.

Note that the consonant combination gh is generally pronounced like g, though technically it is similar to Scottish loch, but voiced.

Swahili Emphasis
The emphasis, or accent, is almost always placed on the second-to-last syllable of a word. The exceptions to this rule are extremely rare, and are usually found in words borrowed from other languages, mostly Arabic (for example, maalum).

In the case of doubled vowels or vowel combination’s, each vowel is a syllable in itself and is pronounced separately (for example, the word maalum actually has three syllables, as each ‘a’ is pronounced individually).

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Learn Swahili . net

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What is the swahili translation of this phrase?

November 14, 2008 by · 3 Comments 

What is the swahili translation of this phrase? : Good Afternoon! We are representing our class! I am (name) and (name).

Anyways Mark here’s the correct translation”jambo or habari or you can say “habari za mchana” for good afternoon. Sisi tunaliwakilisha darasa letu.mimi ni( name)na (name)for the last sentence if you are intending to say something like “i am a student and my name is mark”it’s mimi ni(student/mwanafunzi)na jina langu ni mark.
Hope i helped and if you need more clarification feel free to write to me.i’ll help whenever i can

Asante

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Swahili translated into english (site or your help)?

November 10, 2008 by · 2 Comments 

Swahili translated into english (site or your help)?: I need to know how to say “Angel”, “God’s Gift”, “Star”, “Warrior” “Strong” and/or “Prince” in Swahili. Do you know a site where they do free translations or do you know how to say at least one of those? (if not please do not answer)

Here are the Swahili Translations:

angel – malaika (mar-lar-ee-car)
god’s gift – zawadi ya mungu (say- za-wer-dee yah moo-ngoo)
star – nyota (say nyor-ter)
warrior – mpiganaji
strong – nguvu (say ngoo-voo)

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