Help:IPA for Mayan

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The charts below show the way in which the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) represents Mayan pronunciations in Wikipedia articles. This pronunciation guide is based on the phonology of Classic Maya,[1] and is not valid for many contemporary Mayan languages.

IPA Examples English approximation
ʔ ' the catch in uh-oh; a glottal stop
ɓ b' no English equivalent, somewhat like boy
ch child
tʃʼ ch' somewhat like child
h h he
x j loch
k k skin
k' somewhat like kin
l l leave
m m man
n n noodle
ŋ nh sing
p p span
p' somewhat like pan
q q no English equivalent, somewhat like cut
q' as above, but ejective
r r' Spanish perro
s s sack
t t stand
t' somewhat like tan
ty no English equivalent, somewhat like Christian
tʲʼ ty' as above, but ejective
ts tz cats
tsʼ tz' somewhat like cats
w w wand
ʃ x shoe
j y yes
IPA Examples English approximation
a a tar
aa blah
e e met
ee pay
i i city
ii see
o o Somewhat like go[2]
oo go
u u somewhat like good
uu food
ˈ Oxk'utzkab [oʃkʼut͡sˈkab]
This Orthography & Variant Orthography
This One Variant
Bakab, Chaahk Bacab, Chaac


  1. Boot, E. (2002). A Preliminary Classic Maya-English / English-Classic Maya Vocabulary of Hieroglyphic Readings. Leiden University, the Netherlands. Retrieved September 13, 2012.
  2. The Maya /o/ doesn't quite line up with any English vowel, though the nearest equivalents are the vowel of coat (for most English dialects) and the vowel of saw.