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The Sounds of English

Below is a list of the common sounds of English and the letter groups used to represent these sounds. Letters and groups of letters may have different sounds, and this is shown along with their IPA symbols (International Phonetic Alphabet) and their frequency of occurrence.

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Spelling IPA Frequency Example
a
æ33.88%magazine 
ə28.99%vitamin 
20.57%radio 
ɑ5.03%bra 
ɛ3.47%hair 
a2.75%cabbage 
ɪ1.92%orange 
ɔ1.63%wall 
ɒ1.23%swa
ʌ0.54%appointment 
ai
100.00%sailor 
al
100.00%social 
ar
ɑ62.22%charge 
ə32.96%sugar 
ɔ4.81%war
au
ɔ97.92%laundry 
a2.08%laugh 
augh
ɔ77.78%daughter 
ɑf22.22%laughing 
aw
ɔ100.00%jaw 
b
b100.00%blur 
bb
b100.00%rabbit 
c
k77.19%actor 
s22.81%piec
cc
k100.00%accountant 
ch
45.65%bench 
k21.30%stomach 
ʃ20.00%watch 
t͡ʃ13.04%chest 
ci
ʃ80.00%social 
ʃi20.00%species 
ck
k100.00%neck 
d
d100.00%idea 
dd
d100.00%ladder 
don
dn̩100.00%abandon 
e
ɛ43.75%bend 
ɪ22.88%chicke
ə18.90%ove
i8.37%ceiling 
e4.39%vegetable 
ɪə1.70%beer 
ea
i66.67%peach 
ɛ28.46%weather 
ɪ2.44%ears 
ɪə2.44%idea 
ear
ɜ32.50%early 
ɛə10.00%bear 
ɪə̯7.50%ear 
eau
ju100.00%beautiful 
ed
d100.00%called 
ee
i100.00%fiftee
eigh
100.00%eighty 
er
ə39.34%energy 
əɹ31.97%silver 
ɜ16.72%deser
ɚ11.97%weather 
eu
ju100.00%feu
ew
ju100.00%newspaper 
ey
i100.00%monkey 
f
f100.00%feud 
ff
f100.00%cliff 
g
ɡ62.93%goose 
27.65%bandag
ʒ4.48%judg
d͡ʒ4.19%energ
g0.75%grandmother 
gg
ɡ100.00%egg 
gh
f100.00%laugh 
gion
dʒən100.00%religion 
h
h100.00%heard 
i
ɪ74.61%beautiful 
15.34%lime 
i4.64%radi
ə3.88%security 
j0.76%onion 
ʌɪ0.76%idea 
ie
i100.00%piece 
igh
100.00%lightning 
ir
ɜ55.77%thirteen 
ə44.23%stair
j
87.62%jeans 
d͡ʒ12.38%juice 
k
k100.00%kitchen 
kn
n100.00%kneel 
l
l98.00%pol
ɫ1.39%silver 
əl0.60%real 
le
əl100.00%bicycle 
ll
l100.00%smell 
m
m100.00%appointment 
mm
m100.00%commission 
n
n96.48%chainsaw 
ŋ3.52%anxious 
ng
ŋ100.00%ring 
nn
n100.00%tunnel 
o
ə30.58%tomato 
ɒ26.97%alcoho
əʊ16.92%radio 
o6.88%saxophone 
ʌ5.85%mother 
ɔ5.28%floor 
ɑ5.11%stocking 
u1.55%cano
ʊ0.86%woman 
oa
əʊ49.02%toaster 
ɔ31.37%dashboard 
19.61%soa
oe
ʌ100.00%doe
oo
u64.12%goose 
ʊ33.59%foo
ʌ2.29%floo
or
ɔ91.63%corner 
ɜ8.37%wor
ou
74.10%accountant 
u13.67%sou
ʌ11.51%cousin 
ɑʊ0.72%found 
ough
ɔ69.23%brough
ʌf30.77%tough 
oul
ʊ100.00%coul
our
ɔɹ83.33%four 
əɹ16.67%colour 
ous
əs100.00%famous 
ow
əʊ56.84%swallow 
43.16%towel 
p
p100.00%pilot 
ph
f100.00%photographer 
pp
p100.00%apple 
ps
s100.00%psychological 
qu
kw77.65%quite 
k22.35%liquor 
r
ɹ69.46%incongruous 
r24.03%photographer 
ə3.31%requir
əɹ3.20%during 
rr
ɹ100.00%ferr
s
s81.30%psychiatris
z17.28%desert 
ʃ0.74%sugar 
ʒ0.69%pleasure 
sh
ʃ100.00%shoulder 
sion
ʒən72.00%decision 
ʃən28.00%pension 
ss
s98.17%dress 
ʃ1.83%pressure 
ssion
ʃən100.00%commission 
t
t100.00%appointment 
th
θ68.18%thigh 
ð31.82%mother 
tion
ʃən97.69%dictionary 
ʃn̩2.31%addition 
tt
t100.00%lettuce 
tu
100.00%voluptuous 
u
ʌ48.46%cupboard 
ju19.51%computer 
ə13.04%luxury 
u7.19%prune 
5.44%security 
ʊ4.93%incongruous 
ɪ1.44%biscuit 
ue
u100.00%blue 
ui
u100.00%frui
ur
ɜ92.86%tur
ɜr7.14%turning 
v
v100.00%oven 
w
w95.39%wave 
ʊ4.61%crowbar 
wh
ʍ84.62%wh
hw15.38%which 
wr
ɹ100.00%writing 
x
ks84.92%sixty 
ɡ11.90%exit 
3.17%anxious 
y
i69.47%luxury 
ɪ15.58%bicycle 
10.59%cry 
j4.36%yacht 
z
z100.00%freezer 
zz
z100.00%puzzle