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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%lavender 
ə28.99%necklace 
20.57%rake 
ɑ5.03%garage 
ɛ3.47%chair 
a2.75%handkerchief 
ɪ1.92%mountain 
ɔ1.63%walk 
ɒ1.23%swallow 
ʌ0.54%appointment 
ai
100.00%plai
al
100.00%social 
ar
ɑ62.22%charge 
ə32.96%mustar
ɔ4.81%wardrobe 
au
ɔ97.92%laundry 
a2.08%laugh 
augh
ɔ77.78%daughter 
ɑf22.22%laughter 
aw
ɔ100.00%jaw 
b
b100.00%brought 
bb
b100.00%rabbit 
c
k77.19%cat 
s22.81%ceiling 
cc
k100.00%accountant 
ch
45.65%chalk 
k21.30%school 
ʃ20.00%chef 
t͡ʃ13.04%peach 
ci
ʃ80.00%politician 
ʃi20.00%species 
ck
k100.00%necklace 
d
d100.00%hold 
dd
d100.00%ladder 
don
dn̩100.00%abandon 
e
ɛ43.75%twelve 
ɪ22.88%bonne
ə18.90%scalpe
i8.37%ceiling 
e4.39%helicopter 
ɪə1.70%zero 
ea
i66.67%beach 
ɛ28.46%pleasure 
ɪ2.44%dea
ɪə2.44%idea 
ear
ɜ32.50%early 
ɛə10.00%bear 
ɪə̯7.50%ear 
eau
ju100.00%beauty 
ed
d100.00%used 
ee
i100.00%seventee
eigh
100.00%eigh
er
ə39.34%gutter 
əɹ31.97%ruler 
ɜ16.72%deser
ɚ11.97%photographer 
eu
ju100.00%neutral 
ew
ju100.00%newspaper 
ey
i100.00%chimney 
f
f100.00%butterfly 
ff
f100.00%coffee 
g
ɡ62.93%groceries 
27.65%engineer 
ʒ4.48%judg
d͡ʒ4.19%charg
g0.75%grandmother 
gg
ɡ100.00%egg 
gh
f100.00%laugh 
gion
dʒən100.00%regional 
h
h100.00%hold 
i
ɪ74.61%appointment 
15.34%knife 
i4.64%pedestrian 
ə3.88%cousi
j0.76%onion 
ʌɪ0.76%require 
ie
i100.00%believe 
igh
100.00%ligh
ir
ɜ55.77%thirty 
ə44.23%stair
j
87.62%jeans 
d͡ʒ12.38%juice 
k
k100.00%drink 
kn
n100.00%kneel 
l
l98.00%shovel 
ɫ1.39%beautiful 
əl0.60%real 
le
əl100.00%bicycle 
ll
l100.00%pull 
m
m100.00%man 
mm
m100.00%commission 
n
n96.48%nose 
ŋ3.52%win
ng
ŋ100.00%string 
nn
n100.00%tunnel 
o
ə30.58%microwave 
ɒ26.97%psychological 
əʊ16.92%motor 
o6.88%sofa 
ʌ5.85%brother 
ɔ5.28%bo
ɑ5.11%photographer 
u1.55%cano
ʊ0.86%woman 
oa
əʊ49.02%goa
ɔ31.37%keyboard 
19.61%soa
oe
ʌ100.00%doesn't 
oo
u64.12%roo
ʊ33.59%loo
ʌ2.29%floo
or
ɔ91.63%horse 
ɜ8.37%wor
ou
74.10%cloudy 
u13.67%voluptuou
ʌ11.51%touch 
ɑʊ0.72%found 
ough
ɔ69.23%though
ʌf30.77%tough 
oul
ʊ100.00%coul
our
ɔɹ83.33%four 
əɹ16.67%favour 
ous
əs100.00%serious 
ow
əʊ56.84%window 
43.16%cow 
p
p100.00%transport 
ph
f100.00%geograph
pp
p100.00%apple 
ps
s100.00%psychological 
qu
kw77.65%question 
k22.35%liquor 
r
ɹ69.46%require 
r24.03%religion 
ə3.31%requir
əɹ3.20%temperatur
rr
ɹ100.00%mirror 
s
s81.30%seventeen 
z17.28%jeans 
ʃ0.74%sugar 
ʒ0.69%pleasure 
sh
ʃ100.00%dashboard 
sion
ʒən72.00%television 
ʃən28.00%pension 
ss
s98.17%class 
ʃ1.83%issue 
ssion
ʃən100.00%commission 
t
t100.00%mountain 
th
θ68.18%bathroom 
ð31.82%mother 
tion
ʃən97.69%dictionary 
ʃn̩2.31%addition 
tt
t100.00%bottom 
tu
100.00%voluptuous 
u
ʌ48.46%butterfly 
ju19.51%uniform 
ə13.04%luxury 
u7.19%flute 
5.44%security 
ʊ4.93%push 
ɪ1.44%guitar 
ue
u100.00%crue
ui
u100.00%juice 
ur
ɜ92.86%purple 
ɜr7.14%turning 
v
v100.00%twelv
w
w95.39%whale 
ʊ4.61%rainbow 
wh
ʍ84.62%when 
hw15.38%which 
wr
ɹ100.00%writing 
x
ks84.92%ax
ɡ11.90%exit 
3.17%luxury 
y
i69.47%cherry 
ɪ15.58%bicycle 
10.59%psychological 
j4.36%yellow 
z
z100.00%sneez
zz
z100.00%puzzle