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%candy 
ə28.99%addition 
20.57%favour 
ɑ5.03%aunt 
ɛ3.47%hair 
a2.75%cast 
ɪ1.92%mountain 
ɔ1.63%salt 
ɒ1.23%swallow 
ʌ0.54%wasn't 
ai
100.00%drai
al
100.00%social 
ar
ɑ62.22%har
ə32.96%mustar
ɔ4.81%wardrobe 
au
ɔ97.92%laundry 
a2.08%laugh 
augh
ɔ77.78%daughter 
ɑf22.22%laughter 
aw
ɔ100.00%chainsaw 
b
b100.00%blur 
bb
b100.00%rabbit 
c
k77.19%called 
s22.81%ceiling 
cc
k100.00%broccoli 
ch
45.65%chalk 
k21.30%psychiatrist 
ʃ20.00%butcher 
t͡ʃ13.04%church 
ci
ʃ80.00%politician 
ʃi20.00%species 
ck
k100.00%duck 
d
d100.00%needle 
dd
d100.00%ladder 
don
dn̩100.00%abandon 
e
ɛ43.75%cherry 
ɪ22.88%desert 
ə18.90%came
i8.37%ceiling 
e4.39%helicopter 
ɪə1.70%zero 
ea
i66.67%peach 
ɛ28.46%hea
ɪ2.44%dea
ɪə2.44%idea 
ear
ɜ32.50%hear
ɛə10.00%bear 
ɪə̯7.50%ear 
eau
ju100.00%beauty 
ed
d100.00%used 
ee
i100.00%shee
eigh
100.00%eighteen 
er
ə39.34%dishwasher 
əɹ31.97%butter 
ɜ16.72%detergent 
ɚ11.97%teacher 
eu
ju100.00%feu
ew
ju100.00%newspaper 
ey
i100.00%valley 
f
f100.00%flute 
ff
f100.00%cliff 
g
ɡ62.93%glass 
27.65%pag
ʒ4.48%hedg
d͡ʒ4.19%energ
g0.75%grandmother 
gg
ɡ100.00%egg 
gh
f100.00%laugh 
gion
dʒən100.00%regional 
h
h100.00%heart 
i
ɪ74.61%addition 
15.34%library 
i4.64%serious 
ə3.88%anxious 
j0.76%onion 
ʌɪ0.76%idea 
ie
i100.00%piece 
igh
100.00%thigh 
ir
ɜ55.77%skir
ə44.23%chair 
j
87.62%banj
d͡ʒ12.38%jaw 
k
k100.00%pink 
kn
n100.00%knife 
l
l98.00%class 
ɫ1.39%beautiful 
əl0.60%cruel 
le
əl100.00%kettle 
ll
l100.00%usuall
m
m100.00%tomato 
mm
m100.00%drummer 
n
n96.48%violin 
ŋ3.52%sin
ng
ŋ100.00%singer 
nn
n100.00%bonnet 
o
ə30.58%alcohol 
ɒ26.97%sho
əʊ16.92%note 
o6.88%potato 
ʌ5.85%glove 
ɔ5.28%point 
ɑ5.11%stocking 
u1.55%sho
ʊ0.86%woman 
oa
əʊ49.02%coast 
ɔ31.37%dashboard 
19.61%soa
oe
ʌ100.00%doe
oo
u64.12%foo
ʊ33.59%boo
ʌ2.29%floo
or
ɔ91.63%snoring 
ɜ8.37%wor
ou
74.10%flou
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%favour 
ous
əs100.00%serious 
ow
əʊ56.84%pillow 
43.16%brow
p
p100.00%pilot 
ph
f100.00%geograph
pp
p100.00%napp
ps
s100.00%psychiatrist 
qu
kw77.65%require 
k22.35%liquor 
r
ɹ69.46%rain 
r24.03%grip 
ə3.31%requir
əɹ3.20%during 
rr
ɹ100.00%cherr
s
s81.30%sleep 
z17.28%pajamas 
ʃ0.74%sugar 
ʒ0.69%pleasure 
sh
ʃ100.00%push 
sion
ʒən72.00%television 
ʃən28.00%tension 
ss
s98.17%glass 
ʃ1.83%issue 
ssion
ʃən100.00%commission 
t
t100.00%quit
th
θ68.18%thigh 
ð31.82%grandfather 
tion
ʃən97.69%dictionary 
ʃn̩2.31%addition 
tt
t100.00%bottom 
tu
100.00%furniture 
u
ʌ48.46%ru
ju19.51%music 
ə13.04%beautifu
u7.19%flute 
5.44%during 
ʊ4.93%usually 
ɪ1.44%guitar 
ue
u100.00%blue 
ui
u100.00%juice 
ur
ɜ92.86%furniture 
ɜr7.14%turning 
v
v100.00%television 
w
w95.39%word 
ʊ4.61%rainbow 
wh
ʍ84.62%when 
hw15.38%which 
wr
ɹ100.00%writing 
x
ks84.92%sixteen 
ɡ11.90%exit 
3.17%anxious 
y
i69.47%beauty 
ɪ15.58%seventy 
10.59%psychiatrist 
j4.36%lawyer 
z
z100.00%freezer 
zz
z100.00%jazz