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.

Learn
Spelling

Spelling IPA Frequency Example
a
æ33.88%blanket 
ə28.99%usually 
20.57%cave 
ɑ5.03%garage 
ɛ3.47%airplane 
a2.75%cast 
ɪ1.92%chocolate 
ɔ1.63%wall 
ɒ1.23%yacht 
ʌ0.54%wasn't 
ai
100.00%drai
al
100.00%social 
ar
ɑ62.22%farmer 
ə32.96%mustar
ɔ4.81%wardrobe 
au
ɔ97.92%sauce 
a2.08%laugh 
augh
ɔ77.78%daughter 
ɑf22.22%laughing 
aw
ɔ100.00%jaw 
b
b100.00%bee 
bb
b100.00%rabbit 
c
k77.19%cabbage 
s22.81%decision 
cc
k100.00%accountant 
ch
45.65%touch 
k21.30%psychological 
ʃ20.00%stretcher 
t͡ʃ13.04%church 
ci
ʃ80.00%musician 
ʃi20.00%species 
ck
k100.00%necklace 
d
d100.00%bend 
dd
d100.00%ladder 
don
dn̩100.00%abandoned 
e
ɛ43.75%egg 
ɪ22.88%eleven 
ə18.90%peninsula 
i8.37%ceiling 
e4.39%engineer 
ɪə1.70%zero 
ea
i66.67%pea 
ɛ28.46%brea
ɪ2.44%dea
ɪə2.44%idea 
ear
ɜ32.50%hear
ɛə10.00%bear 
ɪə̯7.50%ear 
eau
ju100.00%beauty 
ed
d100.00%abandoned 
ee
i100.00%shee
eigh
100.00%eighty 
er
ə39.34%laughter 
əɹ31.97%driver 
ɜ16.72%detergent 
ɚ11.97%teacher 
eu
ju100.00%feu
ew
ju100.00%newspaper 
ey
i100.00%chimney 
f
f100.00%ferry 
ff
f100.00%cliff 
g
ɡ62.93%glass 
27.65%orang
ʒ4.48%hedg
d͡ʒ4.19%charg
g0.75%grandmother 
gg
ɡ100.00%egg 
gh
f100.00%laugh 
gion
dʒən100.00%religion 
h
h100.00%hunter 
i
ɪ74.61%drink 
15.34%fine 
i4.64%pedestrian 
ə3.88%animal 
j0.76%onion 
ʌɪ0.76%idea 
ie
i100.00%believe 
igh
100.00%thigh 
ir
ɜ55.77%gir
ə44.23%stair
j
87.62%jeans 
d͡ʒ12.38%juice 
k
k100.00%key 
kn
n100.00%kneel 
l
l98.00%plug 
ɫ1.39%silver 
əl0.60%cruel 
le
əl100.00%bicycle 
ll
l100.00%wall 
m
m100.00%mother-in-law 
mm
m100.00%hammer 
n
n96.48%candy 
ŋ3.52%drin
ng
ŋ100.00%during 
nn
n100.00%tunnel 
o
ə30.58%potato 
ɒ26.97%fo
əʊ16.92%social 
o6.88%motorcycle 
ʌ5.85%so
ɔ5.28%appointment 
ɑ5.11%hospital 
u1.55%cano
ʊ0.86%woman 
oa
əʊ49.02%toaster 
ɔ31.37%blackboard 
19.61%soa
oe
ʌ100.00%doe
oo
u64.12%roo
ʊ33.59%foo
ʌ2.29%floo
or
ɔ91.63%stormy 
ɜ8.37%wor
ou
74.10%mouse 
u13.67%sou
ʌ11.51%cousin 
ɑʊ0.72%found 
ough
ɔ69.23%though
ʌf30.77%tough 
oul
ʊ100.00%woul
our
ɔɹ83.33%four 
əɹ16.67%favour 
ous
əs100.00%serious 
ow
əʊ56.84%elbow 
43.16%towel 
p
p100.00%spoon 
ph
f100.00%photographer 
pp
p100.00%appointment 
ps
s100.00%psychological 
qu
kw77.65%quite 
k22.35%liquor 
r
ɹ69.46%brown 
r24.03%crimson 
ə3.31%requir
əɹ3.20%temperatur
rr
ɹ100.00%mirror 
s
s81.30%song 
z17.28%doesn't 
ʃ0.74%sugar 
ʒ0.69%pleasure 
sh
ʃ100.00%shovel 
sion
ʒən72.00%television 
ʃən28.00%pension 
ss
s98.17%tissue 
ʃ1.83%pressure 
ssion
ʃən100.00%mission 
t
t100.00%stand 
th
θ68.18%throat 
ð31.82%grandmother 
tion
ʃən97.69%dictionary 
ʃn̩2.31%addition 
tt
t100.00%lettuce 
tu
100.00%temperature 
u
ʌ48.46%clutch 
ju19.51%pupil 
ə13.04%pleasure 
u7.19%prune 
5.44%security 
ʊ4.93%push 
ɪ1.44%guitar 
ue
u100.00%crue
ui
u100.00%juice 
ur
ɜ92.86%nurse 
ɜr7.14%turning 
v
v100.00%level 
w
w95.39%twelve 
ʊ4.61%rainbow 
wh
ʍ84.62%wh
hw15.38%which 
wr
ɹ100.00%writing 
x
ks84.92%saxophone 
ɡ11.90%exactly 
3.17%anxious 
y
i69.47%balcony 
ɪ15.58%boy 
10.59%butterfly 
j4.36%yacht 
z
z100.00%magazine 
zz
z100.00%puzzle