Slovak SAMPA

Vowels (14+1)

In Standard Slovak there are long and short vowels.

Long vowels (5):

SAMPA Symbol             Orthography                   Transcription                 English gloss

i:                                         víaz                                  vi:cas                                winner

e:                                        gén                                    ge:n                                   gene

a:                                        pohár                                poha:r                               cup, glass

o:                                       katalóg                              katalo:k                             catalogue

u:                                       múr                                    mu:r                                   wall             

Short vowels 

SAMPA Symbol             Orthography                   Transcription                 English gloss

i                                          pivo                                   pivo                                   beer

e                                         meno                                 meno                                 name

a                                         kapitola                             kapitola                             chapter

o                                        noha                                  noha                                  leg

u                                        bubon                               bubon                               drum

{                                        päta                                   p{ta                                  foot, heel 

Note: The phoneme '{' is used only in literary style and usually it is replaced with 'e'.

Diphtongs (4):

SAMPA Symbol             Orthography                   Transcription                 English gloss

i_^a                                   piatok                                pi_^atok                           Friday

i_^e                                   mier                                   mi_^er                               peace

i_^u                                   paniu                                 paJi_^u                             lady (acc. sg. form)

u_^o                                  kô                                    ku_^oJ                              horse


Consonants (38)

The Standard Slovak consonantal system comprises 17 sonorants, 8 fricatives, 9 plosives and 4 affricates.

Sonorants: (17)

The sonorants are all voiced and do not have voiceless counterparts.

SAMPA Symbol             Orthography                   Transcription                 English gloss

r                                         para                                   para                                   steam

r =                                      vrch                                   vr=x                                   hill, top

r =:                                     vba                                   vr=:ba                               willow

l                                          skala                                  skala                                  rock

l =                                      vlk                                     vl=k                                   wolf

l =:                                     va                                   vl=:tSa                              young wolf

L                                        ad                                     Lad                                    ice

m                                        mama                                 mama                                 mother

F                                        amfiteáter                         aFfitea:ter                         amphitheatre

n                                        rana                                   rana                                   wound

N\                                      Slovensko                        sloveN\sko                      Slovakia  

N                                        banka                                baNka                               bank

J                                         vaa                                  vaJa                                   bath-tub

v                                        slovo                                 slovo                                 word 

u_^                                    kov                                    kou_^                                metal

i_^                                     kraj                                    krai_^                                region

j                                          jama                                   jama                                   pit


Obstruents (21)

The non-sonorants undergo changes of voice according to their position. Voiced obstruents can stand only before vowels, sonorants and   other voiced obstruents in the same word. Final obstruents are obligatorily voiceless. Prepositions, however, are treated as enclitics, belonging phonetically to the following word, and may therefore end with a voiced obstruent.

·        Plosives (8): There are three voiceless plosives, /p t k/, and three voiced, /b d g/.

SAMPA Symbol                   Orthography                   Transcription                 English gloss

p                                              popol                                popol                                ash

b                                              aba                                   Zaba                                  frog

t                                               vata                                   vata                                   cotton-wool

c                                              Mao                                maco                                 Mathew

d                                              voda                                  voda                                  water

J\                                             háa                                  ha:J\a                                young snake

k                                              páka                                  pa:ka                                 lever   

g                                              guma                                 guma                                 rubber


·        Fricatives (9):
The fricatives are f s S x (voiceless) and z Z (voiced).

SAMPA Symbol                   Orthography                   Transcription                 English gloss

f                                               figa                                    figa                                    fig

w                                             vdova                               wdova                               widow

s                                              osa                                    osa                                    wasp

z                                              zima                                   zima                                   winter

S                                              šek                                     Sek                                    cheque

Z                                             vea                                   veZa                                  tower

x                                             chata                                 xata                                    cottage

h                                              Praha                                 praha                                 Prague

G                                             vrch hory                        vr=G hori                            mountain summit

·        Affricates (4):
The affricates are ts tS (voiceless) and dz dZ (voiced).

SAMPA Symbol                   Orthography                   Transcription                 English gloss

ts                                             cena                                  tsena                                 price

tS                                            oi                                     otSi                                    eyes

dz                                            medza                                medza                                balk

dZ                                           dunga                            dZuNgLa                         jungle


Stress and Accent

In Standard Slovak, the stress is on the first syllable of a word.



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Last modified: October 17, 2000