THE MUSEUM OF FAMILY HISTORY
EDUCATION AND RESEARCH CENTER
 presents

Guide to Pronunciation
AS TOLD BY THE NATIVE SPEAKER

Romania and Moldova
Language: Romanian
 

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To the non-native speaker, the proper pronunciation of words in a foreign language may be a daunting task. Many of us can remember traveling to a foreign country and trying unsuccessfully to communicate with others in their native tongue. Here, an effort has been made to aid those interested in learning the correct pronunciation of various town and city names, as spoken by those native to that particular country. These lists will be augmented and new lists will be added over time.

The  pronunciations for the locations in Romania and Moldova have been placed within a single sound "clip" (a wav file.) Each name is spoken once, and is then repeated several seconds later. You  may be able to pause, go forwards or backwards, or even play it again depending on your computer's media  player. It should be noted that the Romanian language is spoken in both Romania and Moldova.

The particular towns and cities listed below have been chosen because their names appear within the museum's website. Left-click onto the earphones icon to begin the recording.

Romania and Moldova:

Alba Iulia
Bacau

Braila
Bucuresty
Chişinău

Cimpulung

Cluj Napoca
Constanza

Dorna Vatrai

Dorohoi
Falticeni

Fratauti

Galati

Gura Humora

Iasi

Negulesti

Piatra Neamt

Ploiesti
Radauti
Roman
Sadgura
Satu Mare
Seletin

Sereth
Storojinet
Straja
Suceava
Tirgu Mures
Wiznitz

VOWELS

A, a   - a as in father
Ă, ă   - a as in around
,   - i as in girl (see )
E, e   - e as in let
I, i   - i as in machine
,   - i as in girl
O, o   - o as in note; also o as in gone
U, u   - u as in duke

 

                          CONSONANTS

C, c   - c as in cello (ch) when before E or I, otherwise c as in cat
Ch, ch   - ch as in chaos (k)
G, g   - g as in germ (j) when before E or I, otherwise g as in go
Gh, gh   - gh as in ghost (g)
J, j   - z as in azure (zh)
Ş, ş   - s as in sugar
Ţ, ţ   - tz as in quartz (ts)
 

DIPHTHONGS AND TRIPHTHONGS

The Romanian language has many diphthongs (and triphthongs), which are pronounced separately but in rapid succession. The weaker vowel almost becomes semiconsonantal. Examples are:
 
ai   - ai as in kaiser
au   - au as in sauerkraut
ău   - a as in about combined with u as in flute
ea   - ea as in bread
ei   - ei as in seine
eu   - eu as in feud
ia   - ya as in yacht
ie   - ye as in yes
io   - yo as in yoke
iu   - yu as in yule
i   - i as in hike
u   - similar to eu in feud
oa   - wa as in wash
oi   - oi as in spheroid
ou   - ou as in dough
  - wu as in wuther
eai   - yi as in yikes
eau   - yow as in yowl
ieu   - ieu as in lieu
The letter i at the end of a word is silent unless preceded by another letter i.
 

COMBINATIONS

Ci, ci   - chi as in chief
Ce, ce   - che as in chess
Chi, chi   - chi as in Chianti
Ghe, ghe   - ghe as in ghetto
Ghi, ghi   - gee as in geese
Ge, ge   - ge as in genesis
Gi, gi   - gi as in giraffe

A
n online English-Romanian Dictionary can be found at
http://www.babylon.com/define/117/Dictionary-English-Romanian.html.

 

*The pronunciation tables above can be found at www.phantomranch.net/folkdanc/alphabet/romanian.htm.




 

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