Quick Pronounciation Guide

Japanese is the easiest language in the world to pronounce. There are no weird things like silent vowels or anything. Everything syllable is basically pronounced the same way, every time. There are only a few things to remember:

(1) It’s L, not R. Rs in Japanese are pronounced like “soft” Ls. They are closer to the English L than the English R, but they aren’t quite as hard.

(2) Double consonants signal a pause. For example, date has no pause and is pronounced “dah’-teh,” but datte is pronounced “dah’-(pause)-teh.”

(3) Double vowels mean that the vowel should take twice as long to pronounce. Deeto, the japanese word for “date (i.e. go on a date),” should be pronounced with a prolonged e, or “daaay’-toh.” In Japanese writing, if the same vowel is repeated twice, this is often signified by dashes. If two vowels (not necessarily the same vowel) are side by side, the same thing happens. The word imouto is pronounced with a long-ish emphasis on the mou, and sounds like “ee-mooooow’-toh.”

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