How do you pronounce the letter ע (Ayin)?

User avatar
Posts: 10669
Joined: 2010-03-20, 5:27
Gender: male
Location: Toronto
Country: CA Canada (Canada)

Re: How do you pronounce the letter ע (Ayin)?

Postby mōdgethanc » 2016-11-30, 21:48

Eastbury wrote:My native language is Arabic. However, after doing some research on the subject, I believe that the origin of Arabic language and the scriptural Hebrew language is very similar
They both come from an undocumented language that is called Proto-Semitic by scholars.
A third example is the letter ( ח ) which is the equivalent of [خ]. Fortunately, this letter exists in other languages as well such as Spanish, German, UK and Irish Gaelic, etc. If it happens that you know the singer Julio Iglesias, this phonic exists in the first letter of his first name (julio), pronounced by Spanish people (Europeans don't know how to pronounce his name at all).
It's actually the equivalent of <ح> and that's how it was once pronounced. The pronunciation like <خ> is more recent.
Arabic as it's spoken today is just a continuation of a more ancient root such as Aramaic, Amharic, classic Hebrew, etc. These languages were truly one language with different dialects but are perceived nowadays to be different in essence because of political and religious reasons.
Arabic and Hebrew are not mutually intelligible, are they? I doubt they were even in ancient times. For comparison, English and Dutch come from the same proto-language and have a lot of similarities but nobody considers them dialects of one language.

Posts: 1
Joined: 2016-12-26, 2:56
Real Name: Anthony
Gender: male

Re: How do you pronounce the letter ע (Ayin)?

Postby An6oni » 2016-12-26, 3:12

0stsee wrote:When learning I'm used to pronounce ע as an ng sound just like in singer so that it's easier for me to remember when I write. :D

But when I speak I usually end up pronouncing it like א or even like Arabic ع.

I do something similarly to you, where I'll pronounce the ע as in Arabic when I'm studying and as an א when I'm speaking just to learn words more easily.

Also, you might find it interesting that the ng pronunciation of ע is actually a feature of the little-known Italian pronunciation of Hebrew, according to Wikipedia:


Re: How do you pronounce the letter ע (Ayin)?

Postby Brzeczyszczykiewicz » 2020-04-23, 5:53

Being one of those who actually like the sound of Arabic "ع", I always pronounce Hebrew "ע" the same way, while also being aware that for many Modern Hebrew speakers it's just the same as an "א".

Mind you, it was definitely the hardest Arabic sound for me to master, being non-existent in all of the other languages I already knew by the time I took up Arabic and Hebrew, but I think it has its advantages, too, pronouncing "ע" the "Arabic" way, because it allows you to more easily tell otherwise homophonic words apart, such as "אור" and "עור" or "אם" and "עם".

Hell, I even have a go, from time to time, at pronouncing "ק", "ט" and "ח" as they were originally meant to be, with very fun and even cute results. :D

Return to “Hebrew (עברית)”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest