Yes there is, it's rather complex. Basically, "ve" is the default. It becomes "u" before a schwa, and before bet, vav, mem and pe. I think that's the most frequent change. At school I learned to memorise it as "bumaf" בומ"ף and it sound as silly in Hebrew as it does in English. :-) Before אני it becomes "va" because the alef in אני has a diacritic sign that sounds just like any other "a" sound but it does that thing to the vav of conjunction because it just does. There are a few more changes but there are not so frequent.
Almog, thank you so much for all of this. I've got some formal hebrew training from synagogue and university and am using other resources as well as duolingo but have been confused by how often the male speaker in this course pronounces Vav in ways other than ve. Perhaps duolingo should address this in some way? Either way, I wrote down everything you explained as it's very useful. תודה רבה
Thank you for the answer. I knew that Vav has a "U" sound before labial (M, P/F, B/V) consonants. But the "Va" is kinda trickier to understand. I have studied it a year ago (and I forgot it all, lol), but I did it using niqqud. So now, I am very very confused on how the natives can distinguish so many grammar things which are distinguished with niqqud, but they still do it, but without niqqud.
I knew Duolingo would be happy with "She is hungry and I am not hungry." Just for fun I tried putting in "She is hungry and I am not," because that is perfectly good English. Its meaning cannot be misunderstood, and in fact is probably preferable because we prefer to leave out redundant words. Unfortunately they marked it wrong.
Its because he is not prouncing it. The speaker descends from Askenazi jews where the roll the r in the back of their throats. Its like they talk with french accents. Sephardics, temani, and mizrachi all pronounce the resh correctly. I have no idea why they chose this man for a beginner language course. His tone isnt very neutral.
Jeremiah, if Ashkenazis pronounce r one way and Sephardi, Temani and Mizrachi pronounce the r another way, what would be a neutral r?
When America and British pronunciation started to develop distinctive differences hundreds of years ago, at what point did the American pronunciation stop being wrong, if it were ever wrong?
Typically the only people who defend the Ashkenazi pronunciation are Ashkenazi and Zionists. You clearly didn't grow up going to shul. Religious jews all over the world pronounce hebrew more or the less the same way. Most jews have adopted the sephardic pronunciation for two reasons: it sounds nicer and it is easier to understand.
When I go to shul or i lay tefilllin and pray I understand the hebrew fine. Only when I hear Israelis speak to I have issues with comprehension. I am not the only one complaining about it either. I have spoke with jews from various different backgrounds who complain about the Israeli accent.
When modern hebrew was first being 'created' the sephardic dialect was chosen for a reason. The speak on the his app is most certainly not sephardic. His kaf, qof, and chet all sounds the same. He rolls his r's in the back of his throat and you can't tell the difference between his ayin and his aleph. These are ashkenazi accents marks. If they were using the sephardic dialect it would be much easier to understand.