https://www.duolingo.com/profile/TseDanylo

Ukrainian Alphabet [UK. GRAMMAR PORTAL]

Вітаю!

Ukrainian is an East Slavic language spoken primarily in Western Ukraine and Central Ukraine by 40 million people making it the third most spoken Slavic language by number of native speakers in the world!

Alphabet

Ukrainian is written in a variant of the Cyrillic alphabet (like Russian, Serbian, etc.). It consists of 33 letters some of which are similar to the Latin ones. Below is all 23 consonants and 10 vowels following this template:

  • Uppercase Lowercase - Letter Name - Closest English Equivalent

УКРАЇНСЬКА АБЕТКА

  • А а - ah - Cat
  • Б б - beh - Book
  • В в - weh/veh - Vet/When*
  • Г г - heh - How
  • Ґ ґ - geh - Gate
  • Д д - deh - Door
  • Е е - eh - Red
  • Є є - yeh - Yes
  • Ж ж - zheh - Measure
  • З з - zeh - Zoo
  • И и - ih - PIt (but longer)
  • І і - ee - Meet
  • Ї ї - yih - Year (but longer
  • Й й - yot - Yes
  • К к - kah - Couch
  • Л л - el - Loose
  • М м - em - Moose
  • Н н - en - No
  • О о - oh - Goat
  • П п - peh - Put
  • Р р - er - Like the thrilled r in Spanish or Italian
  • С с - es - Soon
  • Т т -te - Take
  • У у - oo - Do
  • Ф ф - ef - Forget
  • Х х - kha - ch in the Scottisch "loch"
  • Ц ц - tse - Cats
  • Ч ч - cheh - Chase
  • Ш ш - shah - Shy
  • Щ щ - shcha - Strong/Fish ch*urch
  • ь -myakih znak (м’який знак) - Softens the previous consonant (more below)
  • Ю ю - yoo - You
  • Я я - yah - Yard
  • ' - apostrof (апостроф) - Strengthens the following vowel (more below)

В can be pronounced the initial sound at the start of when or in vet* but most people ignore this rule and pronounce it like a V. It is usually pronounced the W at the start of a word, before of a consonant or at the end of a word.

М’який знак

The м’який знак (ь) makes some consonants sound softer, as if there was a y sound before it (even though there isn't). So below will be a pronunciation exercise to help you learn the difference. But first, here is the list of consonants that have a different sound after the м’який знак.

  • Нн
  • Тт
  • Дд
  • Цц
  • Дз дз (pronounced like Meds, not a letter but still has a unique sound)
  • Сс
  • Зз
  • Лл
  • Рр

Pronuncation Exercise

Try saying these phonetic English sounds and compare the way your tongue goes in each one. (Note the r is a thrill like Spanish unlike English). Also, try to pronounce them as one syllable, if you don't know how; Put your thumb on your chin and try to make your your chin only goes down once.

  • Nah - Nyah
  • Tah - Tyah
  • Dah - Dyah
  • Tsah - Tsyah
  • Dzah - Dzyah
  • Sah - Syah
  • Zah - Zyah
  • Lah - Lyah
  • Rah - Ryah

The first one is how you pronounce the initial sound followed by -а (на), the second (minus the -ah) is what it sounds like after м’який знак (нь)

Апостроф

The апосроф' (apostrophe), emphasises/stresses the vowel after it and stops softing of consonants (like the acute á accent in Spanish and the hard sign in Russian combined). Here are some examples:

М'ясо (meat) - pronounced: mYAHsoh Комп'ютер (computer) - pronounced: komPYOOter

Video

This video shows the pronunciation and examples for all 33 letters.

Introduction To Ukrainian Grammar

The Grammar Portal

The Language Portal

September 10, 2016

18 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Bobboski

Very clear and accurate post!

September 10, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/TseDanylo

Thank you :)

September 10, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Alan2k02

Thanks for the post !!!

September 11, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/TseDanylo

No problem :)

September 11, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BhabaniPrasad

very very helpfull and thanks 4 d post

September 12, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/TseDanylo

You are very welcome :)

September 12, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BhabaniPrasad

it could be best if there is an ukrainian example to understand the letter.

September 16, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/TseDanylo

This video is great for that actually

September 16, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BhabaniPrasad

thank u so so much..

September 18, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/TseDanylo

No problem :)

September 18, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/anas356803

interesting

December 26, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/VimZeNevim

Thanks! Díky! :-)

February 16, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/TseDanylo

Нема за що!

February 16, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/xxxAllyxx

really good and helpful

June 2, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/HosseinMalekSaba

This language is Wonderful!

January 11, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Alejandroriano3

This post was incredibly helpful. Thank you so much!

June 10, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SantiagoChau

Sorry, the ь in Ukrainian sounds as a "ya" like if I just put нь it sounds "Nya"

December 31, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/TseDanylo

No, it really doesn't. That would be spelt "ня" for example "кухня" (kitchen) "нь" is basically "ня" without the "а"

December 31, 2016
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