Burmese: Voice

Discussion in 'Other Languages' started by DVBurma, Mar 5, 2013.

  1. DVBurma New Member

    Illinois, USA
    English - United States
    For a project, I need to know the phonetic pronunciation of the English word "voice" in Burmese. As in Voice meaning "the sound or sounds uttered through the mouth of living creatures, especially of human beings in speaking, shouting, singing, etc." According to burmese-dictionary [dot] org, the Burmese characters for voice look like this: "picpaste [dot] com [slash] WgulRjJA.png" and attached image. I have literally no idea how to pronounce this. There are no resources for me to romanize it, and I have already tried looking at phonetic dictionaries with no success (Burmese is a language in which symbols compound and dramatically change the meaning). I would really appreciate if anyone could take the time to let me know how this is pronounced in English. Thanks so much and happy wording!

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    Last edited: Mar 5, 2013
  2. J.F. de TROYES Senior Member


    First I wish to welcome you on this forum.

    Unfortunately there is so far not one system of romanization that perfectly matches the sounds of Burmese . I don’t know much Burmese , but I’ve studied its spelling and pronunciation.

    The phonetic transcription စကးပြောအသံ is / zəgɑ̀ːpjɔ əθɛ̃ /
    and by using the English spelling the word can be written this way : zegà pyaw ethaN , where the e of zegà is pronounced as a in acute [ə ] and the second as a in father , but with a higher tone than the other sounds ( the voice starting high, then falling for a fairly long time, something like saying car ) . No problem for pyaw. In ethaN e = [ə ] , th = th of thing , aN is a nasalised vowel like that found in French : aN is pronounced about the same way as ain in pain ( bread in French ).

    Actually this word is a compound ( it’s quite usual in Burmese ) where the chief component is ethaN that means sound ; zegà pyaw means to speak (word + to say ) . So when the context is enough to make it clear, the only အသံ ( ethaN ) can be used to express the word voice ; if not, စကးပြော (zegà pyaw) is being added.

    Don't hesitate to ask further information.

  3. DVBurma New Member

    Illinois, USA
    English - United States
    Thank you very much! I very much appreciate your help. That is all I needed to know.

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