usually pronounced the same as 'e', but when it is accented due to grammar, such as in words like 'geëet' which means 'to have eaten', it can be pronounced three other ways: meet, fear or wet
as in bit
as in fort or mood or boy
as in cauldron
as in u in hut with rounded lips
as in to'ey' in hey
in 'a' as in 'a dog' or 'a song'. This is the article; it is never capitalised even if used at the start of a sentence: the word that follows is capitalised.
Note that Afrikaans pronunciation is extremely difficult and can be a challenge, even for Dutch speakers.
as in bat
as in king (uncommon, usually proper nouns eg 'Coetzee'
as in dance but pronounced as English 't' at the end of words
as in fan
similarly to the 'ch' in bach, but a lot harder and more glottal - a bit like hawking up phlegm :-).
as in hat
as in yak
as in king
as in lamp
as in man
as in nap
as in pet
as in rant, but the sound is rolled
as in set
as in tale
same as the English 'f'
pronounced the same as the English 'v' as in vet
as in fix but extremely rare, usually found in scientific terms or loanwords.
as in blitz
In some loan words, 'g', 'v' and 'w' may be pronounced the same as their English equivalents, but this is uncommon.
Digraphs and trigraphs
as in father
two sounds, one after another, quite quickly. Starts as 'aa' and is quickly finished off with the Afrikaans 'a' as in dust
can be pronounced in three ways: loch or shine or king
as in cane
as in man
as in machine
as in fear
as in fear but pronounced as two separate sounds. Sounds almost like 'ee-ye'
same as eë
as is sale
pronounced two ways: as in ear or as in mew
same as English 'gh'. For example: ghost
as in lamp
as in mend
pronounced either as long 'ee' like in breed or as 'i' in sick
as in pick 'n pay
as in sing
as in think
pronounced either as the long 'oo' as in loot or as a short 'oo' as in foot
as in English doer
same as German "ü", make your lips into the position of "o" but say "ee" instead.
as in coat
like farse, but the 'r' is rolled
as in chunk
combined with ie as in kid
also a unique sound. Sounds like play but with pouted lips. The name shane is the closest english equivalent
similar to German über but pronounced with more emphasis and much longer. Identical to the final 'yy' sound
like the 'y' in shy, but a pronounced a lot longer.
A unique trigraph. The closest English equivalent is the English word ewe. Try blending the sounds 'ew' and 'oo'
similar to phooey but pronounced with a rapid 'w' in it
similar to oil but pronounced with a rapid 'w' in it
similar to player but pronounced much longer
Note on Afrikaans
Like English, double consonants in Afrikaans are pronounced as a single sound, and not two separate sounds, unless occurring at a syllabary break: 'wekker': 'vack-er' (alarm clock) but 'melkkoei': 'melk-koo-ee' (milking cow).
Note that although Afrikaans digraphs and trigraphs contain mostly vowels and sound as though they contain many syllables, they in fact are seen as a single syllable.
For example, the word 'Goeie' sounds as if it contains 3 syllables, but in fact contains only two: 'goei' and 'e' are the 2 syllables.
From this, you can see Afrikaans pronunciation, like English for a foreigner, can be rather irregular. Pronunciation can be hard and the accent is extremely difficult to master, but when spoken correctly, Afrikaans is the most melodic Germanic language.
However, one should not be daunted. Afrikaans grammar is really quite simple and is more similar to English than to any other Germanic language. Verbs are even simpler than English: there is no am or are or were but only is and was.
One who is learning Afrikaans will probably catch onto it rather quickly and will have no problem with speaking Dutch or understanding German.
Important differences between Dutch and Afrikaans
A rukkie in Afrikaans is a short period of time, not a sexual act performed on oneself.
Common use examples are Ek gaan 'n rukkie slaap or Ek sal oor 'n rukkie daar wees
Baie means veel (many); however, the word veel also exists in Afrikaans and has the same meaning.
Here / Mans
Dames / Vrouens
Goeie dag. ("...")
How are you?
Hoe gaan dit? ("...")
Fine, thank you.
Goed, dankie. ("...")
What is your name?
Wat is jou naam? ("...")
My name is ______.
My naam is ______. ("...")
Nice to meet you.
Aangename kennis. ("...")
Dis 'n plesier. ("...")
Excuse me. (getting attention)
Verskoon my. ("...")
Excuse me. (begging pardon)
Verskoon my / Jammer. ("...")
Ek is jammer. ("...")
I can't speak Afrikaans [well].
Ek kan nie [ goed ] Afrikaans praat nie. ("...")
Do you speak English?
Praat jy Engels? ("...")
Is there someone here who speaks English?
Is hier iemand wat Engels praat? ("...")
Goeie môre. ("...")
Goeie naand. ("...")
Good night. (to sleep)
Goeie nag. ("...")
I don't understand.
Ek verstaan nie. ("...")
Where is the toilet?
Waar is die toilet? ("...")
I am wearing jeans.
Ek dra 'n denim broek. ("...")
Leave me alone.
Laat my met rus.
Los my uit.
Don't touch me!
Moenie aan my vat nie!
Moenie aan my raak nie
I'll call the police.
Ek sal die polisie roep/bel. (...)
Stop! Dief! (...)
I need your help.
Ek het u hulp nodig. Ek benodig u/jou hulp. (...)
It's an emergency.
Dit is 'n noodgeval. (...)
Ek is verdwaald. (...)
I lost my bag.
Ek het my sak verloor. (...)
I lost my wallet.
Ek het my beursie verloor. (...)
Ek is siek. (...)
I've been injured.
Ek is beseer. (...)
I need a doctor.
Ek het 'n doktor nodig. (...)
Can I use your phone? (formal)
Mag ek u telefoon gebruik?
Can I use your phone? (informal)
Mag ek jou telefoon gebruik?
ag ("...") / agt ("...")
neëntig / negentig ("...")
een miljoen ("...")
een miljard ("...") Note the difference with American English numbers.