Pronunciation and Phonetics

Learning proper pronunciation can be done without much knowledge of phonetics, actually. A basic knowledge, however, helps to make pronunciation clearer and thus facilitates the process of learning how to speak a foreign language properly.

eAmbalam introduces a phonetic chart which is based on Dhevanagari script. The sounds of vowels and consonants and other speech sounds in Sanskrit and the languages which have completely or mostly borrowed from it can be covered with the help of the chart. A few other sounds common to some languages in this group and outside are also put in. Unique sounds of some languages are specified too.

Diacritical marks are used to aid perfect pronunciation. World over, these marks have been created and propagated by scholars to make understanding of the differences in speech sounds in different languages better. Team eAmbalam also has created a phonetic chart which helps even first timers to pronounce words accurately.

Our Phonetic chart is unique, comprehensive, learner friendly and is divided into four columns wherein:
  • In the first column, the letter is written with the associated diacritical mark.
  • In the second column, an example is given in Dhevanagari language containing the letter.
  • In the third column, an example is given in English, which contains the sound closes to the letter or instructions in few cases, to facilitate better understanding.
  • In the fourth column, an audio button is placed with the help of which you can hear the actual pronunciation of the letter.
An open minded approach with the above introduction and guidelines will definitely enable the user to understand the speech sounds of any language and pronounce it like a native, which is eAmbalam’s aim in this exercise.

Syllable Usage in Sanskrit Usage in English
A or a Aḍavu Arise
Ā or ā Ānanda Vast
I or i Indhira Sing
Ī or ī Īśha Meal
U or u U ṣhā Good
Ū or ū Ū rdhhva Boost
R or r Riṣh i Try
Ṛ or ṛ Ni ṛ uti Grr!
Lr or lr   Pronounce L and R together.
E or e Eka Ate
AI or ai Aikya Sight
O or o Ojas Robe
AU or au Audh ā rya Now
A M or am Śhiva m Drum
A HA or aha R ā ma ha Aha!
Syllable Usage in Sanskrit Usage in English

Syllable Usage in Sanskrit Usage in English
KA or ka Kavi Car
KHA or kha Khalu Mark -Him
GA or ga Gamana Gut
GHA or gha Ghata Ugh!
Ṅ A or ṅa Tura ṅ ga Ring
CHA or ca Chakra Chart
CHHA or cha Chhandas Branch
JA or ja Jagath Jug
JHA or jha Jhallari Fudge
NYA or nya Gnyana Knew
Ṭ A or ṭ Ṭ anka Top
ṬHA or ṭha Pāṭha Pothole
ḌA or da Ḍ amaruka Dog
Ḍ HA or ḍ ha Mūḍ ha Madhouse
Ṇ A or ṇ a Ga ṇ a Wander
THA or tha Thanu Health
THHA or thha Athha Theater
DHA or dha Dha śha This
DHHA or dhha Dhhana m Dha with an additional H sound
NA or na Namask ā raha Nut
PA or pa   Path ā ka Past
PHA or pha Phala m P with a H sound
BA or ba Bandhhu Ball
BHA or bha Bhadra Abhor
MA or ma Manas Money
YA or ya Yama Yummy
RA or ra Rajas Rub
LA or la Lath ā Lust
VA or WA, va /wa A śh va or A śhwa Water/Valour
ŚHA or śha Śhakthi Shutter
ṢHA or ṣ ha Ṣh a ṇ mukha Shunt
SA or sa Sarasvatī Sun
HA or ha Hari Hum
Ḷ A or ḷ a Ar āḷ a Bold
KṢHA or k ṣ ha Ak ṣh i Try to pronounce Ka, Sa & Ha – all at one time.
Extra Vowels in Tamil, Telugu, Kannada & Malayalam Scripts    
É or é Éṇi Angel
Ō or ō Ō m Ō M
ZHA Exclusive to Tamil & Malayalam Fold the tip of your tongue backwards and try to pronounce it with the aid of the audio button.
Syllable Usage in Sanskrit Usage in English

Narasimha Jayanti

According to the Purāṇas, Lord Viṣhṇu appeared as Narasimha on the Chathurdaśhi day in the month of Vaiśhākha and this day is celebrated as Narasimha Jayanthi. Narasimha means half man and half lion. Lord Viṣhṇu took this incarnation to rescue Prahlādha from demon Hiraṇyakaśhipu and it is the fourth avatar of Lord Viṣhṇu. Demon Hiraṇyakaśhipu had obtained a boon from Brahma that he could not be killed either by man or beast, either in day or night, either from inside or outside. Having attained this powerful boon, he conquered heaven, earth and declared himself as God and terrorized people to worship him and not Viṣhṇu.

Hiraṇyakaśhipu’s son Prahlādha was a staunch devotee of Lord and he did not listen to the words of his father. Hiraṇyakaśhipu’s efforts to change his son were in vain. His attempts to kill his son were also not fruitful as Lord Viṣhṇu saved Prahlādha every time. Fed up with his son, he challenged Prahlādha and looking at a stone pillar, asked, ‘If your god is universal, is he in this pillar also?’ Prahlādha answered, ‘He is present in the pillar and even in the rust.’ Hearing this Hiraṇyakaśhipu slashed hard on the pillar with a sword. Suddenly, Lord Viṣhṇu emerged from the pillar in the form of a Narasimha killed the demon by keeping him in his lap and tearing his heart with bare hands thus overcoming the boon that the demon had attained from Brahma.

Devotees fast on Narasimha Jayanthi day and visit Lord Viṣhṇu temples. People also help the needy, offer Annadhānam (donate food to poor). The belief is those people who observe Narasimha Jayanthi vratham shall attain the ‘Vaikunṭha’ – abode of Viṣhṇu.


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