Ecclesiastical Latin Pronunciation Guide

Pronouncing Church Latin is very different from pronouncing American English, and on the whole, much simpler. The most important thing to remember about Ecclesiastical Latin is the vowels, which are described immediately below. (Spanish-speakers rejoice!)


A = ahh E = eh I = eee O = oh U = ooo Y = eee

Vowel groups (Diphthongs)

ae = eh au = ow (as in cow) eu = ow (as in cow) oe = eh


C = “kuh” before A, O, U “chuh” before E, I, AE, OE

G = “guh” before A, O, U “juh” before E, I, AE, OE

H = silent (except between vowels! Then like “k,” as in mihimeekee, nihilneekeel)

J = yuh

R = rolled like Spanish or nasal like French/German

S = sss (not z)

X = ks

Z = dz

Consonant groups

cc = tch before e, i ch = kuh gn = nyuh ph = f th = t xc = ksh, before e, i, y

Consonant & vowel combinations

(This one is a little tricky!)

ti = ts before a vowel unless s, x, or t precedes it (For example, tentationem is tayhn-tahts-eee-oh-nehm but hostia is ohs-tee-ah)


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