I'm a beginner in my studies of Irish and was wondering if there was a place where I could find a phonetic transcription of the sounds of Irish in the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA). All the books I've seen only give rough English approximations ("the broad ch is like in Yiddish chutzpah") which I don't find too helpful. I'm familiar with the IPA (it's frequently taught in college-level French courses to explain pronunciation) and wondered where I could find similiar transcriptions of Irish sounds.
The "foclóir póca" published by an Gúm for the Irish Government has details of the pronounciation of Irish with IPA symbols, in the preface. You can find out more about the foclóir póca on this website. http://www.litriocht.com you need to click on the education button and you will find it halfway down the page. You can order it too, if you want to.
Ádh mór leis an bhfoghlaim! Good luck with the learning.
Seosamh (tspsl1-159.gate.net - 18.104.22.168)
Posted on Tuesday, November 30, 1999 - 07:41 pm:
There is also a booklet and tape available that explain the pronunciation used in the Foclóir Póca.
Learning Irish, a rigorous introductory Text by Mícheál Ó Siadhail, also uses the IPA for its vocabulary lists. It comes with tapes that have substantial sections on pronunciation. Unlike the Foclóir Póca, this book and tapes are based on a very local dialect, that of Cois Fhairrge in Conamara.
There are advanced studies of other dialects that use the IPA, as well as Ó Siadhail's book on variation in general in Irish dialects. I don't have the title handy. It's very useful for advanced students.