How to pronounce my name?

My name is Luke Nicholson. You can listen to the pronunciation below:

IPA symbols

We can represent my name using IPA symbols as follows: ˌluːk ˈnɪkəlsən

These symbols aren’t as tricky to decipher as you might think. You can use my free charts for vowels and consonants to listen to the symbols.

A quick guide

  • The symbol that looks like a comma ˌ shows secondary stress
  • The symbol that looks like an apostrophe ˈ shows primary stress
  • l = like the sound in like
  • = like the sound in goose
  • k = like the sound in back
  • n = like the sound in night
  • ɪ = like the sound in kit
  • k = like the sound in back
  • ə = like the sound in about
  • l = like the sound in feel
  • s = like the sound in so
  • ə = like the sound in about
  • n = like the sound in night

More complicated

The above transcription is fairly broad (i.e. without lots of phonetic detail). We can transcribe it more narrowly (i.e. with more phonetic detail) as follows: ˌlʉk̚ ˈnɪkəɫsən

  • ʉ indicates a central vowel. It’s central rather than back because that’s the vowel people usually use nowadays in southern England. Note that it’s not ʉː. That’s because the vowel is shorter due to the following k (this is known as pre-fortis clipping).
  • indicates this consonant has no audible release. However, it can be audibly released in slower, more careful speech and it is audibly released in the audio above.
  • ɫ indicates a Dark L (velarized L). It’s different to the sound at the beginning of Luke.

This transcription is true for my accent, but my name is pronounced differently in other accents!