Historical charts of the International Phonetic Alphabet

Natalie Udomkesmalee

UCLA
June 2018

This document presents all versions and revisions of the International Phonetic Alphabet charts published throughout the Maître Phonétique and supplements to the journal from 1886-1970, including other notable charts and diagrams. Links to downloadable files of the digitized charts are also provided.
Main charts:
  • The Phonetic Teacher
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  • The Principles of the International Phonetic Association
  • L’Écriture Phonétique Internationale
  •  
  • Lautzeichen und ihre Anwendung in verschiedenen Fachgebieten
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  • Principles of the International Phonetic Association
  •  
Other charts:
 
Download .zip:
 
◄◄

1888 Alphabet

►►
Note: first version of the International Phonetic Alphabet as published in “The Phonetic Teacher”
Source: Maître Phonétique, vol.3, Aug.-Sept. 1888
Images: chart only | page scan
  • “the letters marked with a star* are provisional shapes, and will be replaced when circumstances will allow”
 
◄◄

1899 Alphabet

►►
Note: first full alphabet revision with descriptive labels
Source: Maître Phonétique, vol.14, Feb. 1899
Images: chart only | page scan
Translation:
German IPA German English gloss
diːsər Dießer ‘noiser’
ʔɛŋ eng ‘close’
fliːsər Fließer ‘flower’
klɪŋər Klinger ‘sounder’
lɪpənʃtɛlᴜŋ Lippenstellung ‘lip shape’
mɪtəl mittel ‘medium’
næːzlər Näseler ‘nasaler’
German IPA German English gloss
raibər Reiber ‘grater’
rɔlər Roller ‘roller’
zeːr ʔɛŋ sehr eng ‘very close’
zeːr vait sehr weit ‘very open’
ʃpɛrər Sperrer ‘stopper’
vait weit ‘open’
tsᴜŋənlɑɡe Zungenlage ‘tongue position’
  • the translations, kindly provided by Professor Adrian Simpson, are based on definitions given in Kleines frühneuhochdeutsches Wörterbuch (1996)
  • some labels for this alphabet use terminology that are no longer part of German phonetics
Chart revisions:
Symbol Added Category
ʜ ʁ ɹ ʃ ʋ fricatives
ɢ ɡ plosives
ˈ ŋ ɲ nasals
ɫ liquid
‘rolled’ consonant
ɑ ä open
ʌ open-mid
ø ë mid
ʏ ɪ close-mid
ɯ ï close
Symbol Removed  
*œ
*a
*ɶ
   
Symbol Revised Category
c voiceless postalveolar fricative > voiceless palatal plosive
Format revisions:
  • parentheses to indicate secondary articulation
  • symbols organized by consonants and vowels, and place and manner of articulation
 
◄◄

1900 Chart

►►
Note: first full IPA chart
Source: Maître Phonétique, vol.15, 1900, “Exposé des principes de l’Association Phonétique Internationale”
Images: chart only | page scan
Translation:
French English gloss
consonnes ‘consonants’
fermées ‘close’
fricatives ‘fricatives’
gutturales ‘gutturals’
labiales ‘labials’
laryngales ‘laryngeals’
latérales ‘laterals’
French English gloss
linguales ‘linguals’
mi-fermées ‘mid-close’
mi-ouvertes ‘mid-open’
moyennes ‘mid’
nasales ‘nasals’
ouvertes ‘open’
palatales ‘palatals’
French English gloss
plosives ‘plosives’
roulées ‘rolled’
uvulaires ‘uvulars’
vélaires ‘velars’
voyelles ‘vowels’
Chart revisions:
Symbol Added Category
‘guttural’ trill
uvular trill
ʍ velar fricative
‘lingual’ fricatives
between half-close and mid
ə mid
ɔ̈ mid-open
ɐ mid-open
Symbol Removed Category
‘rolled’ consonant
   
Symbol Revised Category
g > velar fricative
Format revisions:
  • vowels organized top to bottom from close to open: 7 rows of symbols with 5 labelled rows
  • columns for place of articulation added
  • top to bottom organized from consonants to vowels
 
◄◄

1903 Chart

►►
Source: Maître Phonétique, vol.18, May 1903
Images: chart only | page scan
Translation:
French English gloss
consonnes ‘consonants’
fermées ‘close’
fricatives ‘fricatives’
gutturales ‘gutturals’
labiales ‘labials’
laryngales ‘laryngeals’
latérales ‘laterals’
French English gloss
linguales ‘linguals’
mi-fermées ‘mid-close’
mi-ouvertes ‘mid-open’
moyennes ‘mid’
nasales ‘nasals’
ouvertes ‘open’
palatales ‘palatals’
French English gloss
plosives ‘plosives’
roulées ‘rolled’
uvulaires ‘uvulars’
vélaires ‘velars’
voyelles ‘vowels’
Chart revisions:
Symbol Revised Category
ɦ ‘guttural’ fricative > laryngeal fricative
 
◄◄

1904 Chart

►►
Note: all columns revised with English labelling
Source: Maître Phonétique, vol.19, 1904, “Aims and principles of the International Phonetic Association”
Images: chart only | page scan
Chart revisions:
Symbol Removed Category
‘lingual’ fricatives
Symbol Revised Category
> ˀ laryngeal plosive > ‘throat’ stop
‘guttural’ trill > ‘bronchs’ fricative
Format revisions:
  • secondary articulation vowels changed
  • ‘laryngales’ > ‘throat’
  • ‘gutturales’ > ‘bronchs’
 
◄◄

1905 Chart

►►
Source: Maître Phonétique, vol.20, Dec. 1905
Images: chart only | page scan
Translation:
French English gloss
bronchiales ‘bronchials’
consonnes ‘consonants’
fermées ‘close’
fricatives ‘fricatives’
labiales ‘labials’
laryngales ‘laryngeals’
French English gloss
latérales ‘laterals’
linguales ‘linguals’
mi-fermées ‘mid-close’
mi-ouvertes ‘mid-open’
nasales ‘nasals’
ouvertes ‘open’
French English gloss
palatales ‘palatals’
plosives ‘plosives’
roulées ‘rolled’
uvulaires ‘uvulars’
vélaires ‘velars’
voyelles ‘vowels’
Chart revisions:
Symbol Added Category
ù ì close
ò ø̀ è mid
Format revisions:
  • secondary articulation vowels changed
  • ‘mid’ vowel row omitted
 
◄◄

1907 Chart

►►
Note: only chart where the vowels are organized above the consonants
Source: Maître Phonétique, vol.22, May-June 1907
Images: chart only | page scan
Translation:
French English gloss
bronchiales ‘bronchials’
consonnes ‘consonants’
étroites ‘narrow’
fermées ‘close’
fricatives ‘fricatives’
gencivales ‘gingival’
gutturales ‘gutturals’
French English gloss
labiales ‘labials’
larges ‘wide’
latérales ‘laterals’
moins étroites ‘less narrow’
moins larges ‘less wide’
nasales ‘nasals’
palatales ‘palatals’
French English gloss
plus étroites ‘more narrow’
plus larges ‘more wide’
roulées ‘rolled’
uvulaires ‘uvulars’
vélaires ‘velars’
voyelles ‘vowels’
Chart revisions:
Symbol Added Category
palatal fricative
‘wide’
ʚ ɜ ‘less wide’
ã œ̃ ɔ̃ ɛ̃ ĩ nasals
Symbol Removed Category
ù ì close lax vowels
ò ø̀ è mid lax vowels
Format revisions:
  • secondary articulation vowels changed
  • ‘very-open’ and ‘very-close’ vowel categories added: now, 8 rows of symbols with 6 labelled rows
  • ‘linguales’ replaced by ‘gencivales’
  • ‘laryngales’ replaced by ‘gutturales’
  • consonant and vowel rows reordered
  • top to bottom organized from vowels to consonants
 
◄◄

1912 Chart

►►
Note: vowels first formatted with 3 distinct columns
Source: Maître Phonétique, vol.27, 1912, “The Principles of the International Phonetic Association”
Images: chart only | page scan
Chart revisions:
Symbol Added Category
ɴ uvular nasal
σ ƍ ‘lips’ & ‘point and blade’ fricatives
ɛ̈ ‘half-open mixed’
ř ‘point and blade’ ‘rolled’ consonant
Symbol Removed Category
ʜ ‘bronchial’ fricatives
uvular ‘rolled’ consonant
palatal fricative
ɜ ʚ ‘less wide’ vowels
ã œ̃ ɔ̃ ɛ̃ ĩ nasal vowels
Format revisions:
  • secondary articulation vowels changed
  • ‘lip-teeth’ column added
  • ‘bronchiales’ column removed
  • vowel section reformatted to have 7 rows of symbols with 4 labelled rows
  • vowels added column categories
  • consonant and vowel rows reordered
  • linear ordering of columns reversed
  • vertical ordering of vowels and consonants reversed
 
◄◄

1921 Chart

►►
Source: L’Écriture Phonétique Internationale, 2nd ed., p. 6 
Images: chart only | page scan
Translation:
French English gloss
consonnes ‘consonants’
fermées ‘close’
fricatives ‘fricatives’
labiales ‘labials’
laryngales ‘laryngeals’
latérales ‘laterals’
French English gloss
linguales ‘linguals’
mi-fermées ‘mid-close’
mi-ouvertes ‘mid-open’
nasales ‘nasals’
ouvertes ‘open’
palatales ‘palatals’
French English gloss
plosives ‘plosives’
roulées ‘rolled’
uvulaires ‘uvulars’
vélaires ‘velars’
voyelles ‘vowels’
Chart revisions:
Symbol Added Category
ƕ labial fricatives
χ uvular fricative
uvular ‘rolled’ consonant
   
Symbol Removed Category
ř ‘point and blade’ ‘rolled’ consonant
ɪ ʏ æ front vowels
ʊ back vowel
σ ƍ ‘lips’ & ‘point and blade’ fricatives
Symbol Revised Category
> χ uvular fricative
ï > ɨ close central vowel
ü > ʉ close central vowel
ë ö > ɘ ɵ half-close central vowels
ɛ̈ ɔ̈ > ɜ ʚ half-open central vowels
  • ◌̈ revised to indicate a vowel that “belongs to the family of a vowel-type and does not form a separate phoneme”
Format revisions:
  • secondary articulation vowels changed
  • ordering of vowel place of articulation reversed
  • ‘semi-vowels’ row added
  • ‘lip-teeth’ column removed
 
◄◄

1926 Chart

►►
Note: first chart formatted for printing on booklet covers and first time tone marks were provided on chart
Source: Maître Phonétique, vol.41, July-Sept. 1926
Images: chart only | page scan
Chart revisions:
Symbol Added Category
ʈ ɖ retroflex plosives
ɳ retroflex nasal
ɭ retroflex lateral
ɽ retroflex ‘rolled’ consonant
ʂ ʐ retroflex fricatives
ɬ dental and alveolar lateral
ɾ dental and alveolar flap
ɱ labiodental nasal
ɕ ʑ alveolo-palatal fricatives
ħ ʕ pharyngeal fricatives
ř dental and alveolar ‘rolled’ consonant
ɘ ɵ ‘half-close’ central vowels
ɜ ʚ ‘half-open’ central vowels
ɒ open back vowel
ɪ ʏ æ front vowels
ʊ back vowel
Symbol Removed Category
ř ‘point and blade’ ‘rolled’ consonant
uvular ‘rolled’ consonant
labial fricative
   
Symbol Revised Category
> ‘half-close’ back vowel
Other sounds:
Symbol Description
ƫ palatalized consonants
velarized or pharyngealized consonants
ejective consonants
ɮ fricative l
Symbol Description
σ ƍ labialized θ ð or s z
ƪ ƺ labialized ʃ ʒ
ʇ ʗ ʖ clicks, Zulu c q x
ɺ sound between r and l
Digraphs:
Symbol Description
ʦ ʧ ʤ ligatures for affricates
◌͡◌ or ◌͜◌ marker for affricates
Length, stress, pitch:
Symbol Description
◌ː full length
◌ˑ half length
ʹ◌ stress
ˉ◌ high level pitch
ˍ◌ low level pitch
ˊ◌ high rising
Symbol Description
ˏ◌ low rising
ˋ◌ high falling
ˎ◌ low falling
ˆ rise-fall
ˇ fall-rise
Modifiers:
Symbol Description
◌̃ nasality
◌̥ breath
◌̬ voice
◌ʻ slight aspiration
◌̣ retroflexion
◌̇ palatalization
Symbol Description
◌˔ tongue slightly raised
◌˕ tongue slightly lowered
˒ lips more rounded
˓ lips more spread
◌̩ syllabic consonant
◌̆ consonantal vowel
Format revisions:
  • secondary articulation vowels changed
  • ‘semi-vowels’ row added
  • vowel diagram right-aligned
  • ‘retroflex’, ‘palato-alveolar’ and ‘alveolo-palatal’ columns added
  • place of articulation columns renamed
  • descriptive sections added below chart
 
◄◄

1928 Chart

►►
Notes: published in an article written by Daniel Jones, it includes revisions of the chart and the alphabet, some of which are retained in later charts
  other sounds, suprasegmentals, and diacritics are included in a separate section of the article
Source: Maître Phonétique, vol.43, 1928, “Lautzeichen und ihre Anwendung in verschiedenen Fachgebieten”
Images: chart only | page scan
Translation:
German English gloss
Alveolopalatale ‘alveolopalatal’
Bilabiale ‘bilabial’
Dentale und alveolare ‘dental and alveolar’
einmal angeschlagene ‘once struck’
explosive ‘explosive’
frikative ‘fricative’
gerollte ‘rolled’
geschlossene ‘close’
halbgeschlossene ‘semi-close’
halboffene ‘semi-open’
Halbvokale u. reibungslose Dauerlaute ‘semi-vowels & smooth cont. sound’
Konsonanten ‘consonants’
German English gloss
Labiodentale ‘labiodental’
laterale ‘lateral’
nasale ‘nasal’
nichtfrikative ‘non-fricative’
offene ‘open’
Palatale ‘palatal’
Palatoalveolare ‘palatoalveolar’
Pharyngale ‘pharyngeal’
Uvulare ‘uvular’
Velare ‘velar’
Vokale ‘vowels’
Zerebrale ‘cerebral’
Chart revisions:
Symbol Added Category
ɸ β bilabial fricatives
ɮ lateral fricative
Symbol Removed Category
ʋ ƕ bilabial fricatives
ř dental and alveolar ‘rolled’ consonant
ɬ dental and alveolar lateral
ˀ h ɦ glottals
ɘ ɵ ‘half-close’ central vowels
ɜ ʚ ‘half-open’ central vowels
ɪ ʏ front vowels
ʊ back vowel
Other sounds:
Symbol Description
ƫ palatalized consonants
fronted velars
ɬ velarized l
velarized consonants
pʼ tʼ kʼ tsʼ ejective consonants
ʇ ʗ ʖ ʞ clicks, Zulu c q x, velar k
Symbol Description
ɓ ɗ implosive consonants
σ ƍ labialized θ ð or s z
ƪ ƺ labialized ʃ ʒ
ɺ sound between r and l
ʍ voiceless w
  • fricative l (ɮ) is moved to the main chart
  • ɺ is redefined as a “sound between d and l
  • implosive consonants were introduced
  • alveolar l (ɫ) was omitted from the main chart and redefined as velarized l in the other sounds section
Digraphs:
Symbol Description
ʦ ʧ ʤ ligatures for affricates
ph th kh and tlh tʃh aspirated stops and consonants
sh aspirated s in Burmese, Shan, and Korean
tl dl lateral stops (as in Bantu)
hm hn voiceless m n ɲ ŋ
əɹ “vowels spoken with tongue bent backwards”
  • symbols combined with h l ɹ added
Diacritics:
Symbol Description
◌̃ nasal
◌̥ voicelessness (breath)
◌̬ voiced
◌̣ close vowel
◌̜ open vowel
◌̪ dental articulation
Symbol Description
◌̫ labialization
◌̇ palatalization
◌̈ central vowel
◌ʻ slight aspiration
◌ʼ laryngeal occlusion
  • palatalization ◌̇, tongue slightly raised ˔, tongue slightly lowered ˕, and lips more rounded ˒ omitted
  • stress marks changed
  • retroflection ◌̣ redefined as “close vowel”
  • labialization ◌̫, dental articulation ◌̪, laryngeal occlusion ◌ʼ added
“Phonetic attributes”:
Symbol Description
◌ː full length
◌ˑ half length
◌̆ less prominent part of a diphthong
◌̩ syllabic consonant
ˈ◌ primary stress
ˌ◌ secondary stress
ˉ◌ high tone
Symbol Description
ˍ◌ low tone
ˊ◌ high rising
ˏ◌ low rising
ˋ◌ high falling
ˎ◌ low falling
ˆ rise fall
ˇ fall rise
Format revisions:
  • secondary articulation vowels changed
  • ‘glottal’ column removed
 
◄◄

1930 Chart

►►
Note: some revisions already introduced in Jones (1928)
Source: Maître Phonétique, vol.45, July-Sept. 1930
Images: chart only | page scan
Chart revisions:
Symbol Added Category
ɸ β bilabial fricatives
ɮ lateral fricative
Symbol Removed Category
ʚ ‘half-open’ central vowel
ɘ ɵ ‘half-close’ central vowels
Other sounds revisions:
Symbol Added Description
ɫ velarized or pharyngealized consonant
ɓ ɗ implosive voiced consonants
ř fricative trill
ʍ voiceless w
ɵ a vowel between ø and o
  • revisions with ɫ ɓ ɗ ʍ appear in Jones (1928)
Digraphs revisions:
Symbol Added Description
c ɟ alternative to
ph th aspirated plosives
Length, stress, pitch revisions:
Symbol Added Description
ˌ◌ secondary stress
Modifiers revisions:
Symbol Added Description
ʃˢ variety of ʃ resembling s
◌̫ labialization
◌̪ dental articulation
Symbol Revised Description
◌̣ retroflection > specially close vowel
ʹ◌ > ˈ◌ primary stress
Format revisions:
  • secondary articulation vowels changed
 
◄◄

1932 Chart

►►
Notes: printed on booklet covers from 1933-1937
  published and re-formatted in “Fondamenti di Grafia Fonetica” 1933
Source: Maître Phonétique, vol.48, April-June 1933
Images: chart only | page scan
Chart revisions:
Symbol Removed Category
ɪ ʏ front vowels
ɜ ‘half-open’ central vowel
ʊ back vowel
Symbol Revised Category
> ɣ velar fricative
Modifiers revisions:
Symbol Added Category
ɪ ʏ ʊ lowered i y u
ɜ lowered ə
ï ü ë ö ɛ̈ ɔ̈ central vowels ɨ ʉ ə˔ ɵ
Format revisions:
  • secondary articulation vowels changed
 
◄◄

1938 Chart

►►
Note: printed on booklet covers from 1939-1943
Source: Maître Phonétique, vol.54, July-Sept. 1939
Images: chart only | page scan
Chart revisions:
Symbol Revised Category
ɮ > dental and alveolar lateral fricative
Digraphs revisions:
Symbol Revised Category
◌͡◌ also denotes synchronic articulation
 
◄◄

1947 Chart

►►
Source: Maître Phonétique, vol.59, July-Dec. 1947
Images: chart only | page scan
Chart revisions:
Symbol Revised Category
ˀ > ʔ glottal stop
Other sounds revisions:
Symbol Added Description
ʆ ʓ palatal ʃ ʒ
ƞ Japanese syllabic nasal
ɧ combination of x and ʃ
ɪ > ɩ lowered i
ʊ > ɷ lowered u
Digraphs revisions:
Symbol Added Description
ƾ ƻ alternative for ts dz
ɔɹ etc. or eʴ aʴ ɔʴ etc. or etc. r-coloured vowels
əɹ əʴ ɹ or r-coloured schwa
Modifiers revisions:
Symbol Added Description
◌̟ ◌˖ tongue advanced
◌̠ ◌˗ tongue retracted
  • the existing tongue position diacritics ◌˔ ◌˕ can now also appear below the symbol: ◌̝ ◌̞
Format revisions:
  • ɐ appears on the same row as æ
 
◄◄

1949 Chart

►►
Note: other sounds, suprasegmentals, and diacritics are included in a separate section of the article
Source: Principles of the International Phonetic Association, 1949
Images: chart only | page scan
Other sounds:
Symbol Description
ƫ , etc. palatalized consonants
ʆ ʓ special forms for palatalized ʃ ʒ
advanced velar consonants
ɫ velarized (“dark”) l
other velarized consonants
pʼ tʼ kʼ tsʼ ejective consonants
ɓ ɗ implosive consonants
σ ƍ labialized θ ð or s z
Symbol Description
ƪ ƺ labialized ʃ ʒ
ɺ sound between d and l
ʇ ʖ ʗ ʞ clicks, Zulu c q x, velar ʞ
, etc. r-coloured vowels
ƞ Japanese syllabic nasal
ɧ combination of x and ʃ
ʍ or hw voiceless w
  • distinction between ordinary g and advanced ɡ for Russian added
Digraphs:
Symbol Description
◌͡◌ or ◌͜◌ marker for affricates
ʦ ʧ ʤ ligatures for affricates
c ɟ alternative to
ƾ ƻ alternative for ts dz
ttʃ tts, etc. doubled affricates
ph th kh; tlh tʃh aspirated consonants
sh aspirated s in Burmese, Shan, and Korean
tl dl lateral stops (as in Bantu)
hm hn voiceless nasal consonants that occur as separate phonemes
Symbol Description
ɔɹ r-coloured vowels
əɹ or ɹ r-coloured ə
kp gb ŋm double articulated consonants
kw tw ŋw simultaneous w articulation
tj sj, etc. palatalised consonants
, etc. “front labialisation” palatalisation with lip-rounding
ɛŋ ɛƞ alternative to ã ɛ̃, etc.
eh ah, etc. breathy vowels
  • more descriptions on double articulated vowels added
  • doubled affricates added
Diacritics:
Symbol Description
◌̃ nasal
◌̥ voicelessness (breath)
◌̬ voiced
◌̈ central vowel
◌̣ or ◌̞ specially close vowel
◌̜ or ◌̝ specially open vowel
◌̟ ◌˖ advanced variety
◌̠ ◌˗ retracted variety
Symbol Description
◌̪ dental articulation
◌̫ labialization
◌̇ palatalization
◌˒ lips more rounded
◌˓ lips more spread
◌ʻ weak aspiration
◌ʼ simultaneous glottal stop
◌͡◌ or ◌͜◌ synchronic articulation
Length, stress, tones:
Symbol Description
◌ː full length
◌ˑ half length
◌̆ less prominent part of a diphthong
◌̩ syllabic consonant
ˈ◌ primary stress
ˌ◌ secondary stress
ˉ◌ high tone
Symbol Description
ˍ◌ low tone
ˊ◌ high rising
ˏ◌ low rising
ˋ◌ high falling
ˎ◌ low falling
ˆ rise fall
ˇ fall rise
Format revisions:
  • ɐ appears on a separate row from æ
 
◄◄

1951 Chart

►►
Note: printed on booklet covers from 1952-1970
Source: Maître Phonétique, vol.67, Jan.-July 1952
Images: chart only | page scan
Digraphs revisions:
Symbol Added Description
ɚ r-coloured schwa alternative
 
 
 
Comment: journal name changed from Maître Phonétique to Journal of the International Phonetic Association in 1971
 
 
◄◄

1894 French phonemes

►►
Notes: first revision of 1888 alphabet for French phonemes
  mainly, the vowels were replaced with new symbols that appear in later IPA charts
Source: Maître Phonétique, vol.9, Feb. 1894
Images: chart only
 
◄◄

1894 German phonemes

►►
Notes: first usage of chart format in the Maître Phonétique
  this preceded the first IPA chart
Source: Maître Phonétique, vol.9, June 1894
Images: chart only
 
◄◄

1908 Chinese tones

►►
Note: an earlier proposed system to represent tones
Source: Maître Phonétique, vol.23, Jan.-Feb. 1908
Images: chart only
 
◄◄

1938 Sandawe phonemes

►►
Note: example of the earlier representation for click sounds
Source: Maître Phonétique, vol.54, Oct.-Dec. 1938
Images: chart only
 
 
◄◄

About

   
Researcher: Natalie Udomkesmalee
Web design: Małgorzata Deroń, mderon[at]heljargrind.com
Typefaces: system default serif and sans serif, unitipa (a Unicode-compliant version of tipa8, currently being developed by the IPA)