Eezee for English speakers
If you know English, then learning Eezee will be quick and painless. You could figure most of it out on your own, but spending 20 minutes on this page will get you up and running more quickly. The changes are focused on the mapping of letters to sounds (orthography) to achieve consistency or "regularity". Once you learn the few rules, you'll simply need to read a little Eezee to gain familiarity with the appearence of words.
Eezee uses the same 26-letter Latin alphabet as English, and the same punctuation. The only difference is that some letter names are changed to support two rules:
- All consonant names include the sound they represent.
- All vowel names are identical to their long sound.
The Eezee Alphabet Table shows the names of each letter and the minor and major changes from English. That's it as far as changes to the spoken language. The rest is identical to spoken English.
|Letter||English word with Sound||Eezee Spelling of Letter Name||Reason for Name Change||Change based on|
|C||cheetah||cee||K and S sounds have letters, CH does not||CH sound as in Italian words like Cello|
|G||goat||gee||include sound in name|
|H||horse||huh||include sound in name|
|N||newt||nuh||distinguish from M|
|Q||sting ray||iq||KW sound covered, NG not covered||lower case "q" resembles "g"|
|U||toucan||uu||change to unique sound, can add Y if needed|
|W||wombat||wuh||include sound in name|
|X||shark||ix||KS sound covered, SH not covered||similar to Mardarin Chinese and Basque X sound|
|Y||yak||yuh||include sound in name|
|Z||zebra||zee or zed||no change|
<P>Let's move now to the consonant sounds. The Consonant Table shows how those sound are mapped to letters. With the exception of the three two-letter sounds, all consonants represent exactly one sound consistenly.
<P> As shown, the most obvious differences to English are C, X and Q representing the CH, SH and NG sounds respectively. Also, G always represents a hard G sound (as in "go"), with words like "giraffe" translated to J ("jaraf"). This only leaves three two-letter sounds: two distinct TH sounds and ZJ, as in treasure and beige. In all other consonant or vowel-consonant blends, the consonant sounds are just as when used alone. For example, the S, T and R in "street" make the same sounds as in "see", "top" and "run".
<P> A word on the two TH sounds: Most English speakers are not even aware that they are two distinct sounds because they're spelled the same and sound similar. The technical names for them are the "voiced interdental fricative" and "voiceless interdental fricative", however, we'll use the more discriptive "buzzing TH" and "hissing TH" here. If you drag the TH sound out in "the", you'll here a buzzing sound like a kazoo makes. Notice that you need your voicebox to make this sound. Holding the TH in "math" sounds like air being let out of a tire, and does not require the voicebox.
Another way to understand the distinction is to say words like the two pairs of examples shown in the table, which are identical except for the TH sounds. The buzzing TH, as in "either", is written as plain TH in Eezee. The hissing TH, as in "ether" or "math", is spelled FH in Eezee since the F makes a similar hissing sound and also does not involve the vocal chords.
|Eezee Letter(s)||English Sound||English Example||Eezee Example|
Vowels are also more regular than English. However, they are still a little confusing because there are a lot of vowels sounds and several are similar. The main rules of Eezee vowels are that short vowel sounds use the single vowel letter, and long vowels use a double letter. Each short vowel is as in English, and the long vowels are the same except for U. The long U is as in "new" ("nuu" in Eezee), because the Y-sound can be added if needed, as in "you" ("yuu").
The next two sounds in the table, AH and UH, show the other two vowel sounds without consonant blends. AH is similar to a short O, but is useful for some words. UH is distinct from other vowel sounds. For example, contrast the English words "cut", "putt" and "put". Also, consider "luck" and "look".
The next three sounds in the table are vowel-consonant blends. They should be self-explanitory given the examples. Try to keep the example words "saw", "cow" and "boy" in mind to help you visualize the Eezee spelling of these sounds.
The next group of sounds show R-coloring. R-coloring is based on the idea that the sound that follows a vowel can influence the vowel sound. This effect is strongest with vowels before Rs. Again, the examples illustrate how this works. Keep in mind the following translations (English/Eezee) to help you visualize R-coloring: "car/"kahr", "air"/"air", "ear"/"eer", "or"/"or". The final group indicates unstressed vowel sounds known as schwas. Many pronunciation guides list it as a single, generic sound, but Eezee recognizes differences similar to the short vowel sounds, but with less emphasis. The letter to represent the schwa depends on if it ends a sylable, or it's immediately followed by a consonant sound. The table gives a guide for choosing the letter to represent an unemphasized vowel sound.
|Sound||Eezee Letter(s)||English Example||Eezee Example|
You're now fluent in Eezee. Take a look at the following translation of the Lord's Prayer for practice.
|Eezee Lord'z Prair||English Lord's Prayer|
|Ahr Fahther, huu ahrt in Heven,||Our Father, who art in Heaven,|
|halooed bee Thii Naam.||hallowed be Thy Name.|
|Thii Kiqdum kum, Thii Wil bee dun,||Thy Kingdom come, Thy Will be done,|
|on Urfh, az it iz in Heven.||on Earth, as it is in Heaven.|
|Giv us this daa ahr daalee bred,||Give us this day our daily bread,|
|and fergiv us ahr trespasez,||and forgive us our trespasses,|
|az wee fergiv thooz huu trespas agenst us.||as we forgive those who trespass against us.|
|And leed us not intuu temptaaxen,||And lead us not into temptation,|
|but diliver us frum eevul.||but deliver us from evil.|
|For thiin iz tha kiqdum, and tha power, and tha gloree,||For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory,|
|for ever and ever.||for ever and ever.|