Decimal Addresses for Phonetic Symbols in Unicode

To use Unicode on the Net, you need three things:

  1. a font that supports Unicode (i.e. has sixteen bit addresses with the correct glyphs at those addresses) installed on the user's machine. A non-free, relatively small and widely installed TrueType font that supports the IPA extensions (decimal #s 592-680)is lucida sans unicode (aka lsansuni.ttf); Arial Unicode MS is a very large (22 Mb) font usually shipped with MS Office and iMac OS X v10.5 or later;if you prefer a serif font, try George Williams' Caslon. For much more information, see Alan Woods' Unicode Resources
  2. .
  3. The browser needs to be set to assign a supporting font (like lsansuni) to the Unicode UTF-8 encoding (Firefox: Preferences>Content >Fonts &Colors>Advanced>Default Character Encoding; MSIE you may have to tweak a little.)
  4. To write Unicode, you need an editor that can display character maps beyond decimal #255. MSWord 97 and above can do this with Insert-->Symbol but is otherwise fairly wayward in inserting the META tag. The best (and free) editor for this on the Windows platform is the new Unipad from Sharmahd Computing in Hannover. Unipad has its own font(s)and can do conversions among several encodings. Highly recommended for Windows. For Linux, the choice is Yudit. TrueType fonts can now be used in X Window, so lucida sans unicode can be used in Linux as well.

The symbols below, which are most of the non-ascii symbols useful for standard phonetic transcription of English, are drawn from several regions of the Unicode chart: from Latin-1 Supplement, Latin Extended-A and B, IPA Extensions, Combining Diacritical Mark, and Greek (for the theta).

If you want the file to trigger Unicode UTF-8 decoding in the browser, you must preface this META tag: <meta http-equiv="Content-Type" content="text/html;charset=UTF-8"> as used at the top of this page. Otherwise the browser may not recognise that you intend the UTF-8 decoding to be used, not Western (or whatever).

If your machine has lucida sans unicode ior another supporting font on it, and you have chosen it for the Unicode encoding, the cells in the table should all be full with the correct glyphs.

For further discussion, reaching far beyond English, see John Wells' IPA-Unicode page.

Consonant symbols
ð #240 voiced interdental fricative
ɾ #638 alveolar flap
ɫ #619 velarized l
ŋ #331 velar nasal
θ #952 voiceless interdental fricative
ʍ #653 voiceless w
ʔ #660 glottal stop
Diacritics
 ̩ #809 syllabic stroke
 ̃ #771 nasalized
 ̪ #810 dentalized
 ̥ #805 devoiced (broken in font)
 ʰ #688 aspirated
 ʷ #695 labialized
 ̚ #771 checked release
 ː #720 lengthened
Palatal Fricatives
ʃ #643 voiceless palatal fricative š #353
ʧ #679 voiceless palatal affricate č #269
ʒ #658 voiced palatal fricative ž #382
ʤ #676 voiced palatal affricate ǰ #496
Vowels
ɑ #593 low back
æ #230 low front
ə #601 schwa
з: #1079 "stressed schwa" (RP:HEARD)
ɛ #603 mid front lax
ɪ #618 high front lax
ɔ #596 mid back lax
ʊ #650 high back lax
ʌ #652 central low

You may find it handy to use Martin Weisser's Transcription Tool, which gives you the code to copy and paste into a web page or word processor. Or perhaps you are ready to move up to Richard Ishida's suite of tools for the entire IPA, starting with ipa character picker