[ fuh-net-ik-lee ]


  1. involving the sounds, production, or transcription of speech:

    Many children learn to read phonetically, by sounding out the letters of each word.

    Peas and beans are linked phonetically not only by the repeated vowel sound, but also by the initial consonants—the sounds p and b are both produced in the same way.

  2. according to the way something is pronounced:

    When he has to write words he doesn’t know, Jabez gets his point across by spelling phonetically.

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Other Words From

  • non·pho·net·i·cal·ly adverb
  • un·pho·net·i·cal·ly adverb

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Word History and Origins

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Example Sentences

Abraham shrewdly decided Selena y Los Dinos should sing exclusively in Spanish, a move that necessitated that Selena learn Spanish phonetically.

Because the Junzi sauce resembles the classic zha jiang sauce in flavor, but doesn’t have the ground pork component, he opted to create a phonetically similar word for it.

From Eater

Kanji are a system of Japanese writing using Chinese characters to phonetically represent names.

The name, he says, is something he created phonetically and proceeded to use as his email handle.

Phonetically, the dialect offers certain markedPg 46 differences when contrasted with French.

And he jotted down the name, I presume phonetically, in his note-book.

I seized pencil and paper, and noted down phonetically the different notes as they were uttered.

Frontenac's secretary spelled phonetically like so many of his contemporaries—a source of embarrassment to historians.

In many cases the phonetically trained student becomes the better speller.





phoneticphonetic alphabet