Hello! I’m Clar, and you might be wondering how my name is pronounced. If you’re looking for the short answer, in both English and French, it rhymes with the word “car.” If you’re looking for the long answer, it’s pronounced /klɑːɹ/, or /klaʁ/ if you’re feeling particularly French.
This is how you’d spell the pronunciation of my name in the International Phonetic Alphabet, which is used to exactly describe the position of your tongue, teeth, and other flappy bits when making sounds, which is a whole lot more objective than “it sort of sounds like this.” If you’re not familiar with IPA, here’s what the spellings mean:
- k is the sound you make for the C in “cool,” which is also exactly the word I’d use to describe myself. It’s a velar plosive, pronounced by holding your tongue on the top of your mouth about halfway to the back and creating a small explosion.
- l is the sound you make for the L in “lizard person,” which I am not. It’s an alveolar lateral approximant, pronounced with your tongue at the top of your mouth right behind your teeth, but sort of letting a bit of air pass by.
- ɑː and a are the sounds you make for the A in “are you joking?” and “absolument pas” respectively, which is what I’d respond to the question “are you a lizard person?” in English and French, respectively. These are open, unrounded, front and back vowels, respectively, pronounced with your tongue at the bottom of your mouth, in the front or back depending on how French you are.
- ɹ and ʁ are the sounds you make for the R in “really” and “réellement,” which is what I’d say when you asked for clarification from the previous question. The former is an alveolar approximant, which is like l if you scrunch your mouth up a bunch. The latter is a voiced uvular fricative, where you have your tongue even further back than the k and let your vocal cords create a gargling, but French sound.
Hopefully, this was informative. If not, at least you just made a bunch of really weird sounds with your mouth, and hopefully that was fun.