Finnish vowels

Finnish has eight vowels that make up 8 monophthongs, and 16 common diphthongs and two uncommon diphthongs. A monophthong is a single vowel sound and a diphthong is a blend of two different vowel sounds within a single syllable.

Table 1. Finnish monophthongs
Vowels Example in Finnish English translation of example
a appelsiini orange1
e elokuu August
i iso big
o omena apple2
u ulos out
y yksi one
ä älä do not
ö öljy oil
Note: If two vowels are next to each other, they might or might not create a diphthong. If one vowel belongs to one syllable and the other vowel belongs to a different syllable, they are monophthongs and should be pronounced individually.

Finnish vowels y and ö

Finnish vowels ä and ö

Table 2. Finnish diphthongs
Vowels Example in Finnish English translation of example
ai aina always
ei ei no
ie kieli language
oi soittaa to phone, call
ui uida to swim
yi hyi yuck
äi äiti mother
öi öisin at night(s)
au Australia Australia
eu Eurooppa Europe
iu liukas slippery
ou outo strange, odd, peculiar
uo Suomi Finland
äy täysin fully, completely, entirely, totally, utterly, perfectly
night
öy pöytä table
ey leyhyä to waft (this diphthong is uncommon)
iy siistiytyä to tidy up, to clean oneself up (this diphthong is uncommon)

Finnish vowels with words

Finnish diphthongs

Finnish diphthongs with words

1 This is not a mistake.
2 This is also not a mistake.