The German Consonant: P

The German consonant 'p' is pronounced in a similar manner to its English equivalent, regardless of its position within a word. However, the 'p' letter rarely occurs at the end of German words.

Click on the examples in the table below to hear how words containing the letter ' p ' are pronounced in the German language.

Examples with Pronunciation
Letter 'p' in initial position
Polizei - police Prüfung - exam Pilot - pilot
Problem - problem Passage - passage Puder - powder
Letter 'p' in medial position
adaptieren - to adapt Papier - paper Coupon - coupon
Kneipe - pub/bar hopsen - to hop Kapital - capital
Letter 'p' in final position
Mikroskop - microscope Sirup - syrup Trupp - troop

'Ph' Combination

The 'ph' combination was discussed earlier, but is repeated here for the sake of completeness. All German words containing a 'ph' combination are taken from English; and thus are pronounced as a 'f' as well. Although most of these words have already been Germanified such that they are now spelled with a 'f' letter.

Examples with Pronunciation
Words containing 'ph' combination
Alphabet - alphabet Phantasie - fantasy Biographie - biography
Phrase - phrase Delphin - dolphin Mikrophon - microphone

'Pf' Combination

The letter combination 'pf' might sound a bit strange to English speakers, but in German, both the 'p' and 'f' are pronounced, but articulated as one single sound.

Examples with Pronunciation
Words containing 'pf' combination
Apfel - apple Knopf - button Pfeffer - pepper

To summarize, the letter 'p' is pronounced exactly as in English, even when if forms a 'ph' combination, it's prounced as an 'f'. The only difference is the German 'pf' combination, in which both letters are pronounced.