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A with breve.svg

Ă (upper case) or ă (lower case), usually referred to in English as A-breve, is a letter used in standard Romanian language and Vietnamese language orthographies. In Romanian, it is used to represent the mid-central unrounded vowel, while in Vietnamese it represents the short a sound. It is the second letter of both the Romanian and the Vietnamese alphabets.

Ă/ă is also used in the transliteration of Bulgarian letter Ъ/ъ in Slovak, Czech, Romanian and Swedish.



The sound represented in Romanian by ă, although called a schwa (misleadingly suggesting an unstressed lax sound), is a vowel in its own right. Unlike English, Catalan or French, but similar to Bulgarian and Afrikaans, it can be stressed. There are words in which it is the only vowel, such as "măr" /mər/ (apple) or "văd" /vəd/ (I see). Additionally, some words which also contain other vowels can have the stress on ă, like in the examples "cărțile" /ˈkər.t​͡si.le/ (the books) and "odăi" /oˈdəj/ (rooms).


Ă is the 2nd letter of the Vietnamese alphabet and represent /a/. Because Vietnamese is a tonal language this letter may optionally have any one of the 5 tonal symbols above or below it. See Vietnamese phonology.

  • Ằ ằ
  • Ắ ắ
  • Ẳ ẳ
  • Ẵ ẵ
  • Ặ ặ

Pronunciation respelling for English

In some systems for Pronunciation respelling for English including American Heritage Dictionary notation, this represents a so-called "short A" sound, denoted as /æ/ in IPA.

See also

The Basic modern Latin alphabet
Aa Bb Cc Dd Ee Ff Gg Hh Ii Jj Kk Ll Mm Nn Oo Pp Qq Rr Ss Tt Uu Vv Ww Xx Yy Zz
Letter A with diacritics
Letters using breve sign

history palaeography derivations diacritics punctuation numerals Unicode list of letters ISO/IEC 646


Up to date as of January 15, 2010

Definition from Wiktionary, a free dictionary



The Latin script
Aa Bb Cc Dd Ee Ff Gg Hh Ii Jj Kk Ll Mm Nn Oo Pp Qq Rr Ss Tt Uu Vv Ww Xx Yy Zz
Variations of letter A
Letters using breve sign or inverted breve sign


Ă upper case (lower case ă)

  1. The letter A with a breve.




Ă (capital, lowercase ă)

  1. The second letter of the Romanian alphabet representing the phoneme /ə/. Preceded by A and followed by Â.

Simple English

This page is about the first letter in the alphabet.
For the indefinite article, see Article (grammar).
For other uses of A, see A (disambiguation)
The Latin alphabet
Aa Bb Cc Dd
Ee Ff Gg Hh Ii Jj
Kk Ll Mm Nn Oo Pp
Qq Rr Ss Tt Uu Vv
Ww Xx Yy Zz

A is the first letter of the English alphabet. a is a usual symbol for a low central vowel, as in "father"; the English long a (ā) is pronounced as a diphthong of ĕ and y. The corresponding letter of the Greek alphabet is named alpha. Alpha and omega, the last letter of the Greek alphabet, symbolize the beginning and the end. In musical notation the letter A is the symbol of a note in the scale, below B and above G.

  • A is the letter that was formerly used to represent a team in an old TV show, The A Team.
Simple English Wiktionary has the word meaning for:

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