Ukrainian Studies

Transliterating Ukrainian

in Slavic Department Courses at the University of Toronto

Only two standard transliteration systems from Ukrainian to English are acceptable in scholarly discourse. They are the system developed by the US Library of Congress and the International system (also called the scientific or the European system) which is loosely based on the International Phonetic Alphabet. The Library of Congress system requires ligatures (superscript arcs above the letters) for those Cyrillic characters that are rendered by more than a single Latin character. These ligatures, however, are seldom actually used and it is acceptable to work without them. Otherwise, these two schemes are obligatory in the form presented below.

You may consult the Library of Congress Romanization tables here.

Typographical nicety begs for the rendering of the soft sign as a prime rather than a curved single quote (single smart or "curly" quote), and the hard sign as a double prime (typewriter double quote) rather than a curved close quote (double smart or "curly" quote). To achieve this in your word processor (Word or Windows WordPerfect) you must temporarily shut off the feature that converts "straight" quotation marks to "curly" ones. In WordPerfect go to Tools ==> Quick Correct ==> Smart Quotes. In Word go to Tools ==> AutoCorrect ==>AutoFormat As You Type. Since you will shut off this feature only to type one character (single or double quote) and then turn it on again, it is convenient to write a macro that does this. Bear in mind that if you include these primes in any search and replace operation, they will be converted to "curly" quotes automatically. In WP5.1 there is no SmartQuotes feature.

The special symbols in the tables below are available in both Word and WordPerfect (and other word processors). In Word go to Insert ==> Symbol and scroll down the window to reach the Latin Extended A set, which contains these symbols. In WordPerfect type Control-W (Control-V in WP5.1) to access Insert ==> Symbol and select from the Multinational set.



Cyrillic Transliteration Table
Cyrillic CharacterInternational SystemLibrary of Congress International Phonetic Alphabet Library of Congress
Аaa aa
Бbb bb
Вvv vv
Гhh gg
Дdd dd
Eee ee
Жž (z hacek)zh ž (z hacek)zh
Зzz zz
Иyy ii
Іii ii
Їjiї or i
Йji ji
Кkk kk
Лll ll
Мmm mm
Нnn nn
Оoo oo
Пpp pp
Рrr rr
Сss ss
Тtt tt
Уuu uu
Фff ff
Хxkh xkh
Цcts cts
Чč (c hacek)ch č (c hacek) ch
Шš (s hacek) sh š (s hacek)sh
Щšč (s hacek c hacek)shch šč (s hacek c hacek)shch
Юjuiu juiu
Яjaia jaia
Ь'' ''
' " " " "
Ё ë (e diaeresis)ë e diaeresis
Э ė (e dot)ė (e dot)
Ъ " "
Ы yy