How do you correctly pronounce yin and yang in American English? Especially the "yang" part because I hear it pronounced as it's spelled and also I think I've heard it like "yong".

If you use IPA please also give some rhyming words because IPA doesn't practically help me.

  • 1
    Merriam-Webster says there are two pronunciations for yang: either it rhymes with hang or it rhymes with the first syllable of Congo. (But it doesn't rhyme with long, unless you're one of these people who pronounce Don and Dawn the same.) Commented Sep 23, 2015 at 21:12
  • it's pronounced as "young". how hard is it to get it right?
    – user173976
    Commented May 6, 2016 at 15:45

1 Answer 1


yang (in American English) is pronounced somewhere between "yang" (rhyming with bang) and "yong" (rhyming with bong). Think of the first sound in the word "yacht", then add a "ng" at the end. That's as close as it's going to get. But it isn't really a pure "-ong" sound.

But if that's tricky, you can say it as rhymes with "bang" or "bong". No one will mind too much.

  • This answer doesn't work for people on the East Coast who pronounce Don and Dawn differently. Commented Sep 23, 2015 at 21:14
  • Are you referring to my use of the word "yawn" as an example? I can switch it to something else.
    – Yee-Lum
    Commented Sep 23, 2015 at 21:15
  • Yes, don or swan would work a lot better. Commented Sep 23, 2015 at 21:17
  • I've edited it to "yacht", to keep that initial y sound for simplicity's sake. How's that?
    – Yee-Lum
    Commented Sep 23, 2015 at 21:18
  • yacht is fine. Commented Sep 23, 2015 at 21:18

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