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Flashcards in Pronunciation Deck (29):
1

a

Like a in father

2

b

Like b in bad.

 

Between vowels, the lips should not be fully closed when pronouncing the sound (somewhat similar to the v in value, but much softer).

3

c

Before the vowels e and i, like th in thin (most of Spain) or like c in center (Parts of Andalucía, Canary Islands and Americas).


k Everywhere else; like c in coffee

4

ch

Like ch in church.

5

d

Does not have an exact English equivalent.

Sounds similar to the d in day, but instead of the tongue touching the roof of the mouth behind the teeth, it should touch the teeth themselves.


ð Between vowels, the tongue should be lowered so as to not touch the teeth (somewhat similar to the th in the).

6

e

Like e in ten, and the ay in say.

7

f

Like f in four.

8

g

Like g in get.


Between vowels (where the second vowel is a, o or u), the tongue should not touch the soft palate (no similar sound in English, but it's somewhat like Arabic ghain).


x Before the vowels e and i, like a Spanish j (see below).

9

h

Silent, unless combined with c (see above). Hu- or hi- followed by another vowel at the start of the word stand for /w/ (English w) and /j/(English y). Also used in foreign words like hámster, where it is pronounced like a Spanish j

10

i

Like e in he. Before other vowels, it approaches y in you.

11

j

12

k

Like the k in ask. Only used in words of foreign origin - Spanish prefers c and qu

13

l

Does not have an exact English equivalent. It is similar to the English "l" in line, but shorter, or "clipped." Instead of the tongue touching the roof of the mouth behind the teeth, it should touch the tip of the teeth themselves.

14

ll

Somewhat similar to li in million.

Does not have an English equivalent

 

15

m

16

n

17

ñ

Like gn in the Italian word lasagna.

As it's always followed by a vowel, the most similar sound in English is /nj/ (ny) + vowel, as in canyon, where the y is very short.

For example, when pronouncing "años", think of it as "anyos", or an-yos.

To practice, repeat the onomatopoeia of chewing: "ñam, ñam, ñam".

18

o

19

p

Like p in port.

20

q

Like q in quit.

As in English, it is always followed by a u, but before e or i, the u is silent (líquido is pronounced /'li.ki.ðo/).

The English /kw/sound is normally written cu in Spanish (cuanto), although qu can be used for this sound in front of a or o (quásar, quórum).

21

r

22

s

23

t

Like to the t in ten,

but instead of the tongue touching the roof of the mouth behind the teeth, it should touch the teeth themselves.

Does not have an exact English equivalent.

24

u

25

v

Identical to Spanish b (). The pronunciation "v" is regarded as an over-cultism

26

w

Pronunciation varies from word to word: watt is pronounced like bat or huat, but kiwiis always pronounced like quihui.

Used only in words of foreign origin

(Spanish prefers u).

 

27

x

Like ks (English x) in extra. In some cases it may be pronounced like gs or s.


ʃ In words of Amerindian origin, like sh in she.
x Note that x used to represent the sound of sh, which then evolved into the sound now written with j.

A few words have retained the old spelling, but have modern pronunciation /x/.

Most notably, México and its derivatives are pronounced like Méjico.

28

y

29

z

 s as in (elsewhere)