The Spanish Alphabet - Spelling And Pronunciation

  Classes Of Professional Studies      31-03-2021

Have you made your mind about taking Spanish language classes? Great. You'll enjoy learning Spanish even if it is your first foreign language.

But do you know, Spanish alphabets and their pronunciation are the basis of getting fluent in Spanish?

Whether you are learning Spanish for fluency or conversational skills, you must make sure that you pronounce Spanish alphabets in the right way.

But first, let us understand the relation between English alphabets and Spanish alphabets.

English-Spanish Alphabets

English and Spanish alphabets differ only by one character ñ. According to the Royal Spanish Academy, the entire Spanish alphabet corresponds to the English alphabet. So if you know English well, Spanish alphabets and their pronunciation can seem much familiar to you.

This is not it.

Unlike the non-phonetic alphabets in the English language, Spanish alphabets make more sense. If you also struggled with the arbitrary spelling rules in English, you will love learning Spanish words with the correct pronunciation.

Let's learn more about English and Spanish alphabets with their pronunciation.

English alphabets Spanish alphabets Tips to pronounce Spanish alphabets
A A This alphabet is pronounced as ah depicting some sort of realization. For example, Ah! That is good.
B Be This letter is pronounced the same as the English letter b, but without touching your lips together. Just like the Spanish letter V.
C Ce This letter has dual sounds depending upon which Vowel appears next to it in a word. When followed by vowels such as a, o, or u, this alphabet is pronounced as the letter k in English. However, it sounds like an s when followed by an e or an I.
D De This alphabet sounds like th in the word then. Just remember to press your tongue against your upper teeth when using Spanish pronunciation.
E E This letter is pronounced more like the eh word in English.
F Efe This sounds similar to the English letter F.
G Ge This alphabet sounds similar to g in the English language. When used before Vowels e or i, it sounds more like j in Spanish.
H Hache This letter is often silent. However, a breathy aspiration is maintained when used in words adopted from other languages. For example Hacer, usually pronounced as ah-cer in Spanish.
I I This alphabet sounds more like a combination of double ee but not an elongated version.
J Jota This letter sounds different from the English alphabet j. Spanish j sounds more like a sound when you are trying to spit something up.
K Ca This alphabet sounds similar to English k.
L Ele The sound of this letter is somewhat close to the English L but not exactly similar to it. It is pronounced more like Elle in English.
LL Elle This letter sounds more like y in English.
M Eme It sounds similar to the letter m in English.
N Ene This letter is pronounced similar to the English letter n.
ñ Eñe It is a different letter from the English alphabet and sounds more like ni in onion.
O O O sounds similar in both Spanish and English language. Just remember to make it short when speaking.
P Pe This alphabet sounds more like an English P but with a shorter breath.
Q Cu This alphabet sounds like a k in English. And it is always followed by u.
R Ere This alphabet sounds similar to the letter d in English. For example, see how you pronounce d in the word in caddy in English. It's similar to this sound.
S Ese It sounds the same as the English letter s.
T Te The Spanish language uses a softer version of t used in the English language with less emphasis on releasing breath with your tongue.
U U This alphabet sounds more like the oo sound in food.
V Ve V in Spanish sounds more like the Spanish B.
W Doble ve This word sounds similar to the English w or you can hear some people using it as doble uve or doble u.
X Equis This alphabet sounds more like ks in English language. For example, books.
Y I griega Often this alphabet sounds like the English y. Sometimes it may sound like ye.
Z Zeta This letter is commonly pronounced with a lisp. More like a s in English word severe.

Besides the similarity between English and Spanish alphabets, both the languages share an abundance of cognates.

Spanish Cognates - Spelling and Pronunciation

Spanish cognates are evolved from a similar origin as English words and often spelt likewise. Some Spanish cognates are easy to recognize as they share identical spelling in English. However, you will have to understand the Spanish pronunciation of the word to get them right.

For example:

  • actor
  • alcohol
  • artificial
  • auto
  • brutal
  • capital
  • central
  • director
  • familiar
  • factor
  • gas
  • general
  • idea

Why learn Spanish alphabets and their pronunciation?

Learning Spanish alphabets and their pronunciation can help you familiarize yourself with the tone centric accent of the language. If you know how Spanish alphabets work, you will remember the whole thing for life.

Remember, alphabets contribute to the foundation of any language, and mastering them can accelerate your learning speed up to a hundred times. Try best methods practised in Spanish language classes to move beyond basic memorization techniques.

Spanish language classes: Learn how to master Spanish pronunciation

Spanish alphabets are easy to understand for most English speakers. However, the correct pronunciation determines the level of proficiency of a Spanish learner. Therefore, it is imperative to master your pronunciation skills before diving deep into language learning. This is when Spanish language classes step in. Learning to speak Spanish fluently through a Spanish course is one of the best ways to boost your language skills.

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