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Letter

Phonetic
Pronunciation
oI the Letter
Pronunciation oI the Sound
Example
Word
Phonetic
Pronunciation oI the
Example Word
A a ah as the a in awesome casa CAHsah
B b beh as the b in bed hablar Ahblahdd
C c she
as the s in sing or as the c
in come
cinco
comer
SEENkoh
KOHmehdd
Ch ch cheh as the ch in change cucaracha kookahDDAHchah
D d deh
as the d in dog when an
initial letter oI a word or
syllable and when aIter n or
l
OR as a very soIt th when
between vowels (like the
"dd"in buddy
de
pescado
cerdo
deh
pehsCAHtho
SEHddtho
E e eh as the a in hay clase CLAHseh
F I eh-Ieh as the I in Iair Ieria IehddEEah
G g heh
as the g in good
OR as the h in hello when
it comes beIore an e or i
grande
inteligente
gddAHNde
eentehlyHEHnteh
H h ah-cheh the h is always silent hola Ohlah
I i ee as the ee in jeep inteligente
J j hoh-tah
as the h in hello, only
harder
mujer mooHEHDD
K k kah as the c in care kilo KEEloh
L l eh-leh as the l in like leer lehEHDD
Ll ll eh-yeh
as the y in yawn, heavily
stressed (oIten pronouced
as the j in jelly)
llamar yahMAHDD
M m eh-meh as the m in man maana mahnYAHnah
N n eh-neh as the n in name nada NAHthah
ehn-yeh as the ny in canyon nio NEENyoh
O o oh as the o in slope
primero
ahora
preeMEHddoh
ahOHdda
P p peh as the p in pan papas PAHpahs
Q q koo
as the k in key (always
Iollowed by a silent u)
que
qui
kay
key
R r eh-rreh
as the r in ring with a slight
roll
OR as a soIt d as in
medicine
restaurante
periodico
amarillo
rehstahooDDAHnteh
ahmahDDEEyoh
pehddeeOHtheekoh
RR rr eh-rrrreh
as the r in ring with a Iull
roll
cerrado sehddddAHtho
S s eh-she as the s in sun siempre seeEHMpddeh
T t the as the t in top tierra teeEHddddah
U u oo as the u in duty uno Oonoh
V v oo-veh as the b in bed vaca BAHkah
W w
oo-veh
doh-bleh
as the w in wander western wehSTEHddn
La Pronunciacin del Alphabeto Espaol
x eh-kees
as the s in sam
OR as the h in hello
experto
Mexico
ehsPEHDDtoh
mehHEEkoh
Y y
ee gree-eh-
gah
as the ee in jeep
OR as the y in yawn/j in
jelly when beIore a vowel
rey
yo
dddehEE
yoh
Z z seh-tah as the s in sun cerveza sehddBEHsah
Dipthong
Phonetic
Pronunciation
oI the Sound
Example
ai ah-ee baile
au ah-oo
ei eh-ee
seis
treinta
ia ee-ah seria
ie ee-eh nieto
oi oh-ee oido
oa oh-ah
ua oo-ah
agua
cuando
ue 47 e
oo-eh
abuelo
cuerpo
que
ui 47 i
oo-eh guia
qui
uo oo-oh
With Spanish diphthongs, both letters are pronounced, one slightly weaker than the other
(usually the i or the u). The two letters are pronounced so close together (almost slurred)
that it is very hard Ior an English speaker to hear them as separate. When Iirst learning
Spanish words, you should make the eIIort to pronounce both letters, even though that is
not truly correct, otherwise some bad mispronunciations could cause you to be
misunderstood.
II the vowel combination has an accent mark over either letter, this "splits" the combination
and they are pronounced totally separately. UnIortunately, in Mexico the common suIIix -
ria that should almost always have the accent mark, -ria, but rarely has it, so be careIul. It's
pronounced RREE ah, most oI the time.
$panish Dipthongs
Notes
when ue is aIter g or q, the u is silent
when ui is aIter g or q, the u is silent
Stress: The stress in most words depends on the last letter oI the word: II it's a vowel (a e i o
u) or n or s, the stress is on the next-to-last syllable, e.g., tacos, seora (accent ma78 f47
thi8 guide 4nly ), otherwise it's on the last syllable, e.g., seor, nacional, comer (accent
ma78 f47 thi8 guide 4nly ). Only words that don't Iollow these rules are written with an
accent mark to let you know which is the stressed syllable.
Some written single syllable words have an accent mark that has nothing to do with
pronunciation, they are only there to diIIerentiate the word Irom one with the identical
spelling but a diIIerent meaning, e.g., si yes, si -iI. Sometimes the accent mark is used
to "split" a vowel combination such as ia or uo, which puts the stress on the syllable ending
with the accented letter.
Spanlsh Word honeLlc ronunclaLlon
casa
hablar
clnco
comer
cucaracha
de
pescado
cerdo
espanol
ferla
lnLellgenLe
grande
hola
mu[er
kllo
leer
llamar
nada
nlno
manana
prlmero
ahora
papas
que
qul
resLauranLe
perldlco
amarlllo
cerrado
slempre
Llerra
uno
vaca
experLo
Mexlco
rey
yo
cerveza