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15
votes
4answers
1k views

Why don't Spanish words start with “sp”?

I've noticed that there aren't any words in Spanish that start with sp. Latin words are altered to include an e in front of the sp. Even loan words are often modified to esp...: spaghetti => ...
12
votes
1answer
841 views

Approximant vs. fricative realization of /b/, /d/, /g/

According to the Wikipedia article on Spanish phonology, the phonemes /b/, /d/, and /g/ are realized as approximants or fricatives instead of plosives in all but certain contexts (after a pause, nasal ...
7
votes
1answer
477 views

Why does “toalla” sound like “tualla”?

I am a native speaker from Mexico and I just noticed that the word "toalla" when pronounced sounds as if it has an "u" instead of an "o" as if you were pronouncing "tualla". This also happens with ...
6
votes
2answers
286 views

Historical pronunciation of letters “b” and “v”

In another question, a Wikipedia article was quoted saying: The letters ⟨b⟩ and ⟨v⟩ were originally simply known as be and ve. However, there is no longer any distinction between the sounds of ...
6
votes
2answers
513 views

¿Cómo se deben pronunciar las palabras que empiezan con “hue”?

Español He notado que las letras "hue" de las palabras como: hueso, huerta y huevo son pronunciadas como "we" (español) como el nombre "Wenceslao", al menos aquí en México, en lugar de "ue". Por ...
4
votes
1answer
459 views

Latin /f/ to Spanish /h/

Many (most? all?) Spanish words containing the letter h come from corresponding Latin words containing the letter f. Through what process did /f/ get softened to /h/? During what time period did this ...
3
votes
1answer
302 views

Debuccalization of /s/ to [h]

What is meant in Spanish phonology by the debuccalization of /s/ to [h]? What dialects does this phenomenon primarily occur in? In those dialects, does it take place in all cases or only in some ...
2
votes
2answers
745 views

When do two vowels in Spanish form a diphthong? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Rules applied to the separation of syllables Diphthongs (or triphthongs) are sets of two or three vowels that are pronounced as a single syllable as opposed to being ...
0
votes
2answers
27 views

Is there a certain rule for s-aspiration

I noticed that my Spanish teacher sometimes does not pronunce the letter "s" in some syllables. For example, she says Ih-rael instead of Israel. Or she says "mah" instead of "mas". The thing is, she ...