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2 Vote

De curiosidad , quiero saber por que se usa la letra "H" cuando no se pronuncialo . En mi opinion , la sola usa de "h" que he visto hasta ahora es el sonido de "ch" como "marCHar"

Gracias por ayudarme.

  • Posted Jul 6, 2010
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  • Sé una palabra en español que pronuncia la "h". - Deanski Apr 4, 2011 flag

9 Answers

4 Vote

La letra 'H' es utilizado por ortografía, no es utilizado por pronunciación. Esto es que mi maestro me dijo.

2 Vote

Spanish is not a phonetic language. However, it and Italian are more (nearly) phonetic than other European languages. There are several changes that would need to be made in the orthography (in addition to eliminating the 'h') but these changes are resisted because they tell us something about the history of the language and because it's close enough to being phonetic that correct spelling is not a big problem for the natives.

  • What do you mean by other European languages? Appart from French and English the others are pretty phonetic, aren't they? - rabbitwho Apr 4, 2011 flag
  • As mentioned, Italian is mostly phonetic. If nothing else their use of "ch" (more than one letter) to represent the 'k' sound would disqualify it The pronunciation of the lette 'c' depends on what follows it (as in Spanish), - samdie Apr 4, 2011 flag
  • But a different pronunciation when followed by some other vowel. What little Italian I know, I learnded from watching movies but I am sure that it is not truly phonetic. - samdie Apr 4, 2011 flag
2 Vote

I have three text books that would disagree.

I'll bet they are not books about linguistics. For linguists (phoneticians, et al) 'phonetic' has a straightforward meaning i.e. that there is a one-to-one correspondence between the sounds of a language and the symbols used to represent them. So none of this "the letter X can be pronounced as Y or as Z (depending on the context" nor "the sound X can be represented by the letter Y or Z."

Admittedly, many people (especially those unfamiliar with linguistics) use 'phonetic' to mean "the spelling is more-or-less regular" but, if that is the standard to be applied, then a trifling matter like a silent 'h' hardly merits discussion.

1 Vote

La H no se pronuncia, no tiene sentido, pero es así. CH si se pronuncia, antes se consideraba una letra distinta : A, B, C, CH, D, E, F, G, H, I, J...

1 Vote

Spanish is not a phonetic language.

I have three text books that would disagree.

I agree with your points, there are exceptions in Spanish that 'disqualify' it from being a truly phonetic language, but just how close do you have to be to 'qualify'? Compared to English, Spanish is an 'out of the park' home run (phonetically speaking).

  • Compared to English, almost any language is phonetic. - samdie Jul 7, 2010 flag
  • Right! :) - 00e657d4 Apr 4, 2011 flag
0 Vote

do you know for serbian language? It's all phonetic. I'm studing it so... wink

¡Sabéis del idioma serbia, es todo fonetico!

0 Vote

Spanish spelling is a combination of attempts to make it phonetically regular and remain faithful to its etymological roots. Obviously, when words and pronunciation change, you cannot have both, which is the problem we have in Spanish. While the way it is read is a nearly perfect system, writing it is another story, because one sound can be accomplished in many different ways. For example, these made-up words have all the same sound:

agece

hagece

ajece

hajece

ageze

hageze

ajeze

hajeze

And that's not an exhaustive list, of course. While Spanish has the distinct advantage that (almost) all words can be accurately read and stressed, it is far from perfect in terms of writing. As I said, many people prefer the language to reflect its origin despite the detriment to the regularity of its spelling.

English shows a strange obsession with keeping ancient spellings despite their non-intuitive spelling, while modifying other words to suit the expected pronunciation of English, even though it is not the original, resulting in a completely unpredictable spelling system. You never know how to read a word or write a sound; some words show spelling, while others show phonetics. At least Spanish can be trusted when it comes to reading (well... less and less every day, because copying English seems fashionable)

0 Vote

do you know for serbian language? It's all phonetic. I'm studing it so... wink

¿¡Sabéis del idioma serbia, es todo fonetico!?

0 Vote

What do you mean by other European languages? Appart from French and English the others are pretty phonetic, aren't they?

As mentioned, Italian is mostly phonetic. If nothing else their use of "ch" (more than one letter) to represent the 'k' sound would disqualify it The pronunciation of the letter 'c' depends on what follows it (as in Spanish), The pronunciation of the lette 'c' depends on what follows it (as in Spanish), when followed by 'e' or 'i' is has cone sound but when followed bay another vowel, a different sound. What little Italian I know, I learned from watching movies but I am sure that it is not truly phonetic. I am reasonably certain that Portuguese (like Spanish) is mostly phonetic but I can't provide any examples.

I only took one semester of German so I can't speak with any authority but consider the word for "German" (the language), "Deutsch"; the final 'tsch' actually represents only two sounds (in the IPA). This is certainly not a one-to-one correspondence between sounds and letters.

Although I studied classical Greek, my knowledge of modern Greek is very limited. The counter-example that comes to mind is the word for "thank you" (Eυχαριστώ in Greek). The word is pronounced (using an English approximation) "Efharisto." The second letter 'υ' is only sometimes (I think, only in the combination "eu") pronounced as an 'f'.

The dozen (or so) words/phrases that I know in Russian do not provide counter-examples. The only phrase that I know in Polish would not be permitted on this site (it's not "family friendly").

I have seen statement to the effect that the Vietnamese writing system is phonetic but I know that to be untrue (it's mostly phonetic). I have also seen statements that the Korean writing system is phonetic but I don't know a single word of Korean. The writing systems of both Vietnamese and Korean were revised fairly recently (within the last 100 years) and the revisions were intended to bring spelling into line with pronunciation (make the spelling phonetic). I suspect that the results for Korean (and I know that the results for Vietnamese) were approximate.

When one ventures into the realm of accurate transcription of sounds, the problem becomes much worse. The universal pronunciation of 'd', v'|'b', 'g' and several other letters depends on the phonetic context of the letter. Most sources (unless you ask someone like Lazarus [who is a stickler for details]) will suggest a single pronunciation for these letters. Most discussions will suggest a single pronunciation. In fact, virtually all Spanish speakers use two different sounds for them. In rough terms (Lazarus can supply the real circumstances), The consonant is word-initial, it has one pronunciation but if it is intervocalic, it has another (slightly different) pronunciation. The technical term being "allophones".

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