Sounds and Pronunciation
Asturian has 5 vowels: a, e, i, o and u.
The vowels e and o, however, are reduced
in unstressed position to [i] and [u].
Note that the masculine forms for singular of both the nouns and the
adjectives are written with -u, cf.:
Ast. verbu versus Sp. verbo,
The letter y, pronounced [j] as the y in the English
yet, is red [i] in two cases:
Ast. gatu versus Sp. gato etc.
The letter i represents the sound [j] in the final diphthongs and triphthongs
(in Spanish is written y), as in:
In the atonic form -y him of the personal
pronoun for 3 p. sg. of accusative (= Sp. le):
Ast. Díxo-y que sí versus
Sp. Le dijo que sí.
Ast. Merqué-y daqué versus
Sp. Le compré algo.
Note that this pronoun is preceded always by dash.
In the copulative conjunction y and (= Sp. y):
Xabel y Sandra, el fíu y la fía.
Ast. la llei versus Sp. la
Ast. yo toi versus Sp. yo
Ast. hai xente versus Sp. hay
Asturian has 19 consonants.
The corresponding letters are pronounced as in Spanish
with the following exceptions:
the soft c (i.e. c before e or
i) is pronounced [s];
the letter z is pronounced [s];
the letter g is read always [g];
the letter x is pronoiunced as the English sh in shop
(in this it is similar to Galician): roxu = Sp. rojo;
the digraph ll is pronounced as the English ch: llobu
= Sp. lobo;
in Eastern Asturia and León the initial f- before
vowel is replaced by an aspirated h-, pronounced as the English
h n home, cf. facer vs. hacer
= Sp. hacer.
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