Alphabet (Alfabeto)

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Spanish uses the Latin alphabet.

The phonetic evoluthion, however, had brought about the introduction in the Spanish writing system of the additional letter Ñ (eñe) and the combinations Ch and Ll which are also considered letters.

Thus the Spanish alphabet consists of 28 letters:
 
Letter (Letra)
A a
B b
C c
Ch ch
D d
E e
F f
Letter Name
(Nombre de Letra)
a
[a]
be
['BE]
ce
['TE]
che
[tSE]
de
[dE]
e
[E]
efe
['EfE]
 
Letter (Letra)
G g
H h
I i
J j
K k
L l
Ll ll
Letter Name
(Nombre de Letra)
ge
[xE]
hache
['atSe]
i
[i]
jota
['xOta]
ka
[ka]
ele
['ElE]
elle
['EjE]
 
Letter (Letra)
M m
N n 
Ñ ñ
O o
P p
Q q
R r
Letter Name
(Nombre de Letra)
eme
['EmE]
ene
['EnE]
eñe
['eNe]
o
[O]
pe
[pE]
cu
[ku]
erre
['Er:E]
 
Letter (Letra)
S s
T t
U u
V v
X x
Y y
Z z
Letter Name
(Nombre de Letra)
ese
['EsE]
te
[tE]
u
[u]
uve
['uBE]
equis
['Ekis]
i griega
[i'grjega]
ceta
['TEta]
 

See the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA).


The letter K (ka) is used in foreign, mainly Greek, words only.

The letter W (uve doble) is used to transcribe German, English and other Nordic proper names or loan-words, but it is not considered a member of the alphabet. When listed in the dictionaries or encyclopaedias, W is placed between V and X.

When consulting the dictionaries, remember always that Ch and Ll are considered separate letters; thus in the wordlists coche car comes after cocodrilo crocodile and collado colin after columna column.

The Spanish authorities were often blamed by foreign factors (especially the EU institutions) for the unusual alphabet set which presents various difficulties to the word processors.

In 1998 the majority of the Spanish-speaking countries have agreed not to consider Ch and Ll separate letters anymore and this resolution is to bring about re-ordering the words in the new dictionaries.

In spite of the foreign suggestions the Ñ to be replaced by some combination of letters, it was nevertheless preserved with the emotional argument that its traditional usage has made it a component of the Spanish and Hispanic identity.
 



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