Spanish Language Uncategorized


Mexico has the most native Spanish speakers in the world (121 million), with the United States coming in second with roughly 60 and there isS. AMERICAN SPANISH milliMore over 500 million people speak Spanish as a native language, making it the world’s second most spoken language after Mandarin Chinese. Around 45 million of those 500 million people live in Spain, but the bulk are from nations in the Americas

. on.

This issue may appear difficult since those differences cannot be compared to the differences between American and British English for a minor reason:

Spain has more dialectal variants than the rest of the Americas combined. Conquerors and settlers from the same Spanish areas colonized Latin America. They brought their accent with them, and it stayed…

As a result, accents from the south of Spain (particularly Extremadura, West Andalusia, and the Canary Islands) may have more in common with Latin American dialects than with accents from the north.
These are, of course, broad principles. Accents that are more similar to northern accents can be found in several places of Latin America. For example, the accents of the people of the capitals of the two viceroyalties, Mexico and Peru, presently Mexico DF and Lima, exhibit some similarities to the accents of the inhabitants of the other viceroyalties.

However, there are some shared aspects that make the d

Spanish Phonetics

  • In most of Spain, the sounds spelled with “c” or “z” are pronounced as a /θ/, while in some parts of Spain and in Latin America, it is pronounced as an /s/
  • Intonation of the language in Latin America is more musical than in Spain.

Apart from phonetics, there are important differences in the use of the persons, like:

ifference. Any native speaker of Spanish would be able to tell you if another speaker is from (or learned Spanish in) Spain or Latin America. The reason has to do with phonetics:

The Application of Vosotros

In America, we use ustedes instead of vosotros (2nd person plural). Again, it is common in some places of Spain, although in general, vosotros is favored.

In a discussion between a Latin American and a Spaniard, it is usual for the Spaniard to be perplexed when addressed with ustedes, and may resort to the customary tutéame, por favor, believing that they have been addressed officially. Consider the following exchange:

[Sp] Hello, Mara. ¿qué tal? We’re going on an adventure tomorrow. Do you want to come?

Hello, Maria. How are you doing? We’re going on a trip tomorrow. Would you like to come?

[LA] Juan Claro. Thank you very much. Where exactly are they going? Can I bring my girlfriend?

Juan, of course. Thank you kindly. Where precisely are you going? Is it okay if I bring my boyfriend?

[Sp] We’re going up the mountain. It’s obvious that you can bring your fiancee. Do you want to join us?

The Application of Vos

Argentina, Uruguay, Paraguay, Central American nations, and portions of Bolivia and Colombia, for example, use vos instead of t. In Argentina and Uruguay, the conjugation is distinct from the t conjugation.

The origin is rather mysterious, as it was used reverently in Spain. In Medieval Spain, individuals used vos (with different conjugations than now) to address strong persons or authority. Around the 15th century, this use was “exported” to America, with vos being used in more familiar contexts and usted being the polite form.

Using Vos

Some Latin American nations use vos instead of t, including Argentina, Uruguay, Paraguay, Central American countries, and parts of Bolivia and Colombia. The conjugation used in Argentina and Uruguay is distinct from the t conjugation.

Its origins are intriguing, as it was used reverently in Spain. In Medieval Spain, individuals used vos (with different conjugations from now) to address strong persons or authority. Around the 15th century, this style was “exported” to America, with vos employed in more familiar contexts and usted as the polite alternative.

And Vocabulary Differences between Castilian and Latin American Spanish?

Maybe this is one of the main distinctive differences. As you may imagine, vocabulary would vary from country to country, but there are some concepts that are said in exactly one way in Latin America and exactly in another way in Spain. Here are some examples:

SpainLatin AmericaEnglish
MóvilCelularCell phone
ConducirManejarTo drive
Hacerse dañoLastimarseGet hurt
Echar de menosExtrañarTo miss

Not only do we have synonyms, but also polysemic words, like coger, which is extensively used in Spain to mean “to catch”, while in most of Latin America, its use is very vulgar and means the sexual act. So you can imagine when a Latin American person comes to Spain and talks to his family by phone:

[LA visitor in Spain] Hola, mamá, ya llegué. Estoy muy feliz en España.

Hi mum, I already arrived. I’m very happy in Spain.

[LA mum in LA] Y cuéntame qué tal te va.

So tell me how you are doing.

España es muy linda, mamá. Pero los españoles hablan raro. Lo “cogen” todo. “Cogen” el autobús, “cogen” el teléfono”, “cogen” la silla”, “cogen el bolígrafo”…

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