The pronunciation of words can largely be predicted from the spelling.
The Spanish language is written using the Spanish alphabet, which is the Latin
alphabet with one additional letter, eñe "ñ," for a total of 27 letters.
Although the letters "k" and "w" are part of the alphabet, they appear only in
loanwords such as karate, kilo, water polo and wolframio 'tungsten.' Each letter
has a single official name according to the Real Academia Española's new
2010 Common Orthography,
In 1995 the Spanish alphabet was revised to eliminate most of the compound
letters. Therefore, the Spanish alphabet has all the letters of the English
alphabet except for the additional ñ. However, many dictionaries still adhere
to the traditional letters. Some Latin American countries have not decided to
follow Spain's lead in this matter.
The letter H is always silent. You might try to pretend it is invisible too,
when you see words with h's. For example, the verb hay is pronounced like the
English word "eye," not like the horse-food! Alcohol is pronounced "al-col" as
if there were no 'h' in the middle. Don't forget that ch is a separate letter
that cannot be split. Ch has the same pronunciation in Spanish as it does in