Q:

How can you learn to properly pronounce Hispanic names?

A:

Quick Answer

To learn how to properly pronounce Hispanic names, read a pronunciation guide for every letter in the Spanish alphabet and for letter combinations that create unique sounds. Make each sound out loud as you read it.

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Full Answer

Start by learning the pronunciation of the Spanish vowels, which always have the same pronunciation. "A" sounds like the "a" sound in the English word "father." "E" has a long "a" sound like the "a" sound in the word "gate." "I" has a long "e" sound like the "i" sound in the word "machine."

"O" sounds like the "o" sound in the word "go." "U" sounds like the "u" sound in the word "rule." Unlike English, the Spanish "u" doesn't have a "y" sound preceding it when it's the first letter of a word.

Pronunciation of Spanish consonants varies depending on the consonant and the word. Several consonants, including "d," "f," "k," "l" and "m," sound similar or identical to their English counterparts. There is an exception for two "l's" that are next to each other, which make a "y" sound.

Pronunciation for some letters varies depending on the origin of the Spanish-speaker. For example, in Spain, they pronounce the letter "z" with a "th" sound. In Southern American countries, they pronounce the same letter with a "s" sound.

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