In Spanish there are 5 distinct vowels, and each one has only one constant, clear, and brief sound. In every syllable, each vowel must be pronounced. Furthermore, vowels fall into 2 categories: strong and weak.
Category English word Examples a Strong like in father Ana e Strong like in eight Enrique i Weak like in teeth Inés o Strong no without the glide Omar u Weak like in tooth Lula
DIPHTHONG is the union of two vowels that form a syllable:
- two weak and unstressed vowels, i or u.
- one weak and one strong vowel, a , e or o.
Both vowels are pronounced as one syllable. This is unlike English diphthongs (stay, joy) the original sound of each vowel must be maintained.
If a weak vowel of a union is stressed, the vowels are separated into separate syllables as follows:
- día/ dí-a/day
However, if the strong vowel is stressed, the vowels cannot be separated.
The union of two strong vowels does NOT form a diphthong.
TRIPHTHONG is the union of 3 vowels, one stressed or strong vowel between 2 unstressed or weak vowels in a syllable.
LESSON: Compensation I
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