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Lesson Transcript

Beatriz: Bienvenidos a Spanishpod101.com. Buenos días, me llamo Beatriz.
Joseph: Joseph here. Spanish Phonetic Series, Lesson 6 – “Accentuation – Part 1”.
Beatriz: Bienvenidos.
Joseph: Welcome.
Beatriz: I am Beatriz and I’m joined by Joseph. ¿Qué dices Joseph?
Joseph: Todo bien, gracias. Hi there. Welcome to the sixth lesson of the Spanish Phonetic Series of Spanishpod101.com. Here, you’ll learn all the basics of pronunciation, intonation, inflexion and spelling, which will make it a lot easier to speak, as well as understand the Spanish language.
Beatriz: So, join us for this lesson of Spanishpod101.com.
Joseph: In our last Phonetics Lesson, we studied diphthongs.
Beatriz: Los diptongos.
Joseph: Explaining what arising and falling diphthongs are and we offered a number of examples for these using different vowel combinations. Today, we’re going to move on and start looking at accentuation.
LESSON FOCUS
Beatriz: La acentuación.
Joseph: That’s right. This time, we’ll study where the stress should fall on words in Spanish. We’ll also look at a common mistake made by students when they’re starting to learn accentuation in Spanish. And then, we’ll finish by doing some practice so that you can apply what we covered in this lesson. Before we start, I just want to add that this lesson provides a great opportunity to learn about the rhythm of Spanish. And one way to apply what you learn is by listening to the regional audio blogs from Madrid, España, and la Ciudad de México, México. As we said, in this lesson we’ll study accentuation.
Beatriz: La acentuación.
Joseph: Así es, la acentuación. Now, Beatriz, how would you like to start out today?
Beatriz: Bueno. Hoy día, Joseph, empecemos explicando las cuatro categorías de las palabras polisílabas.
Joseph: Ok. That sounds like a good idea. So, today we’ll begin by explaining the four categories of polysyllabic words. And before we do that, let’s just mention that a polysyllabic word is simply one that has multiple syllables.
Beatriz: Claro, una palabra polisílaba es la que tiene múltiples sílabas.
Joseph: Great. So, Beatriz, what are these four categories then?
Beatriz: Las cuatro categorías son: palabras agudas, palabras llanas, palabras esdrújulas y palabras sobreesdrújulas.
Joseph: Ok. So, we have palabras agudas, llanas, esdrújulas y sobreesdrújulas. Wow. These aren’t very common words, are they?
Beatriz: Es verdad, no son palabras cotidianas. Sin embargo, son términos precisos que describen bien la acentuación de las palabras.
Joseph: You know, that’s a good point. Well, these aren’t every day words, they are on the other hand very precise terms that describe the accentuation of words in Spanish.
Beatriz: Así es.
Joseph: So, for today, let’s just focus on “las palabras agudas” y “las palabras llanas” and we’ll save the other two categories for next lesson. So, Beatriz, what is “una palabra aguda”?
Beatriz: Bueno, en verdad no es nada difícil. Una palabra aguda es la que lleva el acento prosódico en la última sílaba.
Joseph: Aha, ya veo. “Una palabra aguda” is a word that has a prosodic accent in the last syllable. In linguistics, the technical term for this kind of word is an oxitone. So, if you’re familiar with linguistics that should help you out. And if you’re not, don’t worry. Our saying by this is that the accent falls on the last syllable of the word. Also, don’t confuse a prosodic accent with an emphatic or graphic accent. Prosodic accents don’t necessarily require a graphic accent. So, Beatriz, could you give us an example of “una palabra aguda”?
Beatriz: “Café”.
Joseph: “Café”. Right. So, here we have the word “café” and we see that it has two syllables, which are?
Beatriz: “Ca-fé”.
Joseph: And we can also see that the stress falls on the second syllable. “Café”.
Beatriz: “Café”.
Joseph: Right. Now, it’s important to remember that “una palabra aguda” can have more than two syllables as long as the last one is the one that’s accented.
Beatriz: That’s right. For example, “corazón”.
Joseph: “Corazón”. And here, we see that there are three syllables, which are?
Beatriz: “Co-ra-zón”.
Joseph: That’s it. And again, the stress falls on the last syllable. And, because of this, we call it “una palabra aguda”.
Beatriz: Eso no fue tan difícil, ¿verdad?
Joseph: Para nada. Now, let’s move on to “las palabras llanas”. These are sometimes called “palabras graves”, but for our purposes, we’ll use the term “llanas”. So, Beatriz, what is “una palabra llana”?
Beatriz: Dicho de forma sencilla, una palabra llana es la que lleva el acento prosódico en la penúltima sílaba.
Joseph: Muy bien. “Una palabra llana” is simply a word that has a prosodic accent on the second to last syllable. Ok. That doesn’t sound too hard. So, Beatriz, what would be an example of it?
Beatriz: “Maleta”, “ma-le-ta”.
Joseph: “Maleta”. So, here, we see that the word has three syllables: “ma-le-ta”. And it’s the second to last syllable that has the prosodic accent and in this case the second to last syllable is simply the second syllable because they’re three. So, again. I just want to make sure that we’re on the same page here. We’re talking about prosodic accents which are stresses and the prosody rhythm. But not emphatic or graphic accents, which require writing an accent mark above the vowel.
Beatriz: Ahora veremos un error común relacionado a la acentuación en el idioma español.
Joseph: Sounds great, Beatriz. Now we’ll look at a common mistake related to accentuation in the Spanish language. So, what would you say as one of the most common mistakes made by students who are just starting to learn accentuation?
Beatriz: Bueno, sería usar una mala acentuación con el acento prosódico.
Joseph: So, you think it’s pretty common for students to confuse the prosodic accent?
Beatriz: Sí, pues.
Joseph: In what way?
Beatriz: Es como que acentúen una sílaba que no debería llevar acento prosódico.
Joseph: Now I see. So, students often accent a syllable that shouldn’t receive a prosodic accent. And what happens when this accent is confused with “las palabras agudas” and “las palabras llanas”?
Beatriz: Well, it becomes a lot more difficult to pronounce.
Joseph: That’s a good point. So, when the prosodic accents are correctly placed, the words are easier to pronounce. And in terms of being understood, if this accent is mistaken, would the word still be understandable?
Beatriz: Probablemente. Pero seguramente sonaría raro y sería más posible que haya confusión.
Joseph: So, if we make this mistake, we would probably still be understood, but on the other hand, a confusion would be more likely. All right. Now we’re going to do some practice.
Beatriz: La práctica.
Joseph: Today, we’ll give examples of “las palabras agudas” y “las palabras llanas”. Let’s start out with “las palabras agudas” which have the prosodic accent on the last syllable. Beatriz, why don’t you begin by giving us an example? Then I’ll say how many syllables the word has. After that, you can break it down, syllable by syllable, and finally we’ll repeat it in normal speed.
Beatriz: Muy bien, Joseph.
Joseph: Ok. Vamos. So, the first “palabra aguda” is?
Beatriz: “Frijol”.
Joseph: And this has two syllables. So, the prosodic accent is on the second, which is the last.
Beatriz: “Fri-jol”.
Joseph: “Frijol”.
Beatriz: “Frijol”.
Joseph: Great. Now, the next “palabra aguda” is?
Beatriz: “Cantar”.
Joseph: Again, this has two syllables and accordingly, the prosodic accent is on the second, which is the last.
Beatriz: “Can-tar”.
Joseph: “Cantar”.
Beatriz: “Cantar”.
Joseph: Great. Now, the next “palabra aguda” is?
Beatriz: “Soportar”.
Joseph: Ok. Now, this one has three syllables and accordingly, the prosodic accent is on the third, again, which is the last.
Beatriz: “So-por-tar”.
Joseph: “Soportar”.
Beatriz: “Soportar”.
Joseph: Great. Now, the next “palabra aguda” is?
Beatriz: “Maratón”.
Joseph: Again, this one has three syllables and so the prosodic accent is on the third, which is also the last.
Beatriz: “Ma-ra-tón”.
Joseph: “Maratón”.
Beatriz: “Maratón”.
Joseph: Ok. Now, the last “palabra aguda” that we’re going to look at is?
Beatriz: “Estacionar”.
Joseph: Ok. And this one has four syllables, so the prosodic accent is on the fourth syllable, which is the last one.
Beatriz: “Es-ta-cio-nar”.
Joseph: “Estacionar”.
Beatriz: “Estacionar”.
Joseph: That’s great. Now, let’s move on to “las palabras llanas” which have the prosodic accent on the second to last syllable. The first example is?
Beatriz: “Árbol”.
Joseph: And this one has two syllables. So, the prosodic accent is on the first, which is the second to last.
Beatriz: “Ár-bol”.
Joseph: “Árbol”.
Beatriz: “Árbol”.
Joseph: Ok, great. Now, the next “palabra llana” is?
Beatriz: “Hueso”.
Joseph: This also has two syllables and just like we saw with the last example, the prosodic accent is on the first syllable which is the second to last.
Beatriz: “Hue-so”.
Joseph: “Hueso”.
Beatriz: “Hueso”.
Joseph: Ok. This time, the “palabra llana” that we’ll look at is?
Beatriz: “Campana”.
Joseph: And here there’re three syllables. So, the prosodic accent is on the second, which is the second to last.
Beatriz: “Cam-pa-na”.
Joseph: “Campana”.
Beatriz: “Campana”.
Joseph: Muy bien. Now, the next “palabra llana” is?
Beatriz: “Accidente”.
Joseph: And this time, there are four syllables. So, the prosodic accent will be on the third, which is the second to last.
Beatriz: “Ac-ci-den-te”.
Joseph: “Accidente”.
Beatriz: “Accidente”.
Joseph: That’s really good. Ok. The last “palabra llana” that we’ll look at today is?
Beatriz: “Filosofía”.
Joseph: And with this word there are five syllables. So, the prosodic accent is on the fourth, which is the second to last.
Beatriz: “Fi-lo-so-fí-a”.
Joseph: “Filosofía”.
Beatriz: “Filosofía”.
OUTRO
Joseph: Ok. Muy bien. You can see that that’s not as hard as it seems, you know. And we’re talking about these words that describe the different syllables that seems like it’s going to be really difficult, but in actuality it’s not.
Beatriz: No, amigos, no lo es. Solo se trata de practicar, ¿no Joseph?
Joseph: That’s right. You just need to practice, but it’s really not that difficult. Ok. This is as far as we’ll go today. Don’t forget to check out the Newbie Series in SpanishPod101.com, the great place to learn the basics of the Spanish language. We’ll see you soon!
Beatriz: ¡Ya nos vemos!

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SpanishPod101.com
Friday at 6:30 pm
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Who can give some more examples of "palabras agudas"? And how about some more examples of "palabras llanas"?

Jessi
Thursday at 2:56 pm
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Hi Milton,

Sorry about that! It has been added :) Thank you!

Milton Sanders
Thursday at 11:38 am
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This lesson has no review track. However it still was a good lesson. Thanks