How to say the H in Spanish – Easy pronunciation lesson
Podcast episode 42 – SEE ALL EPISODES
Hi, welcome back to Speak Spanish with Maria Fernandez. I’m Maria Fernandez, a native Spanish teacher and the author of courses like Learn Spanish At Your Own Pace, which you can find on Amazon.
Today we’ve got another great pronunciation question.
See also: Maria’s step-by-step Spanish courses.
Today’s question comes from Hilary, one of my newsletter subscribers. Hilary wants to know how to pronounce the H at the beginning of words.
How to say the H in Spanish: rule
The rule on how to pronounce the initial H in Spanish, is very straightforward. This rule says: The H at the beginning of Spanish words is always silent.
Unfortunately, as we’ve seen in other lessons, the temptation to pronounce words like in English is big. Especially when they look very similar in both languages. That’s why we’re going to practice here some words and sentences with an H. Remember that in all those words, the H is silent.
How to say the H in Spanish: speaking practice
I’m going to say 10 words in Spanish that look very similar in English. To avoid confusion, today I’m not going to give you the English translation.
These are the 10 words. Repeat after me:
Let’s say them once more. Remember that the H in these 10 words is silent. Repeat after me.
How to say the H in Spanish: sentence practice
Now, we’re going to practice saying 5 sentences with the letter H. Let’s start:
El hotel y el hospital están en Holanda.
The hotel and the hospital are in Holland.
La habitación de mi hermano es azul.
My brother’s bedroom is blue.
Horacio es un hombre honrado.
Horace is an honest man.
Esta hamburguesa es horrible.
This hamburger is horrible.
El hipopótamo no está en el helicóptero.
The hippopotamus is not in the helicopter.
Let’s say those sentences again.
How to say the H in Spanish: exceptions
You may be wondering whether there are any exceptions to the rule we’ve seen in this lesson. And there are indeed a few words in Spanish with a non-silent H. But they’re not really an exception, since the Spanish pronunciation rules do not apply to foreign words, and those words tend to come from English. For example: hall (hall), hobby (hobby).
But remember that that’s just a handful of words. Spanish words have a silent H.
Find out more about my Spanish courses.
Please, leave a review
Thanks a lot for listening to my Spanish learning podcast.
If you like what I’ve created for you, please leave a review on your favourite app. That’ll push up my ranking and more people like you will be able to find this podcast.
It takes less than a minute. Thanks! ¡Gracias!