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Author Topic: How to pronounce Nerja  (Read 41641 times)


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How to pronounce Nerja
« on: January 02, 2011, 06:34:56 AM »

I think that the j in Nerja should be pronounced like an H.

My mother in law from Birmingham inists on calling it Nurjja with a j and she says stuff like.

Weer guuin te nurja fu u olodiz

Thairs a groit noit loif in nurja

Can anyone independently confirm that Spanish Js are pronounced like an H.

My mother in law has such a strong accent  that people find it difficult to understand her.

If you are in Nerja and someone says to you.

Wadda yow dowin in Nurja? Ye on ye olodiz ier ar yow?

It is probably my mother in law.


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Re: How to pronounce Nerja
« Reply #1 on: January 02, 2011, 06:35:55 AM »
You are correct.

The Spanish J is pronounced a bit like an H.

Tecnically speaking it is a voiceless velar fricative and only exists in English in the word loch said with a Scottish accent.

Voiceless means the larynx is not vibrating.
Velar refers to the back of the mouth, almost in the throat.
Fricative means a sound made by vibrarions due to air being forced through a small space.

For an English speaker this may be a bit dificult to do perfectly and in the case of pronouncing Nerja
you may find it easier to say it with a K saying Nerka.

If you say Nerja with a K Spanish people will understand you but it is still not quite right.

To say it correctly you have to say Nair - ha not Nair - ka

Spanish pronunciation is not that difficult but unless you are a native speaker you will always sound like a "guirri"

(a "guirri" is the Spanish slang word for a foreigner. It is only very mildly offensive)

To learn Spanish pronunciation it is best to  have a look at a prounciation guide which has real sounds

There is one here.
« Last Edit: January 11, 2011, 03:30:45 AM by John »