REGLAS DE ACENTUACIÓN EN ESPAÑOL

RULES OF ACCENTUATION IN SPANISH

 

All words in Spanish have a stress, an emphasis on one syllable as opposed to the others. When words follow the rules of accentuation graphic symbols of the stress ( á, é, í, ó, ú) are not needed but if a word does not follow these rules then you would need these graphic symbols to show where the stress is placed.

These are the rules of accentuation:

REGLA Nº 1:Normally, all words which end in N, S or a VOWEL have the stress on the second syllable starting from the end. These words belong to a category known as palabras llanas o graves.

Ejemplos: hermano cantaban señores camino

REGLA Nº 2: All words which end in a CONSONANT except N or S have the stress on the last syllable of the word. These words belong to a category known as palabras agudas.

Ejemplos: papel pared escribir directriz

REGLA Nº 3: If the words do not follow these basic rules they have a graphic symbol known as tilde which is placed on the vowel of the syllable carrying the stress.

Ejemplos: montón ángel laba
  ca piz ánimo

(the words in the last column carry the stress on the third syllable starting from the end and they are known as palabras esdrújulas).

 

OTHER USEFUL THINGS TO KNOW ABOUT ACCENTUATION

-Some words have a tilde (graphic symbol) to distinguish them from other words which are written the same but have different meanings.

Ejemplos: el (article "the") él (pers.pronoun "he")
  mi (poss. adj. "my") mí (pers.pron. "me")
  si (conjunction "if") sí ("yes")

- All interrogative and exclammative pronouns and words have tilde.

Ejemplos: ¿cómo? ¿cuándo? ¿qué? ¿quién?

- In a stressed syllable with a diphthong (the union of two vowels, one strong <a, e, o> one weak <i, u> forming one syllable) the stress is normally placed on the strong vowel but if the stress is on the weak vowel then the diphthong is destroyed and it has a tilde.

Ejemplos: frío reúne había

-Monosyllabic words do not have a tilde unless they could be mistaken for another word

 

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