Spanish Diphthongs and Triphthongs  

Spanish Alphabet Pronunciation Spanish Diphthongs and Triphthongs

A Spanish diphthong is two vowels blended together to produce one sound. The different vowel combinations create a slurring of the two vowels. When “u” combines with another vowel, a “w” sound is produced (cuerpo) which would sound as KWERPO with the “u” and “e” blended to create a dipthong sound.

The "i” followed by another vowel, produces a consonant “y” sound as in “year” (hielo, siete). The “ai” or “ay” combination is pronounced like the word “eye” (hay). The diphthong list below provides many diphthong examples with audio files so that you can hear the correct pronunciation of each Spanish diphthong.

Diphthong: ai (ay)
aire - air
baile - dance
hay - there is or there are
paisajes - landscapings
faisán - pheasant
traigo - I bring

Diphthong: ei (ey)
seis - six
afeitarse - to shave
treinta - thirty
reina - queen
ley - law
pleito - lawsuit, fight

Diphthong: oi (oy)
hoy - today
estoy - I am
oigo - I hear
tiroides - thyroid
soy - I am
coincidencia - coincidence

Diphthong: ui (uy)
ruido - noise
cuidado - care
Luis - Louis
muy - very
Note: Neither of the verbs below are pronounced as dipthongs, the vowels “u” and “i” are clearly sounded separately.
influir - to influence
construir - to construct

Diphthong: au
autobiografía - autobiography
autor - author
pausa - pause
fauna - fauna
aunque - even though
bautismo - baptism

Diphthong: eu
amateur - amateur
neutral - neutral
Europa - Europe
neumonía - pneumonia
deuda - debt
neurótico - neurotic

Diphthong: ia
ancianos - elderly
media - half
estudiar - to study
esencia - essence
infancia - infancy
pronunciar - to pronounce

Diphthong: ie
viejo - old
cien - hundred
cielo - sky
siempre - always
viento - wind
tiempo - time or weather

Diphthong: io
sucio - dirty
precio - price
capitolio - capital
novios - bride and groom
misterio - mystery
delicioso - delicious

Diphthong: iu
ciudad - city
ciudadano - citizen
veintiuno - twenty-one
triunfo - triumph
viuda - widow
viudo - widower

Diphthong: ua
guante - glove
adecuado - adequate
cuatro - four
Ecuador - Ecuador
igual - equal
guapo - handsome

Diphthong: ue
bueno - good
jueves - Thursday
bisabuelo - great-grandpa
juego - game
muela - molar
fuerte - strong

Diphthong: uo
antiguo - old
ambiguo - ambiguous
fluorescente - fluorescent
fructuoso - fruitful
arduo - arduous
monstruo - monster

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