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Languages > Portuguese
Most Popular Portuguese Language Product Types
Baby - Kindergarten
Good Night, Llittle Sea Otter in Portuguese & English PB
Portuguese New Testament, Almeda Versao Atualizada Version (16 Cassette) Bible
Children's Books
Wheels on the Bus in Portuguese & English (Board Book)
Intensive - FSI Portuguese Level 1 (15 Audio CDs)
Word to Word Portuguese / English Dictionary (Paperback)
Handheld Dictionary
Langenscheidt - Eurotranslator III West
Keyboard for Portuguese - EU Portugal layout - USB Keyboard
Keyboard Stickers
Keyboard Stickers for Portuguese (Brazilian) Blue Letters
Talk More! Portuguese
Microsoft Windows
Portuguese Windows '98 Full
Memories of Prison (Memorias de la Carcel)
Software - Windows
Multilingual Family Tree CD-ROM
Word Processing
Press International Multilanguage DTP
Word to Word Dictionary
Word to Word Portuguese / Englsh Dictionary by Vilsaint
All Portuguese language product types

Language Information

Portuguese is the national language of both Portugal and Brazil. With about 10 million speakers in the former and some 160 million in the latter, coupled with speakers in Portuguese colonies in Africa, in the Atlantic, and in Asia, its total number of speakers is over 170 million. in northwesternmost Spain about 3 million people speak a dialect of Portuguese known as Galician.

Portuguese is a Romance language, closely related to, and yet distinctly different from, Spanish. It is softer and less emphatic than Spanish, with a greater variety of vowel sounds, and contains a number of nasal sounds that are completely unknown in Spanish. Words beginning with h in Spanish frequently begin with f in Portuguese (e.g., hijo/filho—son), while words ending in -ción in Spanish generally end in -ção in Portuguese (nación/naऑã—nation). There are a number of words from Arabic in both languages (algodón/algodão—cotton) plus a few peculiar to Portuguese (alfaiate—tailor). Many words are identical in the two languages (mesa—table, flor—flower, lago—lake), but others are completely different (perro/cão—dog, gracias/obrigado—thank you).

The Portuguese of Brazil is slower and more measured than that of Portugal, but the Brazilians and Portuguese communicate with each other without the slightest difficulty. As in British and American English there are occasional differences in vocabulary. The word for "boy" is rapaz in Portugal but moço in Brazil; "girl" is rapariga in Portugal and moça in Brazil. Some Brazilian words are of Indian origin (e.g., abacaxi—pineapp{e).

The Portuguese nasal vowels are indicated by the letters ã and õ . The ç functions as in French, while the combinations lh and nh correspond to the Spanish ll and ñ respectively. The letter j is pronounced as in French (not as in Spanish), as is the letter g before e and i. The h is always silent. Words ending in a (but not ã), e, o, m, or s generally stress the next to last syllable, while those ending in other letters stress the final syllable. Exceptions to this rule are indicated by an acute accent if the vowel has an open sound (açúcar—sugar), and by a circumflex if the vowel has a closed sound (relâmpago— lightning). The accent marks are also used to distinguish between words that would otherwise have the same spelling, as for example e, meaning "and," but é, meaning "is," and por, meaning "by," but pôr, meaning "to put."

Portuguese is spoken/used in the following countries:
Angola, Azores (Portugal), Brazil, Canada, Cape Verde (Republic of), Guinea Bissau, Macao (Portuguese), Mozambique, Portugal, Sao Tome & Principe, United States of America.

Language Family
Family: Indo-Eurpean
Subgroup: Romance

Copyright © Kenneth Katzner, The Languages of the World, Published by Routledge.

Writing Sample

Writing Sample


He spoke modestly of himself. He admitted that he was a mere zero amongst the comsummate stylists, the subline orators and illustrious parliamentarians who swarmed in their capital. In pronouncing the word "zero" he formed an "0" with his index and thumb, raising his hand before him. He proclaimed his love for his country: and said that if its institutions or the Royal Family should ever have need of them—his body, his talent, his pen, and his modest fortune in savings, would all be at their disposal. He would love to pour out his last drop of blood for the throne.


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