Basque is a romance language spoken in the northern central area of Spain. Basque is mostly spoken by the Basque people, an ethnic group found in Spain and France. Basque is a very unique language that uses the Latin Roman alphabet and letters are pronounced like they would be in Spanish. About 650,000 people speak it as a first language and there are about 100,000 speakers in the French Atlantic Pyrenees. If you are interested in learning Basque, here are some websites to help you do so.
- Basque 101 - http://www.101languages.net/basque/
This website provides an overview of Basque as well as useful translations from English to Basque. This site offers translations of common words and phrases, numbers, time, colors, transportation, eating, shopping, etc. Along with language lessons, the site contains helpful information on Basque history, grammar, geography, classification, and more to help you expand your Basque knowledge.
- My Languages - http://mylanguages.org/learn_basque.php
This link provides a number of resources to help you learn Basque. My Languages offers lessons and lists on the Basque alphabet, grammar, vocabulary, phrases, readings, and much more. The site also has resourceful tools such as a Basque dictionary, transliteration maker, Basque radio, keyboard, audio lessons, and quizzes.
Galician is an Indo-European, romance language spoken by 4 million people in Galicia, a region in northwest Spain. Galician is in the same family of languages as Portuguese and both languages share common origins. Galician has strong similarities to Portuguese in vocabulary and syntax. For the native Galician speaker, Portuguese is about 85 percent understandable. If you are interested in visiting or living in Galicia or learning Galician and Portuguese, here are a couple of websites to teach you the basics.
- iLanguages - http://ilanguages.org/galician.php
This site provides Galician lessons teaching vocabulary, phrases, and grammar. The lists of English to Galician translations also conveniently provide an audio option to allow you to hear pronunciations of words and phrases. iLanguages also offers a language quiz to help test your knowledge.
- Learn Galician - http://learn101.org/galician.php
This website takes a step-by-step approach to learning Galician by providing lessons in the alphabet, grammar, common phrases, vocabulary and more. The lessons also include free audio to allow you to listen to Galician pronunciations. The site also offers an exam to help you test your knowledge.
Catalan is a romance language spoken in Spain. About 5 to 6 million people speak Catalan as their first language. Catalan is the national language of Andorra, a European country between Spain and France. It is also spoken in France, Sardinia in Italy, and areas of Aragon and Murcia in Spain. Though Catalan’s written form looks like a cross between Spanish and French, many say the language is similar to Italian. Catalan’s alphabet has shown to be similar to English as well. If you are looking to live or visit a place where Catalan is predominantly spoken, here are a few websites to help you in learning the language.
- Surface Languages Catalan - http://www.surfacelanguages.com/language/Catalan
This link provides numerous lists teaching essential Catalan phrases and vocabulary. Lessons include a first few words, small talk conversation, buying things, food and drink, getting around, places and buildings, somewhere to stay, and more. Each lesson provides English to Catalan translations, audio for the words and phrases, flashcards, and related word games.
- Catalan 101 - http://www.101languages.net/catalan/
This website provides the information necessary to learn Catalan by giving lessons teaching Catalan pronunciation, phrases, and vocabulary. The site also provides video lessons such as one teaching how to pronounce Catalan consonants and related examples. Along with language lessons, 101 languages provide useful information such as an overview of Catalan, history, dialects, geography, and travel guides to where Catalan is spoken.
Castilian, more commonly known as Spanish, is the official and cultural language of nearly 350 million people. About 414 million people world-wide speak Spanish as a native language. Castilian is the official language of Spain and their constitution states that all Spaniards have the duty to know it and the right to use it. Spanish is spoken in many countries that were former colonies of Spain such as countries in Central and South America, Equatorial Guinea and Western Sahara in Africa, and areas in the Philippines. Due to its many immigrated speakers, Spanish has also become exceedingly prevalent in the United States. Due to the number of speakers and growing popularity of Spanish, it would be useful to know the basics of Spanish. If you are looking to learn Spanish free online, here are a couple of websites that could help you out.
- BBC - http://www.bbc.co.uk/languages/spanish/
BBC has a multitude of resources to help you learn Spanish. The site provides interesting pages such as a guide to Spanish, Spanish phrases, Football Spanish, and Spanish news, TV, and radio. BBC also offers Spanish lessons in vocabulary, grammar, and pronunciation. Along with fun games such as audio crossword puzzles, BBC posts free interactive learning video dramas to help you learn Spanish in a different way.
- Study Spanish - http://www.studyspanish.com/
This website contains the information necessary to learn Spanish. Lesson topics include pronunciation, grammar, vocabulary, verb drills, and features and resources. The English to Spanish lessons are offered at the beginner, intermediate, and advanced levels. Vocabulary contains flashcards and helpful audio to help you practice how words and phrases are pronounced.
- SpanishDict YouTube - https://www.youtube.com/user/SpanishDict
This YouTube channel provides multiple video lessons teaching Spanish. Lessons covered include greetings, introductions, grammar, phrases, vocabulary, and more. There are many different volumes of video series including videos that show a pronunciation guide for common Spanish words and months. The English to Spanish lessons on these videos from multiple teachers are very detailed, clear, and well-explained.
Photo Credit: Chris Bastian