Modern Standard Portuguese (português padrão) is based on the Portuguese spoken in the area including and surrounding the city of Coimbra, in Central Portugal. Standard Portuguese is also the preferred standard by the Portuguese-speaking African countries, as such and despite the fact that its speakers are dispersed around the world, Portuguese has only two dialects used for learning: the European and the Brazilian. Some aspects and sounds found in dialects in Brazil are exclusive to South America, and cannot be found in Europe. However, the Santomean Portuguese in Africa may be confused with a Brazilian accent. Some aspects link some Brazilian accents with the ones spoken in Africa, such as the pronunciation of “menino”, which is pronounced as [mininu] compared to [meninu] in Standard Portuguese. Dialects from inland Northern Portugal have significant similarities with Galician.

Audio samples of some dialects and accents of Portuguese are available below. There are some differences between the areas but these are the best approximations possible. IPA transcriptions refer to the names in local pronounce.

th ce�] yi�$np�neloped into a lingua franca in Asia and Africa, its use was not only for colonial administration and trade, but also for communication between local officials and Europeans of all nationalities. Its extend was helped by mixed marriages between Portuguese and local people, and by its connection with Roman Catholic missionary efforts, which led to the structure of a Creole called cristão (“Christian”) in several parts of Asia and until the 19th century the languages continued to be popular. Some Portuguese-speaking Christian communities in India, Sri Lanka, Malaysia, and Indonesia conserved their language even after they were separated from Portugal. The language has mainly changed in these communities and has developed through the centuries into numerous Portuguese creoles; some still exist today, after hundreds of years in separation. Also, a significant number of words of Portuguese source are established in Tetum. Portuguese words introduced the lexicons of many other languages, such as Japanese, Indonesian, Malay, or Swahili.

In 1516, the end of “Old Portuguese” was marked by the publication of the Cancioneiro Geral de Garcia de Resende. The period of “Modern Portuguese” (from the 16th century to the present) saw an enlarge in the number of words of Classical Latin origin and erudite words of Greek origin borrowed into Portuguese during the Renaissance, which increased the complexity of the language.

 


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