Same Sound (Homophones)

Homophones are those words that have the same sound in one language, like in English “flower” and “flour.”

Once you have a certain level of Spanish, knowing the homophones in Spanish with give you confidence. Another reason to know them is that is… fun? It is curious that two words that sound the same can have completely different meaning.

Homonyms are words with the same pronunciation (homophones) or the same spelling (homographs), but different meaning. An example of homographs would be the words “content” and “content,” well.. just “content,” one meaning “happy” and the other meaning “the inside of a container.”

When you see the list below, you may think, are they all? The list is nearly exhaustive (there may be some rare cases not included in the list), but this should not surprise you. Most homophones are short words: longer words don’t have so much chances to have a twin. Spanish words tend to be longer that the English ones, so the Spanish list of homophones should be shorter.

The following is a list of the most common homophones. Here they are grouped into types: type b/v are those homophones that distinguished from each other by the letters b and v. Notice that there are none listed under types “gu/w” and “c/k” since the letters “w” and “k” are rarely used in Spanish and there are no significant homophones with those letters.

Type # homophones translations
b/v 1. bienes vienes estate you come
b/v 2. botar votar to throw to vote
b/v 3. hierba hierva grass that it boils
h 4. ora hora s/he prays hour
b/v 5. sabia savia wise woman sap
b/v 6. tubo tuvo tube s/he had
h 7. a ha ¡ah! to, at s/he has ah!
h 8. ablando hablando softening talking
h 9. abría habría s/he opened s/he would have
h 10. as has ace you have
h 11. e he ¡eh! and I have hey!
h 12. hay ¡ay! there is/are ouch!
h 13. hecho echo done I throw
h 14. hola ola hello wave
s/c/z 15. Asia hacía Asia towards
s/c/z 16. cauce cause channel that s/he causes
s/c/z 17. cazar casar to hunt to marry
s/c/z 18. ceda seda that s/he gives in silk
s/c/z 19. coser cocer to sew to cook
s/c/z 20. seta zeta mushroom zed
s/c/z 21. vez ves time you see
y/ll 22. cayó calló s/he fell s/he fell
y/ll 23. haya halla that there is/are s/he finds
y/ll 24. vaya valla balla that s/he goes fence berry
g/j 25. agito ajito I shake little garlic

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