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Native toSpain
RegionMurcia, Andalusia (Almería, partially in Jaén and Granada), Castile-La Mancha (Albacete) and Valencia (Vega Baja, Alicante)
Early forms
Spanish orthography (Latin script)
Official status
Official language in
Language codes
ISO 639-3
Dialecto murciano.png
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Murcian (endonym: murciano) is a variant of Peninsular Spanish, spoken mainly in the autonomous community of Murcia and the adjacent comarcas of Vega Baja del Segura and Alto Vinalopó in the province of Alicante (Valencia), the corridor of Almansa in Albacete (Castile-La Mancha). In a greater extent, it may also include some areas that were part of the former Kingdom of Murcia, such as southeastern Albacete (now part of Castile La Mancha) and parts of Jaén and Almería (now part of Andalusia).

The linguistic varieties of Murcian form a dialect continuum with Eastern Andalusian and Manchego Peninsular Spanish.

Murcian is considered a separate language of Spanish by some of its native speakers, who call it llengua murciana.[1][2] The term panocho is also used to designate the Murcian language, however it mostly refers to the variety spoken in the comarca of the Huerta de Murcia [es].


Murcian emerged from the mixture of several linguistic varieties that joined in the Kingdom of Murcia after the conquest of the Crown of Aragon and the Crown of Castile between 13th and 14th centuries. The linguistic varieties were mainly Tudmir's Romance (a type of Andalusi Romance), Arabic, Aragonese, Old Castilian and Occitano-Catalan. In modern times Murcian has also been influenced by French and Caló.

Phonetic features of Murcian

The Murcian dialectal features differ among areas, villages, social classes and individuals in accordance with the communicative situation in which they are involved, this is because of the influence of standard rule. This dialect has similarities and differences with Spanish, Aragonese and Catalan languages.


Historical postvocalic consonants in the syllable coda assimilate to both the place and the manner of articulation of the following consonant, producing a geminate. For instance, historical /pt/, /kt/ and /st/ all fall together as /tt/, rendering cacto 'cactus', casto 'chaste' and capto 'I understand' homophonous as [ˈkatto]. Historical /kst/ also joins this neutralization, rendering sexta 'sixth' (f.) homophonous with secta 'sect' as [ˈsetta]. Other historical postvocalic clusters affected by this include /sp, sd, sk, sɡ, sm, sn, sl/, in each case producing a geminated second element: [pp, dd, kk, ɡɡ, mm, nn, ll] (with [ðð] being an alternative to [dd]). This produces minimal pairs differentiated by consonant length, such as cisne [ˈθinne] 'swan' vs. cine [ˈθine] 'cinema'. This process also occurs across word boundaries, as in los nenes [lɔnˈnɛnɛ] 'the kids'.[3]

Word-final /n/ is realized as velar [ŋ].[4]

In older working-class rural speech, syllable-final /s/ surfaces as [ɾ] before word-initial consonants (particularly the voiced plosives and /n/), as in los vasos [lɔɾ ˈβæsɔ] 'the glasses'. /b, d, ɡ/ are lenited after this allophone. The replacement of [s] with [ɾ] is perceived as a very marked feature of rural Murcian, and it is disapproved of by the local population.[5]

Phonetic development

There are linguistic phenomena that are (or were) usual in other linguistic varieties (Aragonese, Mozarabic, Catalan, Andalusian, etc.):


Murcian Spanish vowel chart[6]
Murcian Spanish vowel chart[6]
Front Back
Close i u
Close-mid e o
Open-mid (ɛ) (ɔ)
Open (æ) a

The vowel system of Murcian Spanish is essentially the same of Eastern Andalusian.

The open-mid vowels [ɛ, ɔ] as well as the open front [æ] are realizations of /eC, oC, aC/ (where ⟨C⟩ stands for any consonant other than /n/) in the syllable coda. Due to vowel harmony, the close-mid [e, o] and the open central [ä] (hereafter transcribed without the diacritic) are banned from occurring in any syllable preceding that with [ɛ, ɔ, æ]. This change is sometimes[7] called vowel opening, but this is completely inaccurate for [a], which is not only more back than [æ] but also lower than it. Thus, the contrast between mañanas /maˈɲanas/ and the singular form mañana /maˈɲana/ 'morning' surfaces as a contrast of vowel quality: [mæˈɲænæ, maˈɲana], rather than the presence of terminal [s] in the former word.[6]

The close vowels have no contextual allophones, and they are consistently realized as close [i, u]. Thus, there is no difference between underlying /i, u/ and /is, us/ in most contexts, with both being realized as [i, u], without any trace of the final fricative in the latter case.[6]

See also


  1. ^ En difensa la llengua murciana. Llengua maere.
  2. ^ Llengua maere
  3. ^ Monroy & Hernández-Campoy (2015), pp. 231–232.
  4. ^ Monroy & Hernández-Campoy (2015), p. 233.
  5. ^ Monroy & Hernández-Campoy (2015), p. 232.
  6. ^ a b c " - LA PLANA E LA LLENGUA MURCIANA". Retrieved 16 June 2017.
  7. ^ E.g. by Monroy & Hernández-Campoy (2015:233)


  • Alberto Sevilla. Vocabulario Murciano
  • García Soriano. Vocabulario del Dialecto Murciano
  • García Cotorruelo-Emilia. Estudio sobre el habla de Cartagena y su comarca.
  • Molina Fernández, Patricio. Parablero Murciano.
  • Muñoz Cortés-Manuel. El habla de la Huerta.
  • Aguilar Gil, Pedro. Raíces, habla y costumbres de los huertanos. A.A.V.V. Torrealta. Molina. 1999.
  • Álvar López, Manuel. Estudios sobre las hablas meridionales. Universidad de Granada. Granada. 2004.
  • Álvar López, Manuel. Las hablas meridionales de España y su interés para la lingüística comparada. Atlas Lingüístico de Andalucía, Tomo 1, nº. 2. Universidad de Granada. Granada. 1956.
  • Díez de Revenga, Francisco Javier y De Paco, Mariano. Historia de la literatura murciana. Editora Regional. Murcia. 1989.
  • Ibarra Lario, Antonia. Materiales para el conocimiento del habla de Lorca y su comarca. Universidad de Murcia. Murcia. 1996.
  • Monroy, Rafael; Hernández-Campoy, Juan Manuel (2015), "Murcian Spanish" (PDF), Journal of the International Phonetic Association, 45 (2): 229–240, doi:10.1017/S0025100314000231