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The San Juan Bautista Comaltepec
Zapotec Alphabet

This page gives a simple explanation of the alphabet used in SIL publications in Choapan Zapotec.

Explanation of the alphabet

Most of the letters used to write this Zapotec language are similar to those used to write Spanish, but there are also six other letters that are necessary to represent all the sounds in Zapotec.

Letters that are different from Spanish:

ë mariposa (butterfly)
z̃e grande (big)
x xopa seis (six)

Letter combinations:

dy dyila comal (griddle)
dz dzen humo (smoke)


' bao' carbón (charcoal)

Note how the following words are written, in order to distinguish them from others which are written with the same consonants and vowels.

biu' mes, luna
(month, moon)
biu gallina