How's the pronunciation of V in latin? Like a W or the Spanish, Italian and English V pronunciation?

I'm new to Latin and I'd like to know what's the correct pronunciation of the letter V. For example, should I pronounce the word Vir as "wir" or "vir"?

August 31, 2019


Always as 'w'.

Or think of it as a short u-sound. Like the Romans did. They didn't even have separate letters for u and v.

'Uvula' for instance, would, in typical upper-case inscription style be written as


August 31, 2019
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Also a beginner here. It seems that VVVLA would be a lot easier to pronounce if the middle V was spoken like an English V. To my ears, pronouncing the v as a w seems odd, as there is a v sound in most (all?) Romance languages. Is this pronunciation an American thing?

September 19, 2019

It's well attested. Here's a set of references on Stack Exchange

You'll see evidence includes transliterations of Latin in Ancient Greek, and puns by Cicero.

September 19, 2019

It does depend on preference. Later Latin, or even Latin that sounded rustic to Cicero, would have used a "v" sound. So it depends really, how you want to sound, and quite a lot of continental Europeans who otherwise use the classical system use "v", not least because "w" is harder if you are German, Dutch, Italian, French or Spanish …

August 31, 2019

It's just an approximation, but I often picture it like in the French oui.

August 31, 2019


August 31, 2019

In Church Latin? /v/. In classical pronunciation? /w/.

September 3, 2019
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