The Latin u
in Latin, the "u" has the sound of the Portuguese "u", but I have noticed here that it is pronounced more like an "ô" , (urbe was pronounced ôrbê.) Is this a mistake of course or a confusion on my part, due to my mother tongue being neolatin?
Not everyone's pronunciation will agree. Notice for instance that one of the speakers pronounces "s" between vowels as English "z", whereas the others do not. Keep in mind also that there are a few different ways/theories of Latin pronunciation.
If you are greatly concerned, I'd recommend finding a reputable Latin grammar in Portuguese and go by what it says. You might look on the Internet Archive, searching for
lingua latina souza and then search for the "creator" of the files that show up. You'll find many uploads, including several Latin grammars (etc.) in Portuguese. They are probably all fairly old, but you may find what you need. I do not speak Portuguese and cannot recommend one of them. Like anyone else I have my opinion as to how Latin should be pronounced, but wouldn't recommend anything w/o discussing what interests you about Latin.
Bluntly if you speak Latin with a Portuguese or Brazilian vowel system you'll at least sound coherent and credible in your pronunciation, whether accurate or not. Could you point to a Portuguese word on Wiktionary with audio so we can hear what you mean?
EDIT: I had a bit of a listen to a few words; sometimes u in Portuguese seems to be a longer 'oo' sound (similar to Latin ū maybe); but the Portuguese mulher sounds almost the same as mulier to my ear.
Yes, Portuguese "u" sounds like Latin "u", but I mean that I heard the pronunciation of the word "urbe" look like "orbe", with a closed "o", when I heard it here, and i'd like to know if this always happens or is a particularity of the speaker in question
First of all, Latin didn't use the letter U. And second, yes, the short u sounds similar to the long o. But that also depends on the system of reconstructed pronunciation. According to the one Duolingo uses, which is the most popular, the short u sounds like the double o in look, whereas the long o sounds like the o in score in British English and it is pronounced for little bit longer hence its name. If you don't want to bother with this, you can always learn the Calabrese system of reconstructed pronunciation, which is the one I prefer. Edit: I noticed you wrote ôrbê. That's not correct. You are probably using the singular ablative case of urbs which ends with a short and more open é as in 'pé'.
First of all, Latin didn't use the letter U.
That's very misleading. There was always a u-sound in Latin. When the Romans wrote in Capital letters, in inscriptions and the like, the letter 'V' stood for both u and v, which is basically the same sound. When they wrote in cursive, they would write 'u' which, again stood for both u and v. Today, most texts separate the two letters in both caps and small type, but there are books and text editions that use only 'V' in capitals, and only 'u' in small type.
I never said that Latin didn't have the u-sound. I think I was being quite explicit when I said 'the letter U'. I was not referring to the sound.
If you read my entire comment....
Latin always had the letter 'u'. They just wrote it as V in capitals, but they also had cursive systems for handwriting, in which 'u' would look more or less as it does today.
More on Roman cursive script here, if anyone's interested: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roman_cursive
I'm not disagreeing with you. I'm just saying that the second sentence of your first comment is not what I said. Edit: nice u'v got it