In Varietate Concordia

November 17, 2016

As those of you who use Forvo regularly will know, there are some words that can be pronounced in the same way as other words in other languages but have a completely different meaning. Think of gato (cat) in Spanish and gâteau (cake) in French, as just one of many examples.

With this in mind, and as part of the European City of Culture celebrations in San Sebastian, Basque artist Marga Berra Zubieta spent part of 2016 working on a project called 'In Varietate Concordia'.

In Varietate Concordia means "united in diversity" and is the motto of the European Union. It could also very well be the motto of Forvo which brings together speakers of at least  330 languages from all over the world, so we feel it's a project that's very close to our hearts.

After a series of workshops with linguists from a variety of countries, the words were brought to life in a book called Katu Katu & Co and on a set of billboards which were displayed on the streets of San Sebastian. To round the project off a website was created where people can listen to how the words are pronounced in the different languages. Forvo was of course delighted to be able to provide the pronunciations to which all our fantastic community has contributed.

You can find out more about the project and listen to the pronunciations on the following site:

Photo: © Iñigo Ibañez