How many words end with “jota” in Spanish?

Spanish is one of the most spoken languages of the world. Specifically, it is the second mother tongue by number of speakers, only behind Mandarin Chinese. And being a living language, it never stops evolving. For this reason, Spanish has a great variety of vocabulary, with more than 93,000 words registered in the dictionary. And increasing. Because every year, the Royal Academy of Language updates and includes new terms like 'zasca' or 'emoji', for example.

For this reason, in our language we can find countless unique words. That they have certain peculiarities that make them special. Like, for example, the word 'aristocratic', in which all its letters are repeated twice; or 'guineoecuatorial', which is the only word in Spanish that repeats each of the five vowels twice and that – in addition – does not repeat any consonant.

One of the most unknown peculiarities of our language is the scarce presence of words ending with the letter “jota”. It is not a unique characteristic of Spanish, but it does occur in a special way. One of the reasons why there are so few words that end in 'jota' in our language is that this letter has a guttural sound, produced in the back of the throat, which can be complicated to pronounce for Spanish speakers when it is placed at the end of a word.

Dictionary of the Spanish language / RAEthe reason

How many words end with “jota”?

The truth is there is some debate around how many words end in “jota” in Spanish. Some say 3, others 20 and others maintain that there are many more. However, it is not necessary to enter into conjectures or assumptions, because we have at our disposal the most authoritative and reliable source, which is the Dictionary of the Royal Spanish Academy. According to this dictionary, there are a total of nineteen words that end with 'jota':

  • Aj (or aje): Term that means ailment.
  • Alioj: Coming from the Arabic 'alioh', it refers to marble.
  • Almofrej: Arabic word. It is a cover used to transport beds during trips.
  • Almoraduj: Arabic name for sandalwood, an aromatic plant that we know here as marjoram.
  • Balaj: A term for the purple colored ruby.
  • Boxwood: A shrub from the Buxaceae family, from the Latin 'buxus'.
  • Borraj: From the Persian 'bore', it refers to borax, a white substance used in pharmacy and industry.
  • Cambuja: It is used to refer to a mask or eye mask.
  • Quiver: From the Greek 'karkásion', it is a portable box for arrows.
  • Chuj: It refers to a person from an Amerindian town of the Mayan family of Guatemala.
  • I said: An ornament that was hung around the neck or waist of children.
  • Erraj: A term for the cisco made from the pit of the olive after being pressed in the mill.
  • Itzaj: Similar to Chuj, it refers to a person from an Amerindian village of the Mayan family of Guatemala.
  • Maniblaj: A servant of an inn, of German origin.
  • Pedicoj: A jump taken with one foot alone is a contraction of 'foot' and 'lame'.
  • Relej: It refers to a roll or lane, a line that runs parallel to an edge.
  • Clock: Instrument used to measure time.
  • Sikh: From the Sanskrit 'sikh', it is belonging to or relating to Sikhism.
  • Troy: A space limited by partitions, to store fruits and especially cereals.

It is important to note that, of the nineteen words ending in jota that we have listed, only three are used in current Spanish more or less frequently: clock, box and quiver. The remaining sixteen words, although they are an integral part of Spanish, have their origin in various languages ​​and over time were incorporated into the lexicon of the Spanish language, but they have not become part of the vocabulary of the modern Spanish speakers.