Photo Courtesy of MorgueFile.

Quick Facts


Total Worldwide Speakers: 177,981,570


Language Family: Indo-European


Spoken in:
Portugal, Andorra, Angola, Antigua and Barbuda, Belgium, Bermuda, Brazil, Canada, Cape Verde Islands, China, Congo, East Timor, France, Germany, Guinea-Bissau, Guyana, India, Indonesia (Nusa Tenggara), Jamaica, Luxembourg, Malawi, Mozambique, Netherlands Antilles, Oman, Paraguay, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, São Tomé e Príncipe, Senegal, South Africa, Spain, Suriname, Switzerland, United Kingdom, United States, Uruguay, Venezuela, Zambia



 Portuguese is a descendent of Latin, which was brought to the Iberian Peninsula by Roman soldiers, settlers and merchants from 218 BC. The earliest records of a distinctly Portuguese language appear in administrative documents dating from the 9th century AD. In 1290 King Denis decreed that Portuguese, then simply called the "Vulgar language" should be known as the Portuguese language and should be officially used.

A reformed Portuguese orthography (nova ortografia), in which words were spelled more in accordance with their pronunciation, was adopted is Portugal in 1916. A slightly modified form was adopted in Brazil in 1943 and revised in 1970. A new orthography which aims to unify the written Portuguese of all the lusophone countries was adopted in Brazil in 2009. Dates have yet to be set for its adoption in the other Portuguese-speaking countries



Sources: The Ethnologue & Omniglot


Abraham's Valley

Audio Tracks Portuguese
Subtitles English
Running Time 187 min
Rating Not Rated

The House of Sand

Audio Tracks Portuguese
Subtitles English, French, & Portuguese
Running Time 115 min
Rating R

The Other Side of the Street

Audio Tracks Portuguese
Subtitles English
Running Time 98 min
Rating Not Rated

Waste Land

Audio Tracks Portuguese, English
Subtitles Portuguese, English
Running Time 118 min
Rating PG-13


One-Day Portuguese

Going on vacation or studying abroad? Need to learn a few basic phrases to get you by? The One-Day language learning program will help you do just that. Quickly learn the necessary words and phrases that will help you while abroad. The audio CD comes with a booklet to help users visually recognize words and phrases if desired.

Rosetta Stone - Portuguese Level 1 & 2

One of the leaders in language learning software, Rosetta Stone allows you to learn a new language almost effortlessly. The interactive software helps you learn through imersion rather than repetitive memorization. Learn the essential structure needed to help you develop a foundation in the language. Rosetta Stone Software cannot be checked out and is for in-lab use only.

Web-Based Resources

Web-Based Software

Mango Languages LogoMango Languages is available free to all Saint Michael's students, faculty, and staff in a number of languages. Each Mango lesson is focused on practical, common conversation skills and includes instruction on vocabulary, pronunciation, grammar, and culture.

For assistance with Mango, please see the Getting Started with Mango Languages guide.


Web-Based Links

BBC Languages — Portuguese

BBC Language is an online base language learning software that offers resources for Chinese, Spanish, French, English, and many more languages. Learn the basics of 36 different languages and the culture as well!

Easy Portuguese

Learn to read, write, and speak Portuguese online. Audio lessons include basic vocabulary, important phrases, and more. Grammatical lessons and sentence construction at the beginner and advanced levels.

Global Road Warrior

Use this database to get acclimated to a country's business culture and etiquette (greetings & courtesies, ethics, meetings, attire), society and culture (gift giving, food, media, time & punctuality) and travel tips (money & banking, transportation, and more) for 175 countries.