Galician and Brazilian Portuguese are partially mutually intelligible, but there are also differences that can hinder full comprehension between the two languages:
- Galician originated as a Romance language derived from Latin that is closely related to Portuguese. It shares many lexical, grammatical and phonological features with Portuguese.
- Brazilian Portuguese developed differently than European Portuguese due to geographic isolation and influence from indigenous languages. However, its core vocabulary and structure remained similar to Portuguese.
- Speakers of Galician and Brazilian Portuguese can often understand written texts in the other language without prior study, especially if topics are familiar. Comprehension of spoken language varies more widely.
- Lexical similarity is high, with up to 80-90% of Galician and Brazilian Portuguese vocabularies being cognates. However, Brazilian Portuguese has incorporated more words from indigenous languages.
- Pronunciation differs significantly between the two. Galician phonology preserves characteristics of Portuguese before 17-1800s, while Brazilian Portuguese adapted new sounds.
- Grammar is largely congruent, but Galician maintains some extra conjugations and pluralization rules not present in Brazilian Portuguese.
- Idioms, slang terms and regional vocabulary not shared between Portugal/Galicia and Brazil can impair communication.
So in conclusion, while mutual intelligibility exists at a basic level, full comprehension between Galician and Brazilian Portuguese speakers requires effort due to pronunciation disparities and language change over time separating the regions. Prior study aids the process enormously.