An original letter in Haketia from Tangier, written in 1832.
The well-known form of Ladino, as formerly spoken by Jews living in the Balkans, Greece, Turkey and Jerusalem, is "Ladino Oriental" (eastern Ladino). Haketia may be described by contrast as "Ladino Occidental". The language is a variety of Spanish that borrows heavily from Judeo-Moroccan Arabic. It evidently also contains a number of words of Hebrew origin and was originally written using Hebrew letters. There is some cultural resemblance between the two Judaeo-Spanish dialect communities, including a rich shared stock of Romanzas (ballads) from medieval Spain, though both words and music often differ in detail (as indeed they do between one Oriental-Sephardic community and another).
The name "Haketia" derived from the Arabic ħaka حكى, "tell", and is therefore pronounced with aspirated [h],[clarification needed] reflecting the Arabic guttural "ħa". In some places it is written "Jaquetía" with the same pronunciation.