Most of the time, we use the word nada in Spanish as an indefinite pronoun that can be translated as either "nothing" or "anything." In this lesson, we will examine how to use this word to mean one vs. the other. Let's take a look.
Before we jump into the "nothing" vs. "anything" uses of nada, it's important to state the following: When an adjective appears next to nada, the adjective must be masculine. Let's look at a few examples:
No es nada malo, es algo natural.
It's nothing bad, it's something natural.
Caption 12, La Cocaleros Personas y políticas - Part 1Play Caption
Tenemos que devolver a la madre y esperamos que la madre no encuentre nada raro en su cachorro.
We have to return it to the mother and hope that the mother doesn't find anything strange with her cub.Play Caption
Que haya jóvenes que realicen pequeños hurtos no es nada nuevo.
That there are young people who commit petty thefts is nothing new.Play Caption
If nada comes after a verb, it must be expressed in a negative form with either no or some other negative element such as jamás/nunca (never) or nadie (nobody). Although such "double negatives" are incorrect in English (for example, you can't say "I don't have nothing"), in such cases in Spanish, nada becomes the positive "anything" in the English translation. Let's look at a couple of examples:
Juan no ha comido nada desde que llegó al aeropuerto.
Juan hasn't eaten anything since he arrived at the airport.Play Caption
No, no como nada frito.
No, I don't eat anything fried.
Caption 40, Cata y Cleer En el restaurantePlay Caption
In the example above, you can see how the adjective frito is masculine (just to check whether you remember our aforementioned rule!).
me encanta también cocinar. Nunca me has hecho nada, ni un plato.
I also love to cook. You have never made anything for me, not even one dish.
Captions 74-75, Cleer HobbiesPlay Caption
On the other hand, if nada goes before a verb, the verb does not need to be accompanied by a negative element. In this case, nada functions like the word "nothing" in English. Let's take a look:
Mi primo vive en una casucha en donde nada funciona bien.
My cousin lives in a "casucha" [awful house] where nothing works well.Play Caption
Nada me detendrá
Nothing will stop me
Caption 32, Ednita Nazario Después De TiPlay Caption
Finally, keep in mind that when nada is used as a noun meaning "the void" or "nothingness," it is a feminine noun:
Era el frío de la nada
It was the cold of nothingnessPlay Caption
Notice how in this case, the word nada is preceded by the definite female article "la."
That's all for this lesson. We invite you to keep these rules in mind, and don't forget to send us your suggestions and comments.
In this lesson, we will learn how to describe people in Spanish using the verb ser (to be). In particular, we'll focus on five different uses of the verb ser that you can use to identify and describe people. Let's take a look.
Eh... Luis, ella es mi mamá, mamá, él es Luis. Y ella es mi abuela Carmen.
Um... Luis, this is my mom, Mom, this is Luis. And this is my Grandma Carmen.
Captions 18-19, Los Años Maravillosos Capítulo 4 - Part 4Play Caption
It's worth mentioning that the example above shows a very common way to introduce people in Spanish.
es un hombre que se dedica a lo que yo hago.
he's a man who devotes himself to what I do.Play Caption
Paul es estadounidense, de los Estados Unidos.
Paul is American, from the United States.
Caption 16, Carlos explica Geografía y gentiliciosPlay Caption
Mi padre es arquitecto
My father is an architect
Caption 25, Leif El Arquitecto Español y su Arte - Part 1Play Caption
In particular, when we refer to essential traits, such as height, weight, and physical appearance.
Es bajo, es gordo,
He's short, he's fat,
Caption 33, El Aula Azul Mis PrimosPlay Caption
Alguien que es delgado tiene poco peso
Someone who is skinny doesn't weigh muchPlay Caption
Carolina tiene treinta y cinco años pero parece que tiene veinte. Es muy guapa.
Carolina is thirty-five years old but she looks like she is twenty. She's very pretty.
Captions 2-4, El Aula Azul Mis PrimosPlay Caption
Ellos son muy majos. Mi prima Marta es muy simpática.
They are very nice. My cousin Marta is very nice.
Caption 8, El Aula Azul Mi familiaPlay Caption
Ricardo es muy... es muy tranquilo, ¿viste?
Ricardo is very... he's very calm, you know?
Caption 84, Biografía Natalia Oreiro - Part 10Play Caption
Porque mi mamá es una persona muy difícil. -Eso a mí no me importa.
Because my mom is a very difficult person. -That doesn't matter to me.
Caption 20, Yago 10 Enfrentamientos - Part 4Play Caption
That's it for today. Can you describe someone you know using the verb ser? We invite you to try it out and don't forget to send us your comments and suggestions. ¡Hasta la próxima!
Generally speaking, we use the present indicative in Spanish to talk about actions that are taking place at the moment (now). However, that's not the only use of it. Let's take a look at the following list so you can understand how to use the present indicative in Spanish.
Actions that are taking place right at the moment (now):
¿Dónde están las chicas? ¿Las chicas? -Ajá. Lola y Ana. -Uh... Lola y Ana viven aquí.
Where are the girls? The girls? -Uh-huh. Lola and Ana. -Uh... Lola and Ana live here.
Captions 26-29, Extr@: Extra en español Ep. 1 - La llegada de Sam - Part 4Play Caption
In the above sentence, you can see how the verbs estar (to be) and vivir (to live) are conjugated in the present indicative for the third person plural (las chicas/Lola y Ana/ellas... están/viven).
You can also talk about actions that take place over time:
Trabajo en un colegio. Soy maestra de música y de ciencias.
I work at a school. I'm a music and science teacher.
Captions 6-7, Ariana Mi CasaPlay Caption
In this example, you can see the verbs trabajar (to work) and ser (to be) conjugated in the present indicative for the first person singular (yo trabajo/soy).
IMPORTANT! Remember that in Spanish it is very common to drop the pronouns from the sentences. As you can see in the sentence above, Ariana doesn't say "yo trabajo" but rather only "trabajo".
En agosto, vamos a la playa. En septiembre, empieza el otoño.
In August, we go to the beach. In September, the fall begins.
Captions 21-22, El Aula Azul Estaciones y MesesPlay Caption
In the example above, we can see the present indicative of the verb ir (to go) in the first person plural (nosotros vamos) and the present indicative of the verb empezar (to begin) in the third person singular (el otoño empieza).
La Laguna de San Pablo está a los pies del imponente Volcán Imbabura.
The San Pablo Lagoon is at the foot of the imposing Imbabura Volcano.
Caption 13, Otavalo Un día en la ciudad de los lagosPlay Caption
In the example above, Natalia uses the present indicative of the verb estar for the third person singular (está) to state a fact.
You can talk about daily activities and habitual actions using the present indicative:
De lunes a viernes, me levanto a las siete de la mañana.
From Monday to Friday, I get up at seven in the morning.
Caption 2, GoSpanish La rutina diaria de SolPlay Caption
In the above clip, you can see how Sol uses the present indicative of the verb levantarse (yo me levanto) to express one of her habitual actions.
Dante y Mika vienen todos los días a trabajar conmigo aquí al Refugio del Burrito,
Dante and Mika come work with me every day here at the Little Donkey Shelter,
Caption 62, Rosa La perrita MikaPlay Caption
Similarly, Rosa uses the present indicative of the verb venir (to come) to describe something habitual. In this case, the verb is conjugated in the third person plural (Dante y Mika/ellos... vienen).
Did you know that the present indicative can be used for things happening in the near future? Let's see some examples.
Le prometo que termino de morfar y... y salgo a laburar. Va a ver.
I promise you that I'll finish eating and... and go out to work. You'll see.
Caption 63, Yago 8 Descubrimiento - Part 7Play Caption
In this sentence, the speaker is using the present indicative of the verb salir (to go out) in order to express an action that will take place in the near future. Once he's done with his lunch, he will go out to work. The verb is conjugated in the first person singular (yo salgo).
Bueno, pues entonces, no hay que pensarlo más. Mañana hablamos con el jefe y desde la oficina
OK, well then, we don't have to think about it anymore. Tomorrow we'll talk to the boss and from the office
Captions 11-12, Confidencial: El rey de la estafa Capítulo 2 - Part 6Play Caption
In the previous example, you can fully appreciate how the present indicative of the verb hablar (to talk) is used to indicate an action that will take place tomorrow! This may be a bit weird for English speakers but it is a very common formula used by Spanish speakers. The verb is conjugated in the second person plural (nosotros hablamos).
Finally, it is worth mention that in journalism and the academic field, some people like to use the present indicative when referring to historical facts. Let's see the following example:
El Imperio romano cae en el año 476
The Roman Empire falls in the year 476
And that's it for today. We hope this lesson helped you to understand how to use the present indicative in Spanish. And don't forget to send us your comments and questions.
Do you know how to say "those" or "that" in Spanish? Let's explore Spanish demonstrative adjectives. However, before doing that, let's start this lesson with an important definition.
Adjectives describe and modify nouns. We use demonstrative adjectives to determine which person or object, for example, we are referring to, taking its distance with respect to the speaker and/or listener into account. Let's first review our options in English:
- Near the speaker: "this" and "these."
- Near the listener OR far from both the speaker and the listener: "that" and "those."
While there are only four demonstrative adjectives in English, you will notice that there are many more in Spanish (twelve to be exact!). Why is that? One reason is that, because nouns in Spanish have a gender, demonstrative adjectives in Spanish are not only singular and plural but masculine and feminine as well.
In addition, Spanish has two different sets of demonstrative adjectives to differentiate between nouns that are close to the listener vs. nouns that are far from both the speaker and listener (roughly corresponding to the English concept of "over there" rather than just "there").
Let's take a closer look at the demonstrative adjectives in Spanish, using M to indicate "masculine" and F to indicate "feminine":
- Near the speaker: "this" (M: este, F: esta) and "these" (M: estos, F: estas).
- Near the listener: "that" (M: ese, F: esa) and "those" (M: esos, F: esas).
- Far from both the speaker and the listener: "that" (over there) (M: aquel, F: aquella) and "those" (over there) (M: aquellos, F: aquellas).
It is worth noting that, in addition to indicating further physical distance, aquel/aquella/aquellos/aquellas can also refer to metaphorical distance such as dates or events in the future or past.
Now that we know the demonstrative adjectives in Spanish, it's time to look at some examples. Let's watch and listen to the following clips:
Me gusta mucho este parque.
I really like this park.Play Caption
Esta mochila es de Lucas.
This backpack is Lucas'.Play Caption
En la noche, utilizaremos estos vasos bajos para servir licor.
At night, we'll use these short glasses to serve liquor.
Caption 20, Ana Carolina El comedorPlay Caption
Estas cintas son las que estamos sacando recientemente; son nuevos diseños.
These ribbons are the ones that we are coming out with recently; they are new designs.
Caption 19, Comercio Camisas tradicionalesPlay Caption
Oiga y ese carro, esa belleza ¿de dónde la sacó, hermano, ah?
Hey and that car, that beauty, where did you get it, brother, huh?Play Caption
¿Y esos otros tatuajes que tienes aquí, de qué son?
And those other tattoos you have here, what are they of?
Caption 67, Adícora - Venezuela El tatuaje de RosanaPlay Caption
Mire, Rubio, yo necesito que usted le ponga vigilancia inmediata a esas dos mujeres, hermano.
Look, Rubio, I need you to put those two women under immediate surveillance, brother.Play Caption
La terminación del piso sería, en el futuro, de roca... de roca rústrica [sic] a propósito traída de aquel cerro que está allá.
The last part of the floor would be, in the future, made out of rock... out of rustic rock brought specifically from that hill over there.
Captions 22-23, Edificio en Construcción Hablando con los trabajadores - Part 2Play Caption
Esas cifras ya nos dicen que aquellas civilizaciones prehistóricas ya sabían mucho de cálculo.
Those numbers tell us that those prehistoric civilizations already knew a lot about calculus.
Captions 27-29, Rosa Los dólmenes de AntequeraPlay Caption
sería, "Aquellos coches son de mi padre" o "Aquellas casas son de mi madre".
would be, "Those cars are my father's" or "Those houses are my mother's."
Captions 35-36, Lecciones con Carolina Adjetivos demostrativosPlay Caption
Keep in mind, however, that in less formal Spanish, we tend to use ese, esa, esos, and esas much more than aquel, aquella, aquellos, aquellas.
That's all for today. Although there are many more demonstrative adjectives in Spanish than in English, learning to use them is relatively simple. We hope you enjoyed this lesson, and don't forget to send us your comments and suggestions. ¡Hasta la próxima!
Are you familiar with the Spanish verb gustar (to like)? Have you ever been in a situation where you didn't know whether to use gusta or gustan when talking about something you like? If using gusta vs gustan is tricky for you, here are some simple rules to help you understand the difference between gusta and gustan.
Let's start with some good news. When you want to say that you like someone or something, the only thing you need to know is how to conjugate the verb gustar in the third person either in its singular (gusta) or plural (gustan) form. Let's take a look at a couple of simple sentences with gustar:
A mí me gusta el acento de las colombianas.
I like the Colombian women's accent.Play Caption
Sí, a mí me gustan las plantas y las flores y los árboles.
Yes, I like the plants and the flowers and the trees.
Captions 12-13, Conversaciones en el parque Cap. 5: Me gusta mucho este parque.Play Caption
That's it. You don't need anything else. Now, let's see when to use gusta or gustan.
The following simple rules will help you to master the gustan vs gusta battle.
Use the third person singular gusta for the following cases:
1. When the verb gustar is followed by a singular noun.
Me gusta la camisa.
I like the shirt.Play Caption
Keep in mind that most of the time you will need to place a definite article before the noun.
2. When the verb gustar is followed by a verb in the infinitive.
y me gusta llevar faldas normalmente, sobre todo en... en invierno.
and I like to wear skirts usually, especially in... in winter.
Captions 6-7, El Aula Azul Actividades DiariasPlay Caption
3. When the verb gustar is followed by several infinitive verbs.
A Pedro le gusta leer, tocar guitarra y hacer ejercicio.
Pedro likes to read, play guitar and exercise.
Use the third person plural gustan for the following cases:
1. When the verb gustar is followed by a plural noun.
A Lola le gustan los hombres fuertes
Lola likes strong menPlay Caption
2. When the verb gustar is followed by multiple, independent nouns.
Me gustan el diseño, la decoración y la arquitectura de esa casa.
I like the design, decoration, and architecture of that house.
When asking questions or stating negative sentences, you need to stick to the same rules we mentioned before. Let's look at a couple of examples:
¿Te gusta la ciencia?
Do you like science?
Caption 42, Los Años Maravillosos Capítulo 2 - Part 5Play Caption
A mí no me gusta tu camiseta.
I don't like your shirt.
Caption 12, Español para principiantes Los coloresPlay Caption
¿No te gustan las velas?
You don't like candles?
Caption 38, Muñeca Brava 7 El poema - Part 11Play Caption
That's it for today. But before we leave you, we invite you to answer this very simple question so you can practice a little bit the difference between gusta and gustan: ¿Qué te gusta hacer en tu tiempo libre? And don't forget to send us your comments and suggestions.
Do you know how to say the verb "to be" in Spanish? The answer to that question has two options: ser and estar. In fact, mastering the verbs ser and estar is one of the first challenges you need to tackle when learning Spanish. In order to help you out with this challenge, we're going to share a very simple trick with you. Hopefully, it will help you remember when to use ser and estar.
The trick is very simple. All you need to remember are these two words: DOCTOR and PLACE. Use the former for the verb ser and the latter for the verb estar.
The word DOCTOR stands for the following:
Let's see some examples using the third person singular of ser in the present tense:
"El coronavirus es un virus contagioso".
"The coronavirus is a contagious virus."
Caption 27, El Coronavirus Introducción y vocabularioPlay Caption
Tu papá es jefe de cartera, mi amor.
Your dad is a portfolio manager, my love.
Caption 52, Los Años Maravillosos Capítulo 3 - Part 3Play Caption
Él es un chico... Es muy simpático,
He's a guy... He's very nice,Play Caption
Diremos, "¿Qué hora es?"
We'll say, "What time is it?"
Caption 49, Español para principiantes La horaPlay Caption
Mi... mi madre es libanesa, mi padre de España
My... my mother is Lebanese, my father [is] from SpainPlay Caption
Esa es mi tía Silvia.
That is my Aunt Silvia.
Caption 24, Español para principiantes DemostrativosPlay Caption
The word PLACE stands for the following:
Let's see some examples using the first person singular of estar in the present tense:
Ahora, estoy en el centro.
Now, I'm in the center.
Caption 25, Raquel Las direccionesPlay Caption
Ahora estoy en el Monumento Natural Dunas de Artola, en la Playa de Cabopino,
Now I'm at the Dunas of Artola [Artola Dunes] Natural Monument, on Cabopino Beach,
Captions 31-32, Viajando con Fermín Dunas de MarbellaPlay Caption
Silvia, ¿qué estás haciendo? Estoy bebiendo un vaso de agua.
Silvia, what are you doing? I'm drinking a glass of water.
Captions 25-26, El Aula Azul Actividades diarias: En casa con SilviaPlay Caption
Ay... ¿Y puedes llamar a mi trabajo y decir que estoy enferma?
Oh... And can you call my work and say I'm sick?Play Caption
Estoy triste. Estoy triste.
I am sad. I am sad.
Captions 9-10, El Aula Azul Estados de ánimoPlay Caption
Finally, we want to leave you with a little rhyme that will help you to choose the appropriate verb between ser and estar. This little rhyme, which is quite handy for the verb estar, goes like this:
For how you feel and where you are,
always use the verb ESTAR.
In other words, keep in mind that when talking about emotions and location you should always use the verb estar.
That's it for today. We hope this little trick helps you to understand the difference between ser and estar, a little bit better. And don't forget to send us your comments and suggestions.
Do you know how to say "yellow" or "purple" in Spanish? Get ready to learn how to write and say the names of the colors in Spanish.
Let's take a look at this list of the primary colors in Spanish.
Even though there are millions of colors out there, most of the time we use only a limited number of colors in our daily life. The following list features the names of the most frequently used colors in Spanish and English.
- amarillo (yellow)
- anaranjado or naranja (orange)
- añil or índigo (indigo)
- azul (blue)
- blanco (white)
- dorado (golden)
- escarlata (scarlet)
- fucsia (fuchsia)
- gris (gray)
- marrón or café (brown)
- morado (purple)
- negro (black)
- plateado (silver)
- rojo (red)
- rosa or rosado (pink)
- violeta (violet)
Now, it's time to learn how to say the colors in Spanish.
Recorta un cuadro de papel amarillo de cinco centímetros
Cut out a five centimeter yellow square from yellow paperPlay Caption
anaranjado or naranja
Adentro, son de color anaranjado.
Inside, they are orange-colored.Play Caption
By the way, do you know how to say "orange" (the fruit) in Spanish? The answer is "naranja"!
Ay, me encanta tu camiseta azul.
Oh, I love your blue shirt.
Caption 3, Español para principiantes Los coloresPlay Caption
Mi perro pequeño es blanco.
My small dog is white.Play Caption
y el negro, donde se tira lo orgánico
and the black one, where the organic [waste] is thrown away
Caption 7, Rosa ReciclarPlay Caption
el verde, donde va el vidrio,
the green one, where the glass goes,
Caption 5, Rosa ReciclarPlay Caption
Mi cocina es de madera de color marrón.
My kitchen is (made) of brown-colored wood.
Caption 23, Ariana Mi CasaPlay Caption
Keep in mind that some people prefer to use to word "café" instead of "marrón" when referring to the color "brown."
Predominan los colores verde, morado,
The colors green, purple, predominate,
Caption 46, Viajando con Fermín Dunas de MarbellaPlay Caption
It is also quite common to use the adjective "púrpura" when talking about the color purple.
el rojo carmesí, que es un rojo frío,
the Crimson Red, which is a cool red,Play Caption
Let's finish this lesson with a little quiz. Can you provide the English word for each one of the seven colors of the rainbow in Spanish? Try it out!
1. rojo = ???
2. naranja or anaranjado = ???
3. amarillo = ???
4. verde = ???
5. azul = ???
6. añil = ???
7. violeta = ???
Did you get them all? If you didn't, you can always go back and check out the list we provided at the beginning of this lesson with the Spanish colors in alphabetical order.
That's it for today. We hope you enjoyed this lesson and don't forget to send us your comments and suggestions.
How many question words in Spanish are you familiar with? Do you know how to write a question in Spanish? Asking questions is one of the most important skills you need to master in the language you are learning. In this lesson, we will learn the most important interrogative words in Spanish. However, before we explore those words, let's discuss a couple of things about asking questions in Spanish.
'Pregunta' is how you say the word 'question' in Spanish. 'Pregunta' is a feminine noun and its plural form is 'preguntas'. Let's practice the pronunciation of this term:
Kevin, la pregunta es:
Kevin, the question is:
Caption 13, Los Años Maravillosos Capítulo 1 - Part 8Play Caption
Los voy a dejar con cuatro preguntas.
I am going to leave you with four questions.Play Caption
Do you know how to write a question in Spanish? Let's take a look at the basic structure of a question in Spanish.
To begin with, you need to stick to the rules of Spanish punctuation. Because of that, when you write a question in Spanish you need to remember that question marks are always double-sided. In other words, you need to start the question with an opening question mark (¿) and end it with a closing one (?):
¿Cómo es Japón? ¿Qué te gusta de Japón?
What's Japan like? What do you like about Japan?
Captions 69-70, Clase Aula Azul Pedir deseos - Part 1Play Caption
Let's start with simple questions. Believe it or not, for these kinds of questions your intonation is what matters the most. You basically make Yes/No questions by transforming a statement into a question. The Spanish question structure for these kinds of questions is the following:
¿ + (subject) + conjugated verb + (additional information) + ?
Please note that the terms in parenthesis are optional. Let's see a couple of examples:
A Pedro le gusta comer pizza (Pedro likes to eat pizza)
¿A Pedro le gusta comer pizza? (Does Pedro like to eat pizza?)
For negative questions, you just need to place a "no" before the conjugated verb.
No quieres estudiar (You don't want to study)
¿No quieres estudiar? (Don't you want to study?)
Go ahead and play the following clips so you can hear the intonation of the following Yes/No questions. Notice how the pitch of the speaker's voice gets higher at the end of the sentence when asking questions in Spanish:
Mmm... ¿Quieres ir al cine? -Sí, ¡buena idea!
Mmm... Do you want to go to the movies? -Yes, good idea!
Captions 45-46, Conversaciones en el parque Cap. 5: Me gusta mucho este parque.Play Caption
¿Necesitas ayuda? -Mmm... Sí.
Do you need help? -Mmm... Yes.
Captions 9-10, Español para principiantes La horaPlay Caption
¿No conoces Manhattan?
You don't know Manhattan?
Caption 37, Yago 2 El puma - Part 2Play Caption
As you can see, it is very common to start Yes/No questions with a conjugated verb.
The following is the Spanish question structure you need to keep mind when your question is aimed at getting some sort of information:
¿ + (preposition) + question word + conjugated verb + (additional information) + ?
Please note that the terms in parenthesis are optional. Let's see a couple of examples:
¡Oh! ¿Dónde está el cajero automático?
Oh! Where's the ATM?
Caption 36, Natalia de Ecuador Palabras de uso básicoPlay Caption
In the example above, we have the following structure:
¿ + question word (dónde) + conjugated verb (está) + additional information (el cajero automático) + ?
Let's listen to another clip:
¿Desde cuándo tienes este piso?
Since when have you had this apartment?
Caption 35, 75 minutos Gangas para ricos - Part 13Play Caption
In this last example, the Spanish question structure is the following:
¿ + preposition (desde) + question word (cuándo) + conjugated verb (tienes) + additional information (este piso) + ?
Now that we have seen the structure of a question, let's take a look at some Spanish question words in sentences.
It's time to review the most important interrogative words in Spanish. If you are thinking about WH questions, you are right. Let's find out what the Spanish question words are for 'what', 'which', 'when', 'where', 'who', 'why' and 'how'.
For your reference, here's a list of the top question words in Spanish.
What / Which (Qué / Cuál)
Why (Por qué)
Now, let's see each one of these question words in action with a list of some of the most basic Spanish questions you can ask.
And now, let's dive into our list.
What / Which (Qué / Cuál)
Diremos, "¿Qué hora es?"
We'll say, "What time is it?"
Caption 49, Español para principiantes La horaPlay Caption
O, ¿A qué te dedicas?
Or, What do you do? [with "tú"].
Caption 17, Karla e Isabel Tú y UstedPlay Caption
Oye, y ¿en qué trabajas?
Hey, and what do you do [for a living]?
Caption 82, Ricardo La compañera de casa - Part 1Play Caption
Por supuesto; ¿cuál es su dirección de correo?
Of course; what is your e-mail address?
Caption 69, Negocios Empezar en un nuevo trabajo - Part 2Play Caption
¿Recuerdas cuál era la copa para servir vino?
Do you remember which cup was the one for serving wine?
Caption 36, Ana Carolina El comedorPlay Caption
¿Y cuándo hizo el "check-in"?
And when did he check-in?Play Caption
¿Cuándo terminas de estudiar?
When do you finish studying?Play Caption
¿De dónde eres?
Where are you from?
Caption 36, Curso de español ¿De dónde eres?Play Caption
Y ¿en dónde vives?
And where do you live?
Caption 8, Cleer Entrevista a LilaPlay Caption
Let's see a couple of clips from Raquel to see the kind of questions you ask when you want to find out where something is located:
¿Me podrías decir dónde está el baño?
Could you tell me where the bathroom is?Play Caption
¿Sabes dónde hay alguna farmacia?
Do you know where there's a pharmacy?
Caption 24, Raquel Expresiones para un festival de música.Play Caption
We use 'who' when we want to find out someone's identity. Let's see a couple of examples:
Mi jugador favorito juega en el Real Madrid. ¿Quién es?
My favorite player plays for Real Madrid. Who is it?
Captions 19-20, El Aula Azul Las Profesiones - Part 1Play Caption
¿Usted quién es? Roberto. Un amigo.
Who are you? Roberto. A friend.
Captions 24-25, Yago 9 Recuperación - Part 2Play Caption
Why (Por qué)
¿Por qué dices eso? -No...
Why are you saying that? -No...
Caption 14, Cortometraje Beta - Part 3Play Caption
Para saludar, podemos decir: "Hola. ¿Cómo estás? ¿Todo bien?"
To greet (people), we can say: "Hello. How are you? (Is) everything good?"
Caption 7, Español en las calles Varias expresionesPlay Caption
Keep in mind that the word 'cómo' is not always translated as the English word 'how'. In fact, one of the most basic Spanish questions you can ask is a good example of that:
Buenos días, ¿cómo te llamas?
Good morning, what's your name?
Caption 8, La rutina diaria La mañanaPlay Caption
When we want to find out someone's age or the price of an object, we combine 'how' with other words such as 'old' or 'much'. When we want to get that kind of information, we use other interrogative words in Spanish. Let's take a look:
Ah, lindo. ¿Cuánto cuesta?
Oh, nice. How much does it cost?
Captions 33-34, Natalia de Ecuador Palabras de uso básicoPlay Caption
¿Cuántos años tienes?
How old are you?
Caption 6, Cleer Entrevista a LilaPlay Caption
Ah, vale. ¿Cuántos hijos tienes?
Oh, OK. How many sons do you have?
Caption 39, Clase Aula Azul El verbo parecer - Part 7Play Caption
¿Y cuántas botellas de agua hay aquí?
And how many bottles of water are there here?Play Caption
And that's it for now. We hope you use this review of the most important Spanish question words as the perfect excuse to start asking questions in Spanish. Are you ready? We encourage you to do that and don't forget to send us your questions and comments.
Let's talk about family! Do you know how to say words like "father" or "cousin" in Spanish? Today, we will learn how to say the names of the most important family members in Spanish. In particular, we will see how to write and pronounce those names. Let's take a look.
Familia is the Spanish word for family. It is important to say that this is a feminine collective noun. Collective nouns are words that we use for particular groups. However, these nouns are treated as singular words. Let's see how this works:
Mi familia es pequeña y cálida. Considerando que "familia" es un sustantivo colectivo femenino, conjugamos el verbo en tercera persona del singular y utilizamos adjetivos femeninos, "pequeña" y "cálida", para elaborar la concordancia de manera correcta.
My family is small and warm. Considering that "familia" is a feminine collective noun, we conjugate the verb in third person singular and use feminine adjectives, "pequeña" [small] and "cálida" [warm], to create agreement in the correct way.
Captions 16-20, Carlos explica Sustantivos colectivosPlay Caption
The following are the names of the most important family member in Spanish.
Comes bastante verdura, tu madre que te quiere.
Eat enough vegetables, your mother who loves you.Play Caption
Very often, however, people refer to their mothers using the following terms:
Mamá, quería preguntarte algo.
Mom, I wanted to ask you something.
Caption 2, Yago 10 Enfrentamientos - Part 7Play Caption
¿Haciendo la tarea con mami? -Sí.
Doing your homework with Mommy? -Yes.
Caption 24, Yago 11 Prisión - Part 5Play Caption
"A mi padre siempre le toca trabajar mucho todos los viernes".
"My father always has to work a lot every Friday."
Caption 53, Carlos explica Vocabulario: El verbo “tocar”Play Caption
However, just like for the word "mother", there are some other terms people use when talking with or about their fathers:
Fue cuando me di cuenta no tenía ni idea de lo que hacía mi papá.
It was then that I realized I had no idea what my dad did.
Caption 30, Los Años Maravillosos Capítulo 3 - Part 3Play Caption
Papi, cualquier hora es buena.
Daddy, any hour is good.
Caption 5, X6 1 - La banda - Part 3Play Caption
Quiero presentarles a mi hijo; Kevin, él es Felipe,
I want to introduce you to my son; Kevin, this is Felipe,
Caption 16, Los Años Maravillosos Capítulo 3 - Part 6Play Caption
Y muy feliz de tener a mi lado a mi hija,
And very happy to have my daughter by my side,
Caption 38, Yolimar Gimón sobre el concurso Mrs. VenezuelaPlay Caption
Después aquí tengo a mi hermano, José.
Then here I have my brother, Jose.
Caption 11, Curso de español Vamos a hablar de la familiaPlay Caption
pero que estaba alejando a mi hermana de nosotros.
but which was taking my sister away from us.
Caption 21, Los Años Maravillosos Capítulo 4 - Part 2Play Caption
Grandpa, Grandpa!Play Caption
Abuela, podemos hablar dos minutos por favor.
Grandmother, can we talk for two minutes, please.
Caption 4, Muñeca Brava 18 - La Apuesta - Part 6Play Caption
Mi nieto no existe.
My grandson does not exist.
Caption 53, Muñeca Brava 33 El partido - Part 7Play Caption
La nieta de María.
Caption 30, Zoraida en Coro El pintor YepezPlay Caption
Y su tío Aldo cree que está muerto, su tío Lucio confía en que esté vivo.
And his Uncle Aldo believes that he's dead, his Uncle Lucio has faith that he's alive.
Caption 22, Yago 8 Descubrimiento - Part 3Play Caption
Esa es mi tía Silvia.
That is my Aunt Silvia.
Caption 24, Español para principiantes DemostrativosPlay Caption
¿Hace cuánto tiempo que dejó de ver a su sobrino?
How long ago did you stop seeing your nephew?
Caption 69, Yago 8 Descubrimiento - Part 1Play Caption
Sobrina. Muy bien.
Niece. Very good.
Caption 43, Curso de español Vamos a hablar de la familiaPlay Caption
Sí, me gusta mucho mi primo Pedro.
Yes, I like my cousin Pedro very much.
Caption 40, El Aula Azul Mis PrimosPlay Caption
Esta mañana mi prima se ha roto la pierna jugando al fútbol.
This morning my cousin has broken her leg playing soccer.Play Caption
Finally, keep in mind that when using the plural forms of these nouns, you should use the male form when the group is made of both male and female members:
Two cousins (both male): Dos primos
Two cousins (both female): Dos primas
Two cousing (one male and one female): Dos primos
That's it for today. We invite you to take a piece of paper and design your family tree with the names of the family members in Spanish. And don't forget to send us your comments and suggestions.
Do you know the names of the months in Spanish? Believe it or not, the names of the months in Spanish are quite similar to their English equivalents. Let's look at how to write and pronounce the months of the year in Spanish language.
The answer is mes. If you want to use the plural form, you need to use the term meses. Also, when talking about months in Spanish keep in mind the following:
One month: Un mes
Two months: Dos meses
Last month: El mes pasado
Next month: El próximo mes
Before we hear how to pronounce the names of the 12 months in Spanish, let's take a look at the following list featuring the months in Spanish and English:
Let's hear the following sentences so you can practice the pronunciation of the 12 months in Spanish.
Estos son los meses del año. Enero.
These are the months of the year. January.
Captions 1-2, El Aula Azul Estaciones y MesesPlay Caption
diecinueve de febrero. -¡Oh! ¿Diecinueve de febrero?
February nineteenth. -Oh! February nineteenth?
Captions 13-14, Extr@: Extra en español Ep 01 La llegada de Sam - Part 2Play Caption
Las Fallas son unas fiestas que se celebran en Valencia durante el mes de marzo.
The Fallas is a festival celebrated in Valencia during the month of March.
Caption 25, Raquel Fiestas de EspañaPlay Caption
Me gustaría reservar una cabaña para la primera semana de abril.
I would like to reserve a cabin for the first week of April.
Caption 4, Cleer y Lida Reservando una habitaciónPlay Caption
En mayo, salen las flores.
In May, the flowers come out.
Caption 18, El Aula Azul Estaciones y MesesPlay Caption
En junio, empieza el verano.
In June, the summer starts.
Caption 19, El Aula Azul Estaciones y MesesPlay Caption
En julio. Vendría el mes de julio entero.
In July. He'd come for the whole month of July.Play Caption
en agosto, miles de voluntarios vienen a este sitio
in August, thousands of volunteers come to this site
Caption 53, Rosa Laguna Fuente de PiedraPlay Caption
Por ejemplo, durante el Festival de Cine que se celebra en San Sebastián en el mes de septiembre.
For example, during the Film Festival that is held in San Sebastian in the month of September.
Captions 13-14, San Sebastián Palacio de MiramarPlay Caption
Desde octubre se comienza la venta de los monigotes.
From October the selling of the dolls begins.
Caption 55, Otavalo Artesano de monigotes de Año ViejoPlay Caption
Fue inaugurado el treinta de noviembre de mil novecientos noventa y cuatro.
It was opened on November thirtieth nineteen ninety-four.Play Caption
Normalmente, suele nevar en diciembre,
Normally, it typically snows in December,
Caption 69, Clara y Cristina Hablan de actividadesPlay Caption
Finally, did you notice anything in particular in the previous sentences regarding the spelling of the names of the months in Spanish? Unlike English, in Spanish the names of the months don't have to be capitalized.
That's it for today. Try to write a couple of sentences with the months in Spanish and read them aloud so you can practice their pronunciation. And don’t forget to send us your feedback and suggestions.
In this lesson, we will talk about Spanish subject pronouns. Let’s first review what subject pronouns are and enumerate the subject pronouns in English.
Since the definition of a subject pronoun is "a word that takes the place of a noun acting as the subject of a clause or sentence," we must first understand what a subject is.
Most simply stated, the subject of a sentence is what it's about, the noun that is being or doing something. Here are some examples of sentences with their subjects indicated beneath them:
Samantha is studying Spanish.
The tango is a beautiful dance.
Marina, Liam and I went to the movies.
Subject: Marina, Liam and I
Edison is from the Dominican Republic.
The chocolates taste amazing.
Subject: The chocolates
In order to avoid, for instance, repeating “the chocolates” over and over in a paragraph where we wish to thoroughly describe them, we could replace the subject, “the chocolates,” with the subject pronoun, “they.” Below, within the structures of the previous sentences, the subjects have been replaced with their equivalent subject pronouns:
She is studying Spanish.
It is a beautiful dance.
We went to the movies.
He is from the Dominican Republic.
They taste amazing.
A complete list of the English subject pronouns is as follows: I, we, you, he, she, it, they.
Now, let’s take a look at how the English subject pronouns correspond to their Spanish counterparts:
- First person (singular / plural): EN: I / we | SP: yo / nosotros, nosotras
- Second person (singular / plural): EN: you / you | SP: tú, usted, vos / vosotros, vosotras, ustedes
- Third person (singular / plural): EN: he, she, it / they | SP: él, ella / ellos, ellas
Looking at them side by side, you may notice that there are far more Spanish subject pronouns than English ones due to the many nuances they express when compared to their less specific English equivalents. Some differences you may notice between the English subject pronouns and the Spanish ones are as follows:
1. The first person plural (“we” in English) in Spanish distinguishes between masculine and feminine in the sense that, if the “we” refers to a group of only males or a mixed group of males and females, nosotros is used, whereas if the group is all female, nosotras is employed. Since English does not make this distinction, nothing can be told about the gender of the group upon simply hearing a sentence beginning with “we.”
2. The second person singular (“you” in English) has three different Spanish translations: tú, usted, and vos. So, what’s the difference between them? Generally speaking, tú and vos are employed similarly to address people with whom one is more familiar — a less formal “you” — whereas usted is a more formal and respectful “you,” typically reserved for people we don’t know as well or, for example, for our elders.
Keep in mind that while tú is more commonly employed as the informal “you” in many Spanish-speaking countries, vos is typically used in other countries or regions. In contrast, the English subject pronoun “you” can be employed regardless of the relationship we have with the person we are addressing, their age, or the formality of the situation.
3. The second person plural also has several distinctions in Spanish not present in English. Whereas “you” is both singular and plural in English, Spanish requires a different subject pronoun to indicate that more than one person is being spoken to. Ustedes, vosotros and vosotras are the three second-person plural subject pronouns in Spanish, which take both gender and formality/familiarity into account.
In most Spanish-speaking countries, ustedes is the only second person plural subject pronoun utilized and can thus be used regardless of the formality of the situation or the gender of the people being addressed. Things are different in Spain, where usted would be used to address a single person in a more formal situation. Ustedes would then be its extension when addressing more than one person.
Speaking familiarly, with tú, the plural used in Spain would be vosotros and vosotras. These second person plural pronouns work the same way as the first person plural pronouns, nosotros and nosotras: Vosotros is used to address more than one male or a mixed group, familiarly, while vosotras will refer to more than one female.
4. The same kind of situation presents itself in the third person plural. The English “they” does not consider gender, but its Spanish equivalents ellos and ellas, do take gender into account, just as nosotros/nosotras and vosotros/vosotras do. Ellos is used for an all-male or mixed group, while ellas is used for more than one female.
The English subject pronoun “it” generally replaces a subject that isn't a person or animal. Since there is no such subject pronoun in Spanish, how is the idea of “it” expressed? Let’s look at an example from a Yabla Spanish video:
¿El favorito mío? Y el dulce de leche bombón. Es mi debilidad.
My favorite? "Dulce de leche bombon." It's my weakness.
Captions 35-36, Buenos Aires Heladería CumelenPlay Caption
You can see that, although we would say “It’s my weakness” in English when referring to the yummy dulce de leche ice cream, “it’s” being a contraction of “it is,” in Spanish, the “it” is simply omitted, and the verb, “es” (the third person singular conjugation of ser, or “to be”) is sufficient.
Because of this, a common error for Spanish speakers learning English is to try to replicate this structure in English by saying or writing something like, “Is my weakness.” However, this is not grammatically sound and, although it is often acceptable to omit a subject pronoun in Spanish, the same is not so in English, where the “it” is indeed necessary.
Let’s look at one more example:
Pero cuando llueve no hay otro remedio
But, when it rains, there isn't any other choice
Caption 86, 75 minutos Del campo a la mesa - Part 13Play Caption
Note that in English, since “it” in this example does not actually refer to anything concrete (does not replace a particular word), it is known as a “dummy” (or expletive or pleonastic) pronoun, which is still necessary to express this idea correctly. In contrast, in Spanish, the verb “llueve” (the third person singular conjugation of llover, or “to rain”) can simply be used without a pronoun to express the idea of “it.”
Even in cases which don’t involve “it,” due to the more specific manner in which Spanish verbs are conjugated according to their subject pronouns, it is not always necessary to write out the subject pronoun:
Mientras leo el diario, respondo los correos electrónicos.
While I read the newspaper, I respond to emails.
Caption 9, GoSpanish La rutina diaria de MaruPlay Caption
Although this could also be written as Mientras yo leo el diario, yo respondo los correos electrónicos, the first-person singular verb conjugations leo and respondo let us know that the subject pronoun is yo, and thus, it's not necessary to include it.
This is not the case in English, as the subject pronoun “I” is indeed necessary in order for the sentence to make sense (“While read the newspaper, respond to e-mails” would definitely not fly). One reason for this is that verb tenses in English tend to be much less specific to their subject pronouns.
To reiterate this idea, let’s contrast the English present and past verb tenses with their Spanish equivalents:
ENGLISH (present / past):
I speak / spoke
You speak / spoke
He speaks / spoke
She speaks / spoke
It speaks / spoke
We speak / spoke
You speak / spoke
They speak / spoke
SPANISH (present / preterite):
Yo hablo / hablé
Tú hablas / hablaste
Vos hablás / hablaste
Él, ella, usted habla / habló
Nosotros/as hablamos / hablamos
Vosotros/as habláis / hablasteis
Ellos/as, ustedes haban / hablaron
You may notice that the English present tense conjugations are limited to just “speak” (for “I,” “you,” “we” and “they”) and “speaks” (for “he,” “she” and “it”), while there is no variation whatsoever for the past tense, which regardless of the subject pronoun, is “spoke.”
In Spanish, on the other hand, we see a total of seven different conjugations in the present tense and six in the preterite, a revelation which may seem daunting to many English-speaking students of Spanish! And those are just two out of the fourteen Spanish verb tenses.
To conclude, let’s look at one last example:
Y, ¿va a pedirle a Lisa Bernal que sea su pareja en la fiesta?
And, are you going to ask Lisa Bernal to be your date at the party?
Caption 1, Los Años Maravillosos Capitulo 6 - Part 2Play Caption
Unlike the previous case in which the verb conjugations leo and respondo were specific to the Spanish subject pronoun, yo, this one is a bit more ambiguous, as the verb conjugation va (of the verb ir, or “to go”) could correspond to the Spanish subject pronouns él, ella, or usted. So, if this sentence were encountered in isolation, the possible translations could be as follows:
- And, is he going to ask Lisa Bernal to be his date at the party?
- And, are you going to ask Lisa Bernal to be your date at the party?
- And, is she going to ask Lisa Bernal to be her date at the party?
- And, is it going to ask Lisa Bernal to be its date at the party?
Although the last option does not seem logically plausible, how do we know which one of the others is correct in the absence of a subject pronoun? Context. Often in print or video media or even in conversation, the subject is introduced in a previous sentence.
However, since this is the first sentence in this video, we are left to infer from the characters’ subsequent dialogue that the correct translation is, “And, are you going to ask Lisa Bernal to be your date at the party?” where Kevin’s friend, Fede, is addressing him as “usted” (as a side note, even close friends and family members often address one another as “usted” in certain parts of Colombia).
Although many beginning Spanish students might feel overwhelmed by the multitude of Spanish subject pronouns and the task of having to conjugate verbs based upon them, we hope that this lesson has shed some light on some of the many fascinating differences between subject pronouns in English and Spanish. And don't forget to send us your comments and suggestions.
Spanish punctuation may seem difficult if you are just learning the language. However, if you keep in mind the following rules, you will definitely improve your writing and the use of punctuation in Spanish.
In Spanish, you always need to use opening and closing punctuation. Keep this in mind especially for question marks and exclamation points.
¿Qué más cosas hay en el sueño?
What other things are there in the dream?
Caption 15, El Aula Azul La Doctora Consejos: Hay y estarPlay Caption
¡Todo el mundo paga para que lo escuchen!
Everyone pays for them to listen to you!
Caption 45, Yago 14 La peruana - Part 7Play Caption
D.A.S. [Departamento Administrativo de Seguridad].
A.D.S [Administrative Department of Security].Play Caption
After a question mark or exclamation point, you can put any punctuation mark except a period.
¡Acompáñame! Este recorrido inicia en la Calle Doctor Coss,
Join me! This tour begins at Doctor Coss Street,
Captions 5-6, Paseando con Karen Canal Santa LucíaPlay Caption
Don't put a comma or semicolon before an opening parenthesis. However, feel free to put those marks after the closing parenthesis.
If you want to put a period at the end of a sentence that is between quotations marks, you need to put the period after the closing quotation mark.
La cita de hoy es de Aldous Huxley y dice así: "Todos los hombres son dioses para su perro".
Today's quote is by Aldous Huxley and goes like this: "To his dog, every man is Napoleon" [literally "To their dog, all men are gods].
Captions 8-10, Los casos de Yabla El perrito malcriado - Part 1Play Caption
Unless you are quoting something (as in the example we mentioned for rule 6) or writing a particular document (e.g. a letter), you always need to use lower case after a colon.
Luego tendrá usted que rellenar un formulario con las siguientes cuestiones: país de recogida, ciudad de recogida,
Then you will have to fill out a form with the following questions: country of pickup, city of pickup,
Captions 14-16, Raquel Alquiler de cochePlay Caption
Sí, Zárate, ¿qué pasó?
Yes, Zarate, what happened?Play Caption
There are many more rules regarding punctuation in Spanish. However, we invite you to keep in mind the rules we just mentioned here because that way you'll certainly improve your writing in Spanish. And don't forget to send us your comments and suggestions.
Do you know how to say professions in Spanish? Do you know the Spanish words for professions such as 'lawyer' or 'journalist'? Today, we will talk about job titles and professions in Spanish so get ready to see how to write and pronounce some of the most common occupations out there. However, before we jump into the list of professions, let's see how to ask a very basic question when it comes to jobs.
When we want to find out what someone does for a living, we usually use questions like: what do you do for work?, what do you do for a living? or simply, what do you do? There are also different options in Spanish:
¿A qué te dedicas? Soy profesor de fotografía.
What do you do? I'm a photography teacher.
Captions 12-13, 75 minutos Gangas para ricos - Part 5Play Caption
Oye, y ¿en qué trabajas? Estoy trabajando actualmente en una firma de abogados.
Hey, and what do you do [for a living]? I'm working currently at a law firm.
Captions 82-83, Ricardo La compañera de casa - Part 1Play Caption
Ahora, ¿y qué haces tú? Bueno, yo soy mecánico.
Now, what do you do? Well, I'm a mechanic.
Captions 18-19, Encuentro Volkswagen en Adícora Escarabajos en la playa - Part 1Play Caption
You can also use that kind of question even if you are a student:
Bueno, Cristina, ¿tú a qué te dedicas? Estoy estudiando en Sevilla.
Well, Cristina, what do you do for a living? I am studying in Seville.
Captions 60-62, Clara y Cristina SaludarPlay Caption
Now, let's take a look at some of the most common professions in Spanish. Remember to listen to the audioclips so you can hear how to pronounce the word. Also, keep in mind that the names of most professions change with the gender so make sure to take a look at the rules that we will mention about that.
When the masculine noun ends in o, the feminine noun ends in a. There are several professions in Spanish that fall into this group:
1. El abogado | La abogada (The lawyer)
Es un abogado joven que recién se está metiendo en la política.
He's a young lawyer who has recently been getting involved in politics.
Caption 57, Muñeca Brava 45 El secreto - Part 5Play Caption
2. El arquitecto | La arquitecta (The architect)
Bueno, yo soy Leif, eh... soy arquitecto y llevo trabajando en Londres cuatro años.
Well, I am Leif, um... I am an architect and have been working in London for four years.
Captions 2-3, Leif El Arquitecto Español y su Arte - Part 1Play Caption
3. El cajero | La cajera (The cashier)
4. El carpintero | La carpintera (The carpenter)
5. El ingeniero | La ingeniera (The engineer)6
6. El psicólogo | La piscóloga (The psychologist)
When the noun ends in a consonant, you just need to add an a at the end to form the feminine noun.
7. El administrador | La administradora (The administrator)
pero si quiere, yo con mucho gusto hablo con el administrador para que nos ayude.
but if you want, I'll gladly talk to the administrator so he can help us.
Captions 16-17, Confidencial: El rey de la estafa Capítulo 3 - Part 3Play Caption
8. El director | La directora (The director)
9. El editor | La editora (The editor)
10. El doctor | La doctora (The doctor)
Consultorio de la doctora Castaño, buenos días.
Doctor Castaño's office, good morning.Play Caption
If you take the previous 3 nouns, you can see that there are various nouns ending in 'or' that are identical in English and Spanish.
11. El escritor | La escritora (The writer)
12. El profesor | La profesora (The teacher)
Yo soy profesora de español,
I am a Spanish teacher,
Caption 12, El Aula Azul Actividades DiariasPlay Caption
There are also some nouns that end in -ista, -ia and -e, that stay them same for both male and female. However, in order to make the distinction, you need to change the article accordingly. Let's see some examples:
13. El estudiante | La estudiante (The student)
14. El dentista | la dentista (The dentist)
Por ejemplo: el estudiante, la estudiante. El dentista, la dentista.
For example: the male student, the female student. The male dentist, the female dentist.
Captions 32-33, Isabel El Género Gramatical - Masculino y FemeninoPlay Caption
15. El periodista | La periodista (The journalist)
"El periodista escribe el artículo para el periódico".
"The journalist writes the article for the newspaper."
Caption 22, Lecciones con Carolina La voz pasiva - Part 3Play Caption
That's it for today. We know there are hundreds of more occupations and job titles out there. However, we hope this lesson will help you to remember the names of some of the most well-known occupations in Spanish. Try to find 10 professions more and don’t forget to send us your feedback and suggestions.
As a beginner Spanish student, the word bajo may well be among the first words one learns, typically as an adjective meaning “short.” However, like many words in Spanish, this word has a whole plethora of meanings and can additionally function as a preposition, adverb, noun, and even a verb!
Let’s start by examining the use of the word bajo as a preposition. Although its translation is almost always “under” or “below,” like its English equivalent, this could refer not only to physical location, but also to the state of being subject to some influence. Let’s take a look at the following examples from our Yabla Spanish library.
One possible meaning of the preposition bajo is "in a position below something else":
pero no entiendo qué hace mi amiga un día de semana bajo este árbol tan maravilloso.
but I don't understand what is my friend doing on a weekday under this wonderful tree.Play Caption
Another, similar meaning of “bajo,” which also involves location, suggests that something is beneath the surface or covered by something:
Tengo aquí bajo mi almohada tu fotografía
I have your picture here under my pillow
Caption 20, La Oreja de Van Gogh InmortalPlay Caption
Moving on to uses of the preposition bajo not involving location, like “under” in English, bajo could also express the concept of being less than:
congelando lo que es la punta de la botella en una solución que está a diez o quince grados bajo cero.
freezing the tip of the bottle in a solution that is ten or fifteen degrees below zero.
Captions 33-34, Europa Abierta Champagne en AndalucíaPlay Caption
The Spanish preposition bajo could additionally mean "in accordance with" or "subject to the terms of," for example, some agreement:
Algunos clientes bajo contrato, le pre-maduramos la fruta
[For] some customers under contract, we pre-ripen the fruit
Caption 99, 75 minutos Del campo a la mesa - Part 18Play Caption
And finally, although we have only touched on some of its many nuanced meanings, we’ll take a look at an example in which the preposition bajo entails being managed or governed by something:
Para su información, todo el personal de servicio está bajo mi mando, ¿sí?
For your information, all the service staff is under my authority, right?
Caption 49, Muñeca Brava 3 Nueva Casa - Part 8Play Caption
Now, let’s look at bajo as an adjective. Its most common translations are “short” or “low,” both in terms of height or level and in reference to intensity or morality. Here are some examples from the Yabla Spanish video library:
Y es muy gracioso porque Pedro es todo lo contrario de Carolina. Es bajo, es gordo,
And it's very funny because Pedro is totally the opposite of Carolina. He's short, he's fat,
Captions 32-33, El Aula Azul Mis PrimosPlay Caption
Desde chiquito el bajo mundo conocía
Since he was a child, he knew the underworld
Caption 4, La Secta ConsejoPlay Caption
Se manifestaban porque el sueldo era muy bajo,
They were on strike because their salary was very low,
Caption 33, Con ánimo de lucro Cortometraje - Part 4Play Caption
As an adverb, bajo could also be translated as “low” in some cases (for example, when describing a helicopter flying “low”) or “softly” or “quietly” when referring to one’s speech:
¡Que le quede claro! -¡Shhhhh, habla bajo!
Let that be clear to you! -Shhhhh, speak quietly!
Caption 42, Yago 7 Encuentros - Part 2Play Caption
Much more straightforwardly, as a noun, the word bajo refers to the musical instrument, the bass:
Entonces yo dije: "Yo... yo puedo tocar... Yo puedo tocar el bajo."
So, I said, "I... I can play... I can play the bass."
Caption 50, Carli Muñoz Niñez - Part 2Play Caption
And finally, it is worth noting that bajo is the first person singular, present tense conjugation of the verb “bajar” (to go or come down or get off or out).
Ya está, la comida... -Sí, sí, sí, ya, yo ya bajo.
It's ready, the food... -Yes, yes, yes, now, I'm coming down now.
Caption 72, Muñeca Brava 44 El encuentro - Part 6Play Caption
We hope that this lesson has shed light on some of the ways the word bajo can function as a preposition - in addition to a noun, verb, adjective or adverb! If you would like to see many additional examples in context, simply enter the word bajo in the search bar at the top of the Videos page to find matches in the transcripts of the Yabla Spanish library. And don’t forget to send us your feedback and suggestions.
Do you know the days of the week in Spanish? Do words like lunes or domingo sound familiar to you? In this lesson, we will review the days of the week in Spanish in three different ways. First, you can listen to some random sentences containing the days of the week. Then, you will have the chance to listen to a short clip that shows you how to pronounce each day of the week. Finally, we will leave you with a list of the days of the week in Spanish and English. We hope this repetition helps you to memorize the names of the 7 days of the week in Spanish.
We use the days of the week all the time! The following sentences will help us to get familiar with the sound of the days of the week.
El lunes, por ejemplo, fui a trabajar.
On Monday for example, I went to work.
Caption 6, El Aula Azul La Doctora Consejos: El pasadoPlay Caption
Los martes, además, tenemos las "Tardes de Intercambio".
On Tuesdays, additionally, we have the "Exchange Afternoons."Play Caption
Todos los miércoles, voy con mi mejor amiga al cine.
Every Wednesday, I go with my best friend to the movies.
Caption 18, Ariana Mi SemanaPlay Caption
"Todos los jueves, aprendía nuevas canciones en mi clase de guitarra".
"Every Thursday, I used to learn new songs in my guitar class."
Caption 57, Carlos explica El pretérito Cap 4: Imperfecto IPlay Caption
Pensaré cada día en Daniel cuando él vuele a Guatemala el próximo viernes.
I will think about Daniel every day when he flies to Guatemala next Friday.
Caption 36, Conjugación El verbo 'pensar'Play Caption
El día más fuerte, o sea, de mayor afluencia de personal sería el sábado.
The busiest day, I mean, the one with the largest influx of people would be Saturday.
Caption 25, Mercado de San Miguel MisaelPlay Caption
Estaba pensando, el domingo me gustaría invitar a los Mendoza a tomar onces para que se animen un poquito, ¿hmm?
I was thinking, on Sunday I would like to invite the Mendozas to have an afternoon snack so that they can cheer up a little but, hmm?
Captions 11-12, Los Años Maravillosos Capítulo 4 - Part 6Play Caption
Let's take these sentences to mention something important. The plural form of the days of the week that end in 's' (lunes, martes, miércoles, jueves and viernes) is the same as their singular form. However, if you want to say the plural form of the days of the week that end in vowels (sábado and domingo), you need to add the letter 's' at the end. Here is a list of the singular and plural forms of the days of the week in Spanish:
el lunes - los lunes
el martes - los martes
el miércoles - los miércoles
el jueves - los jueves
el viernes - los viernes
el sábado - los sábados
el domingo - los domingos
Are you ready to practice the pronunciation of the 7 days of the week in Spanish? Let's take a look at the following clip from our friends Maru and Sol from GoSpanish.
Lunes, martes, miércoles, jueves. ¿Me ayudas, Sol? Sí. Viernes, sábado, y domingo.
Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday. Can you help me, Sol? Yes. Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.
Captions 24-32, Español para principiantes Los días de la semanaPlay Caption
In order to help you remember the names of the week in Spanish, the following list contains the days of the week in Spanish and English:
Lunes - Monday
Martes - Tuesday
Miércoles - Wednesday
Jueves - Thursday
Viernes - Friday
Sábado - Saturday
Domingo - Sunday
There is something important to remember: Unlike English, the days of the week in Spanish are not capitalized. They are capitalized only if they appear at the beginning of a sentence.
That's it for today. Try to write a couple of sentences with the days of the week in Spanish and read them aloud so you can practice their pronunciation. And don’t forget to send us your feedback and suggestions.
How many regular '-ir' verbs do you know in Spanish? Now that we have already talked about verbs ending in ‘-ar’ and verbs ending in '-er', it's time to take a look at the last main group of regular verbs. Again, keep in mind that we form regular verbs when we put together a verb stem and an infinitive ending. For example, the verb describir (to describe) is made with the verb stem 'describ' plus the infinitive ending '-ir'. With that being said, let's take a look at the following regular verbs ending in '-ir':
We know we have a regular verb when the verb stem doesn't change once it is conjugated. Do you want to see how that works in the simple present? Let’s use the verb abrir (to open) for this:
Abres el rombo,
You open the diamond,Play Caption
Now, let’s see how to conjugate a regular '-ir' verb in the simple past. Let's take the verb escribir (to write):
Gabriel García Márquez escribió muchos libros.
Gabriel Garcia Marquez wrote a lot of books.Play Caption
It is worth noting that for the first person plural (nosotros), the conjugation of the verb is exactly the same in both the simple present and the simple past:
pero cuando escribimos estas dos palabras,
but when we write these two words,Play Caption
Now, let’s take one of the most common verbs in Spanish in order to see the conjugation of a regular ‘ir’ verb in the simple future:
y que viviremos en un hogar agradable,
and that we will live in a nice home,
Caption 55, Negocios La solicitud de empleo - Part 2Play Caption
Unlike the simple present and past, the conjugation in the simple future leaves the verb as it is (vivir) only adding a different ending.
Let’s learn some more regular -ir verbs with the following sentences:
1. Aplaudir (to clap)
o por ejemplo, en el flamenco se aplaude así.
or for example, in flamenco one claps like this.
Caption 46, Marta de Madrid El cuerpo - El troncoPlay Caption
2. Decidir (to decide)
De un momento a otro, decidió quedarse en Bogotá,
From one minute to another, she decided to stay in Bogota,Play Caption
3. Discutir (to discuss/argue)
Chica, sabes que yo no discuto con novatas después del mediodía.
Girl, you know that I don't argue with rookies after noon.
Caption 57, NPS No puede ser 1 - El concurso - Part 2Play Caption
4. Subir (to climb/go up/increase)
Subimos la temperatura del depósito a ochenta grados.
We increase the temperature of the tank to eighty degrees.
Caption 25, Club de las ideas Biodiesel - Part 2Play Caption
5. Sufrir (to suffer)
sufres, gritas, nadie te da nada
you suffer, you scream, nobody gives you anything
Caption 21, Club de las ideas La motivaciónPlay Caption
That’s it for this lesson. Now that we have covered all the three groups of regular verbs, go ahead and try to write some sentences with verbs ending in -ar, -er and -ir. And don’t forget to send us your feedback and suggestions.
Are you familiar with prepositions in Spanish? Today, we will talk about the preposition en, which is one of the most commonly used prepositions in the Spanish language. In fact, this preposition works like the English prepositions “in,” “on” and “at.” Let's take a look.
We use the preposition en when we want to state that something ocurred in a particular year or when we want to make a reference to a particular season or month of the year. In other words, we use the preposition en when talking about time.
Esa institución dejó de existir en mil novecientos noventa y nueve
That institution ceased to exist in nineteen ninety-ninePlay Caption
Y en invierno suele hacer mucho frío.
And in winter it tends to be very cold.
Caption 15, Clara explica El tiempo - Part 1Play Caption
En abril, llueve mucho.
In April, it rains a lot.
Caption 17, El Aula Azul Estaciones y MesesPlay Caption
When it comes to time, we also use the preposition en when we want to express a particular amount of time:
En veinte minutos se va a servir la cena.
In twenty minutes dinner is going to be served.
Caption 3, Muñeca Brava 36 La pesquisa - Part 5Play Caption
The preposition en in Spanish is also used when we want to indicate the location of a person or object.
Estoy en la escuela, El Aula Azul.
I am at the school, The Blue Classroom.
Caption 4, El Aula Azul Ser y EstarPlay Caption
El perro de Ana duerme en el horno.
Ana's dog sleeps in the oven.Play Caption
One of the most common uses of the preposition en is when we use it to talk about means of transportation.
Me fui a Bélgica con mi novio en avión.
I went to Belgium with my boyfriend on a plane.
Caption 2, Blanca y Mariona Proyectos para el veranoPlay Caption
The preposition en is also used to express the value of something.
y las cabañas sin baño están en ochenta mil pesos.
and the cabins without a bathroom go for eighty thousand pesos.
Caption 35, Cleer y Lida Reservando una habitaciónPlay Caption
Finally, the preposition en is also used to indicate how something is carried out.
En silencio pensaré tan sólo en ti
In silence I will think only of you
Caption 34, La Oreja de Van Gogh Deseos De Cosas ImposiblesPlay Caption
In this example, notice how we can use the preposition en along with the verb pensar (to think) when we want to express "thinking of" someone or something.
Apart from the uses we have mentioned above, the preposition en can be found in various expressions that are quite common in Spanish. Let's look at some of them:
¿Es en serio?
Acuérdate que tenemos muchos amigos en común.
Remember that we have a lot of friends in common.Play Caption
En realidad, sólo con la práctica podemos entender mejor.
Actually, only with practice can we better understand.Play Caption
To summarize, the following are the most common uses of the preposition en in Spanish:
- When talking about time (years, month, seasons or amount of time)
- To indicate the location of a person or an object
- To indicate the means of transportation
- To express the value of something
- To indicate how something is carried out.
- In some very common expressions
That's it for today. Now that you know how to use the preposition en in Spanish, try to write some sentences with all the different uses we mentioned throughout this lesson. And don’t forget to send your feedback and suggestions.
In this lesson, we talk about the plural in Spanish. In particular, we talk about the plural when it refers to nouns. Let's start this lesson with a little quiz. Do you know the plural form of the following nouns?:
1. Casa (house)
2. Perro (dog)
3. Universidad (university)
4. Lápiz (pencil)
5. Jabalí (wild boar)
6. Análisis (analysis)
If you are not sure about how to make a singular noun plural in Spanish, we invite you to take a look at the following simple rules. While going through these rules, we will be unveiling the plural form of the 6 nouns we included in our quiz. Let's take a look.
- Casa (house) - Casas (houses)
- Estudiante (student) - Estudiantes (students)
- Perro (perro) - Perros (dogs)
Se escucha un perro.
You can hear a dog.Play Caption
Tus perros también son muy bonitos.
Your dogs are very beautiful too.Play Caption
- Papá (dad) - Papás (dads)
- Dominó (domino) - Dominós (dominoes)
- Café (coffee) - Cafés (coffees)
y les voy a mostrar el proceso de control de calidad de café de Colombia.
and I'm going to show you the quality-control process for coffee from Colombia.
Caption 5, Una Historia de Café La BodegaPlay Caption
Cada uno de estos cafés tiene distintas cualidades tanto físicas como sensoriales
Each one of these coffees has different qualities both physically and sensorially.
Caption 14, Una Historia de Café La BodegaPlay Caption
- Bisturí (scalpel) - Bisturíes or bisturís (scalpels)
- Jabalí (wild boar) - Jabalíes or jabalís (wild boars)
- Tabú (taboo) - Tabúes or tabús (taboos)
Generally speaking, however, it is preferred to use the plural formed with 'ES'.
Also, this rule is very common when you are dealing with adjectives of nationality:
- Iraní (Iranian) - Iraníes or iranís (Iranians)
- Árbol (tree) - Árboles (trees)
- Profesor (teacher) - Profesores (teachers)
- Universidad (university) - Universidades (universities)
- Rey (king) - Reyes (kings)
La rata esta es el rey de la estafa por allá en Europa.
This rat is the king con artist over there in Europe.Play Caption
Actualmente es la residencia oficial de los reyes de España,
Currently, it's the official residence of the King and Queen of Spain,
Caption 23, Madrid Un recorrido por la capital de EspañaPlay Caption
Notice that the singular noun árbol has a graphic accent in the second-to-last syllable (palabra grave). However, when you form the plural, the graphic accent moves to the third-to-last-syllable becoming a proparoxytone word (palabra esdrújula). Similarly, singular nouns like profesor and universidad that are stressed in the last syllable (palabras agudas) become paroxytone words (palabras graves) in the plural form.
- Lápiz (pencil) - Lápices (pencils)
- Raíz (root) - Raíces (roots)
- Voz (voice) - Voces (voices)
Tengo muy buena voz,
I have a very good voice,Play Caption
vuelven esas voces a mi cabeza.
those voices come back to my head.Play Caption
Paroxytone or proparoxytone nouns ending in 's' or 'x' keep the same form in plural. Let's see some examples:
- Cactus (cactus) - Cactus (cactuses/cacti)
- Tórax (thorax) - Tórax (thoraxes/thoraces)
- Análisis (analysis) - Análisis (analyses/tests)
y en un análisis de nuestras debilidades, oportunidades, fortalezas y amenazas.
and an analysis of our weaknesses, opportunities, strengths and threats.Play Caption
para hacerle los análisis de sangre, de heces,
to do the blood tests, stool (tests),
Caption 54, Santuario para burros Santuario - Part 1Play Caption
That's it for now. We hope these rules help you to use the plural in Spanish. If you feel like practicing a little bit more, take 20 nouns and try to form their plural forms. And of course, don’t forget to send us your feedback and suggestions.