cerca de – close to
lejos de – far from
delante de – in front of
detrás de – behind
debajo de – below
encima de – on top of
al lado de – alongside of
entre – between, among
al este/oestenorte/sur de – to the east/west/north/south of
In Spanish, the pronouns that serve as object of prepositions are identical to the subject pronouns, … [ Read more ]
Note that telephone numbers in many Hispanic countries are written and said slightly differently than in the United States. Here is one model for asking for and giving phone numbers.
El: ¿Cual es tu (número de) telefono?
E2: Es el cuatro, treinta y tres, veintiocho, veintiuno.
Many English verbs that describe parts of one’s daily routine–to get up, to take a bath, and so on–are expressed in Spanish with a reflexive construction: I take a bath — me baño (literally, I bathe myself). In this section you will learn to use reflexive pronouns, as well as other verbs that are used reflexively, to talk about your daily routine.
In Spanish, … [ Read more ]
As you have probably noticed, adjectives do not always precede the noun in Spanish as they do in English. Note the following rules for adjective placement.
- Adjectives of quantity like numbers, precede the noun, as do the interrogatives
¿cuanto/a? and ¿cuantos/as?.
Hay muchas sillas y dos escritorios. – There are many chairs and two desks.
… [ Read more ]
with adjectives or adverbs
más/menos ____ que
tan ____ como
más/menos ____ que
tanto/a/os/as ____ como
____ más/menos que
____ tanto como
Regular Comparisons of Adjectives
The comparative (el comparativo) of most English adjectives is formed by using the adverbs more or less (more intelligent, … [ Read more ]
The demonstrative adjective this/these has four forms in Spanish. Learn to recognize them when you see them.
este coche – this car
estos coches – these cars
esta casa – this house
estas casas – these houses
You have already seen the neuter demonstrative esto. It refers to something that is as yet unidentified: ¿Que es esto?
this – este libro
that – ese libro, aquel libro alli
these – estos libros
those – esos libros, aquellos libros alli
Demonstrative adjectives (los adjetivos demostrativos) are used to point out or indicate a specific noun or nouns. In Spanish, demonstrative adjectives precede the nouns they modify. They also agree in number and gender with the nouns.
… [ Read more ]
You already know that cognates are words that are similar in form and meaning from one language to another: for example, English poet and Spanish poeta. The endings of many Spanish words correspond to English word endings according to fixed patterns. Learning to recognize these patterns will increase the number of close and not-so-close cognates that you can recognize.
-dad ⇒ -ly
-mente ⇒ … [ Read more ]
To talk about all aspects of the past in Spanish, you need to know how to use two simple tenses (tenses formed without an auxiliary or “helping” verb): the preterite and the imperfect.
The preterite (el pretérito) has several equivalents in English. For example, hablé can mean I spoke or I did speak. The preterite is used to report finished, completed actions or states … [ Read more ]
Spanish has two r sounds, one of which is called a flap, the other a trill. The rapid pronunciation of tt and dd in the English words Betty and ladder produces a sound similar to the Spanish flap r: the tongue touches the alveolar ridge (behind the upper teeth) once. Although English has no trill, when people imitate a motor, they often produce the Spanish … [ Read more ]
Estar is used with adjectives to express temporary conditions or observations that are true at a given moment but that do not describe inherent qualities of the noun. The following adjectives are generally used with estar. Some of them are cognates.
abierto/a – open
aburrido/a – bored
cansado/a – tired
cerrado/a – closed
contento/a – happy
desordenado/a – messy
enfermo/a – sick, ill
furioso/a … [ Read more ]
Use ¿qué? to mean what? when you are asking for a definition or an explanation. Use ¿cual? To mean what? in all other circumstances.
Que without an accent mark means that or which.
Nouns that refer to male beings and most nouns that end in -o are masculine (masculino) in gender: hombre, libro.
Nouns that refer to female beings and most nouns that … [ Read more ]
Ir + a + infinitive is used to describe actions or events in the near future
Van a llegar esta noche. – They’re going to arrive tonight.
Voy a ir de compras esta tarde. – I’m going to go shopping this afternoon.
Although all Spanish words of more than one syllable have a stressed vowel, most words do not have a written accent mark. Most words have the spoken stress exactly where native speakers of Spanish would predict it. These two simple rules tell you which syllable is accented when a word does not have a written accent.
- Words that end in a vowel, -n,
… [ Read more ]
Prepositions express relationships in time and space. Some common prepositions include a, con, de, en, para, and por. Here are some prepositions that express time relationships:
antes de – before
después de – after
durante – during
hasta – until
The infinitive is the only verb form that can follow a preposition in Spanish.
¿Adónde vas después de estudiar? Where … [ Read more ]