Grammar/ Gramática Alphabet / Alfabeto



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Grammar/ Gramática

  • Alphabet / Alfabeto

  • Vowels / Vocales

  • Diphthong / Diptongo

  • Triphthong / Triptongo

  • Pronunciation Tips/ Consejos para la pronunciación

  • Greetings and Farewells/ Saludos y Despedidas Cultural Notes.

  • Courtesy Forms/ Palabras de Cortesía

  • To Be/ Ser y estar

  • Interrogatives/ Interrogativos

  • Accentuation / Acentuación

  • Gender and Number/ Género y Número

  • Plural / Plural

  • Pronouns / Pronombre

  • Definite Articles / Artículos Definidos

  • Demostrative / Demostrativo

  • Possessive / Posesivo

  • Indefinite Articles / Artículos Indefinidos

  • Neuter Article/ Artículo Neutro

  • Adjective / Adjetivo

  • Agreement of Articles, Adjectives and Nouns / Concordancia de Artículos, Adjetivos y Sustantivos

  • Regular Verb / Verbo Regular

  • Present / Presente

  • Comparative Forms / Comparaciones

  • Conditional Tense / Condicional

  • Future tense / Futuro

  • Contractions / Contracciones

  • Command forms/ Imperativo

  • Negation/ Negación

  • Past / Pasado

  • Prefixes des-, in-, and re-/ Prefijos des-, in- y re-

  • Diminutive/ Disminutivo

  • To Know/ Conocer y saber

  • Gerund/ Gerundio

  • Progressive / Progresivo

  • Reflexive / Reflexivo

  • Prepositions / Preposiciones

  • Difference between Pedir and Preguntar (ask)

  • There is (are) expressions/ Hay

  • Just have done something.../ Acabar de

  • Imperfect Tense/ Imperfecto

  • Irregular verb / Verbo Irregular

  • Subjunctive I / Subjuntivo

  • Passive Voice/ Voz Pasiva

  • Weather Expressions/ Expresiones de clima

  • To Make, do/ Hacer

  • To Have, possess/ Tener

  • To Like/ Gustar

The Alphabet



The gender of letters is feminine, for example, la "a"/ the "a", la "eme"/ the "m".


Letter/letra

Name/nombre

Example/ejemplo

A

a

Andrés

B

be larga o be alta

Beatriz

C

ce

Carlos

CH

che

Pancho

D

de

Darío

E

e

Elena

F

efe

Francisco

G

ge

Gustavo

H (always silent)

ache

Hugo

I

i

Irma

J

jota

Juan

K

ka

Karina

L

ele

Luis

LL

elle

Guillermo

M

eme

Marta

N

ene

Nora

Ñ

eñe

Ñoño

O

o

Oscar

P

pe

Pablo

Q

cu

Quito

R

ere

Rosa

S

ese

Susana

T

te

Tito

U

u

Úrsula

V

ve corta

Vicente

W

doble ve o doble u

Walter

X

equis

Xavier

Y

i griega o ye

Yolanda

Z

zeta

Zulema


SER & ESTAR/ TO BE

Both verbs, ser and estar, are equivalent to the English verb to be; however, they have very specific meanings and are NOT interchangeable. NOTE in the following examples how the meaning of a sentence changes:



  • La Miss Universo es linda./Miss Universe is pretty.

  • La Miss Universo está linda./ Miss Universe looks pretty (at this specific moment).

  • El niño es listo./ The child is smart.

  • El niño está listo./ The child is ready.

  • Mi madre es aburrida./ My mother is boring (she is a boring person).

  • Mi madre está aburrida./ My mother is bored.

  • Mi hijito es vivo./ My little son is smart.

  • Mi hijito está vivo./ My little son is alive.


SER / TO BE

Pronoun

Present

Past

Future

Conditional

yo/ I

soy

fui

seré

sería

tú/ you

eres

fuiste

serás

serías

él, ella, Ud./ he, she, you

es

fue

será

sería

nos./ we

somos

fuimos

seremos

seríamos

vos./you

sois

fuisteis

seréis

seríais

ellos, Uds./ they, you

son

fueron

serán

serían

1. Ser/ to be is used to describe essential or inherent characteristics or qualities:

Basic aspects: color, shape, material of which something is made out of, size, physical characteristics, and personality.

EXAMPLES


  • La nieve es blanca./ The snow is white.

  • La tierra es redonda./ The earth is round.

  • El saco es de lana./ The jacket is wool.

  • Yo soy alta./ I am tall.

  • Mi socio es extrovertido./ My partner is outgoing.

2. Possession.



EXAMPLE

  • El auto es mío./ The car is mine.

3. Relationship.



EXAMPLE

  • Ella es mi prima./ She is my cousin.

4. Profession.



EXAMPLE

  • Son cirujanos plásticos./ They are plastic surgeons.

5. Nationality.



EXAMPLE

  • Soy argentina./ I am Argentine.

6. Origin.



EXAMPLE

  • El interventor es de La Paz./ The auditor is from La Paz.

7. Ser/ to be is used to indicate marital status.



EXAMPLE

  • Ella es divorciada./ She is divorced.

8. Expressions of time and dates.



EXAMPLES

  • Es la una./ It's one o'clock.

  • Hoy es jueves./ Today is Thursday.

9. Events taking place.



EXAMPLE

  • La fiesta es esta noche./ The party is tonight.

10. Passive voice.



EXAMPLE

  • La casa fue incendiada./ The house (was) burned down.

11. Impersonal expressions.



EXAMPLE

  • Es imposible hablar con ellos./ It's impossible talking to them.

12. Noun and adjective complement (A complement completes the sentence by describing or defining the subject).



EXAMPLES

  • Mi suegra es una abuela maravillosa./ My mother-in-law is a wonderful grandma.

  • Ella es Ana./ She is Ana.

  • El compasivo es él./ The compassionate one is he. (Remember that the verb to be is transitory; therefore, he is used instead of him.)


ESTAR / TO BE

Estar is used to express location, transitory aspects, and characteristics that are NOT inherant property of a noun, such as how something/someone looks, feels or tastes at a given moment.

Pronoun

Present

Past

Future

Conditional

yo/ I

estoy

estuve

estaré

estaría

tú/ you

estás

estuviste

estarás

estarías

él, ella, Ud./ he, she, you

está

estuvo

estará

estaría

nos./ we

estamos

estuvimos

estaremos

estaríamos

vos./you

estáis

estuvisteis

estaréis

estaríais

ellos, Uds./ they, you

están

estuvieron

estarán

estarían

1. Location or position of people and things.

EXAMPLES

  • El restaurante está en la esquina./ The restaurant is at the corner.

  • Los inversores estarán en Venezuela./ The investors will be in Venezuela.

2. Transitory, unusual, recently changed or constantly changing state or condition.



EXAMPLES

  • Pablo estuvo enfermo./ Pablo was sick.

  • El café está frío./ The coffee is cold.

3. Results of an action.



EXAMPLE

  • Nuestros problemas estarán resueltos pronto./ Our problems will be solved soon.

4. State or condition of a subject.



EXAMPLE

  • El rehén está vivo./ The hostage is alive.

5. Progressive tenses.



EXAMPLE

  • El lunes estaremos celebrando nuestro triunfo./ On Monday we'll be celebrating our triumph.

6. Weather expressions.



EXAMPLE

  • Está lloviendo./ It's raining.


IDIOMATIC EXPRESSIONS

  • Estar acostumbrado/ to be accustomed to

  • Estar conforme/ to be satisfied, in agreement

  • Estar de acuerdo/ to be in agreement

  • Estar de buen (mal) humor/ to be in a good (bad) mood

  • Estar apurado (a)/ to be in a hurry

  • Estar de vacaciones/ to be on vacation

  • Estar de vuelta/ to be back

  • Estar listo (a)/ to be ready

  • Estar de moda/ to be in fashion

  • Estar de viaje/ to be on a trip

  • Estar embarazada/ to be pregnant

  • Estar de rodillas/ to be kneeling

PREGUNTAS/ QUESTIONS

In Spanish there are 3 ways of asking a question to elicit a yes or no answer, and they are the following:

1. Verb + pronoun ...Unlike English, the auxiliaries do and does are not used.


  • ¿Quieren ustedes aprender español?/ Do you want to learn Spanish?


NOTE: That interrogative questions have an opening (¿) question mark and also a closing one (?).

2. Pronoun + verb...The intonation makes the sentence interrogative.



  • ¿Ustedes quieren aprender español?/ Do you want to learn Spanish?

3. Verb +...+ pronoun. The pronoun goes last.



  • ¿Quieren aprender español ustedes?/ Do you want to learn Spanish?


PALABRAS INTERROGATIVAS/ INTERROGATIVE WORDS

NOTE: These words are ALWAYS graphically accentuated, whether they are used to formulate a direct or indirect question.

  • ¿Qué hora es?/ What time is it? (direct)

  • Dime qué hora es./ Tell me what time it is. (indirect)

¿A qué hora...?

What time...?

¿Dónde?

Where?

¿De dónde?

From where?

¿Por dónde?

Which direction?

¿A dónde?

To where?

¿Cómo?

How?

¿Cuál/-es?

Which one/-s?

¿Cuándo?

When?

¿Cuánto/-a?

How much?

¿Cuántos/-as?

How many?

¿Qué?

What?

¿Para qué?

For what reason?

¿Por qué?

Why?

¿Quién/-es?

Who?

¿A quién?

To whom?

¿Para quién?

For whom

¿De quién/-es?

Whose?

Acentuación/ Accentuation

Spanish words are classified into 4 categories, aguda, grave, esdrújula and sobresdrújula, depending on where the words are stressed.

A written accent indicates where a word is stressed; however, not all words have the written accent. Therefore, the following rules will be helpful.




AGUDA

Agudas are stressed in the last syllable. All words that do not have a written accent and end in a consonant other n or s, the stress is on the last syllable.

EXAMPLES:

azul/ blue

avestruz/ ostrich


Agudas are graphically accentuated only if the words DO end in n, s or a vowel.

EXAMPLES:

ratón/ mouse

interés/ interest

ac/ acne


GRAVE

Graves are stressed in the second to the last (penultimate) syllable. All words that do NOT have a written accent and end in n, s or a vowel, the stress is on the penultimate syllable.

EXAMPLES:

mono/monkey

ave/bird

pato/duck


Graves are graphically accentuated only if the words do NOT end in n, s or a vowels. Note that graves have opposite rules to agudas.

EXAMPLES:

piz/ pencil

dicil/ difficult

útil/useful


ESDRÚJULA

Esdrújulas are stressed in the third from last (antepenultimate) syllable. They are always graphically accentuated.



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