acabar de – in Portuguese

acabar-de

I couldn't believe how hard it was to say, "I just got home" or, "They just arrived" -- I tried to use or, somente for just. Then I would say something like, I soon got home or, I now arrived home. Crazy difficult. Then I discovered ACABAR DE.

ACABAR + de + VERB = to have just done something. The second verb is always in the infinitive (unconjugated). Acabar is in the past tense.

Translating the first clip above:

Mom, I just finished waking up.
The just is included because when you use ACABAR + de, you really are saying that you JUST NOW finished doing something. It always takes on this meaning. Always.

I just (now) finished working. » Eu acabei de trabalhar.

acabar de ~ the Magic Formula

We are using plain old ACABAR (to finish, to end) and placing de + any verb in it's infinitive (unconjugated) form after it. Like this:

I just got home. » Eu acabei de chegar em casa.
She just went out. » Ela acabou de sair.
We just finished coffee. » Acabamos de tomar cafe.

Just as it does with other verbs you've seen. And here.

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Eu parei de fumar. = I stopped smoking.
Ela melhorou de jogar. = She's going to going to improve playing.
Mãe eu acabei de acordar. = Mom, I finished waking up.

More examples using acabar de

I just got home. » Eu acabei de chegar em casa.
I just had dinner. » Eu acabei de jantar.
She just went out. » Ela acabou de sair.
We just arrived. » Acabamos de chegar.

Getting Fancy with ACABAR de

And you can get pretty advanced and say something like,

I had just gotten home when... » Eu tive acabado de chegar em casa quando...
I would always just arrive home when... » Eu sempre acabava de chegar em casa quando...

Very advanced.