parar de & começar a

What’s so special about the verbs PARAR & COMEÇAR? For starters you’ve probably noticed that you always have to treat these verbs a little differently. For example, you can’t say “I stopped eating sugar” like this: eu parei comer açucar (NÃO!) — you need to include a de like this: I stopped eating sugar >…

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Inviting Yourself

How do you say something like, I’d like to go with you sometime or ask, Can we play with you guys? In Portuguese there are several key verbs that make it easy and clear that you’d like to do something – to participate. Portuguese invitational verbs participar: to participate poder: to be able to, can…

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a partir de

There are several verbs that when used in specific ways open the door to new possibilities. Let’s look at the combination, A partir de and how this one can be used. The Portuguese verb PARTIR means: to leave, depart, go away. a partir de When combined like this, partir takes on the meaning: starting from…

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Saying: to run into, to bump into

Why is this so hard to say? to run into, to bump into: Saying it in Portuguese. When you’re in Brazil it’s normal to spend much more time on foot, walking the streets. Even though automobiles inundate life as here, the infrastructure of most cities just can’t handle them and as a result, there are…

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Chegou a hora – in Portuguese

Chegou a hora – in Portuguese means of course: the time has arrived, the time has come, or simply, it’s time. Seems so simple, right. But how would you say something like: “when the time comes to…” or, “please, be on time –? Simple Use: It’s time to work. > Chegou a hora de trabalhar….

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Portuguese ~or verbs

Is there no end to the suffering? It’s not enough that we have to learn to conjugate 3 different verb types (the ar, ei & ir endings). There is yet another group: the Portuguese ~or verbs! Sim, e não. The good news is, there are only a few of these actually used and: their conjugations…

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Dia Internacional do Samba

We all have our own unsolved mysteries about SAMBA, right? Do you really have to go to a samba school to learn samba? Is there some store where you buy those outfits? Can men samba too? Does it mean you’re gay if you do? It’s just like salsa – but with less clothing? It just…

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Bêbado

There’s this perception that Brazilians enjoy a drink. Verdade ou mito? VERDADE. It’s the weather. Imagine if all the skanky bars in your town were open air, tables spilling out onto the sidewalk where you could instantly see smiling people with cold drinks. I bet you’d stop by at least once in a while. That’s…

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melhor and melhorar

Most verbs have various related incarnations as nouns, adjectives, adverbs etc. MELHOR and MELHORAR are super-used words/verbs but also causes big confusion – I think just because these are (1) hard to pronounce, and (2) have so many similar sounding variations. Melhor and melhorar can be used in different ways to express: improve, improvement, improving,…

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Portuguese verb DAR – 7 ways to use it

We’ve gotten several requests to explain and show how the portuguese verb dar can be used. This is one of those verbs like ficar or, pegar that can change their meaning depending on the context. I remember feeling “deceived” and a bit mad when it dawned on me that people were using verbs that I…

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Não dá. Eu odeio!

Eduardo Não dá, não dá! Não entendo nada! Nem física, nem literatura e nem gramática. Eu odeio química! Química! Por que que eu preciso aprender isso? Ana Calma filho. Sei que não é fácil. Você tem que ter calmo e estudar muito. Não dá. This is a great way to start a sentence. Literally no…

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Qualquer dúvida estou à disposição.

If you’ve ever heard this and wondered what it really means, PARABÉNS – your Portuguese is pretty advanced. Let’s break this expression down. You will hear it in business situations, or whenever someone is trying to help you out. Qualquer dúvida estou à disposição basically means, Feel free to ask any questions or, I’m available…

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Como você anda? (ANDAR in Portuguese)

Probably one of the most common phrases in Brazilian Portuguese, it means, ‘How have you been?’ But how does this work? ANDAR in Portuguese is one of those verbs that can simplify the language. We all know that Como você está? or, Como você vai? are the proper ways to ask how are you? — CORRETO….

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SE FERRAR in Portuguese

Two people asked about this expression (it’s just a verb) this week so I think it’s time to do a post and explain. Se ferrar (a reflexive verb) translates to: to spike, to savage, to brand (with a hot iron), to bite (savagely!!!) ETC. It’s always some bad, bad situation: SE FERRAR And it’s usually…

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Sem Noção: Moto Lotada

This clip caught my attention. It’s a soft news piece. Except for the intro it’s spoken clearly and not too fast. The vocabulary is really core also. Once you get past the intro it’s perfect for training your ear (intermediate-advanced level). We use a lot of video (quase 100%) in our course, but we generally…

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