Portuguese Articles: the The

The first thing that struck me as wrong with the use of o and a for THE. One letter? I really wanted at least an el or, la. Portuguese Articles (called: definite articles) are actually super-practical. Two immediate and big payoffs: (1) You can use the o and a as it! You can also combine…

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the Preterit Indicative ~ar verbs

The Preterit Indicative is “the simple past tense” Ready to move on the past tenses? Start here, with the Preterit Indicative. I call it the simple past because it’s the clearest, simplest verb tense (*a verb tense describes a time that something happened.) in Portuguese. Hang around here a bit and you will meet the…

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the Portuguese infinitive

In English, the infinitive form is just to + the verb: to dance, to kiss, to spend… I’m just going to sit here until this all makes good sense. The Portuguese infinitive is just the verb itself: falar comer dormir There’s no need to add a to. Every verb is born in its infinitive beauty….

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gostar

GOSTAR (complete conjugation) is one of those verbs that you will use all the time. Unless you don’t like anything 馃檨 But then you will have to say. “Eu n茫o gosto…” because it’s just not cool to use the word hate (ODIAR) except very rarely. Gostar is used differently than most any other verb in…

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Portuguese Contractions

There are 4 important Portuguese contractions that you need to know. This is one of the hardest things for beginners to get the hang of. It took me years to feel confident using contractions. I think that if gender weren’t involved they would be easy to pick up. That said, the contractions used in Portuguese…

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Portuguese possessive pronouns

Mine, Yours, His & Hers The words that we use to convey POSSESSION are pretty simple because all objects are treated as gender-neutral. In Portuguese of course, there are always two options: the masculine and the feminine. These are called possessive pronouns and they are going to test the limits of your patience until you…

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the Present Subjunctive

Using the Present Subjunctive Portuguese uses the Subjunctive mood to indicate something is uncertain to happen or to have occurred. There are 3 different degrees of uncertainty: (1) extremely unlikely, (2) plausible, (3) likely. The Present Subjunctive is used for case (2): actions that are plausible, yet have not yet occurred. Use this tense to talk…

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the Imperfect Indicative

In Portuguese, there are several ways to refer to something that happened in the past, each with varying shades of meaning. Verb tenses! The Past Imperfect – officially called the Imperfect Indicative (o Pret茅rito Imperfeito), is used when talking about continuous or ongoing action in the past. Something that used to occur or, would always occur….

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por acaso & de prop贸sito

por acaso 禄 by chance Sim么nimos 禄 inesperadamente, acidentalmente, casualmente, aleatoriamente, arbitrariamente Exemplo: Encontrei meus primos no festival por acaso. N茫o t铆nhamos combinado nada. 禄 I met my cousins at the festival by chance. We hadn’t arranged anything. de prop贸sito 禄 on purpose Sim么nimos 禄 deliberadamente, intencionalmente Exemplo: O prop贸sito da vida 茅 seguir a…

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The Portuguese JEITO

What is the Portuguese JEITO? It’s just an expression: JEITO = way, as in: let’s find a way. It’s somewhat notorious because Brazil has been known as the place where anything is possible. This comes mostly from the recent past in which one could for example, buy their way into a green card, bribe someone…

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Imperfect Subjunctive + Conditional

In the previous post we talked about this verb tense — the imperfect subjunctive, as well. So many of you have asked to see even more examples of this super-useful grammar trick so: aqui est茫o! (here they are!) the Imperfect Subjunctive is insanely great. Even better with the Conditional! And BTW, only language professors need…

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the Portuguese Subjunctive

The subjunctive mood has been known to break students. Every serious Portuguese student runs straight into it. Some get hurt. Some get scared. But it doesn’t have to be that way. The Portuguese Subjunctive is actually a rose with thorns. It’s a beautiful part of the language that should be embraced and used with style,…

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Qualquer in Portuguese

I’m old enough to remember the lan house. And in Brazil – especially the favelas you can still (it’s 2020) find them! In my early days traveling in Brazil I would always go to the same lan house. I would always go when I knew there would be this one girl working there – but…

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Acabar in Portuguese vs. Acabar de

We’ve written about ACABAR de before — because it’s such a useful combination. When you place a de after acabar, it takes on the meaning of, to have just. ACABAR in Portuguese by itself means: to end, to end-up, to finish. Everyone gets these mixed-up (confundida) ~ That DE makes all the difference! Use ACABAR…

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the Imperfect Subjunctive

Using the Imperfect Subjunctive Portuguese uses the Subjunctive mood to indicate something is uncertain to happen or to have occurred. There are 3 different degrees of uncertainty: (1) extremely unlikely, (2) plausible, (3) likely. The Imperfect Subjunctive is used for case (1): actions that are extremely unlikely to happen or to have happened. If I were…

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Other tenses of TER

Ter in the Future Tense The common way is to use the verb ir as a helper verb (the future tense with ir) Eu vou ter mais tempo amanh茫. > I’m going to have more time tomorrow. Ele vai ter que correr. > He’s going to have to run. Voc锚 vai ter uma namorada nova….

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Advanced forms of TER

Prerequisite Reading: Portuguese verb TER. Superpowers? Sim, TER has superpowers. Though these are considered advanced-level, any ambitious learner can start using them now! Just keep in mind that the conjugation of TER is very irregular. Let’s start with the most used: The Imperative of Ter You will hear these all_the_time: Tenha um bom dia! >…

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Muito or Muita?

Even I struggle to get this straight. The thing that makes this tricky: In Portuguese, we’re constantly reminding you to get your gender straight. And I’m not talking about your sexual preference here n茫o! It’s a constant struggle to keep word gender correct, certo? Muito or Muita? Minha cerveja est谩 gelada. Meu vinho est谩 gelado….

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What kind? in Portuguese.

We Americans are so lazy. We get away with saying so much with so little. I probably use the word, kind a dozen times every day. But in Brazil, there are several more options used to say, What kind? in Portuguese. What kind of cheese do you want? I like all kinds of science fiction…

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parar de & come莽ar a

What’s so special about the verbs PARAR & COME脟AR? 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 a莽ucar (N脙O!) — 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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