Portuguese verb DAR: um bicho de 7 cabeças.
A 7-headed animal. Bicho (slang) = animal.
I get daily requests to explain the Portuguese verb DAR is one of those verbs like FICAR or DEIXAR that can change their meaning depending on the context. These verbs were a great pain to learn because I just wanted to be able to write one meaning on a flashcard and move on...
But every language has these words. They give it life.
dar: to give
|to give||dar (irregular)|
|I give||eu d||ou|
|you/he/she give(s)||você/ele/ela d||á|
The verb DAR can shape-sift
Here are the most-used ways you'll hear DAR used *in addition to the standard meaning: to give. Though there are hundreds of others, they're rare. In order of importance:
(1) dar certo / dar errado
To dar certo is to work out. Literally, to give right. The opposite is não dar certo OU, dar errado. The verb DAR can be in any tense!
(2) Dá para xxx? = Is it possible to do xxx?
Can you fix it?; Is it possible to drive there?; Is he worth kissing... all of these can be expressed with DAR + para.
(3) dar um jeito
The famous Jeitinho Brasileiro is in action here. The meaning is: Make it happen. Literally, to give a way. I think of it as figuring out a way to do something. This also can mean, to injure, hurt.
Oh man, this one can actually have a bunch of different meanings depending on the context. The best example is in our novela, O Retorno here.
(4) dar sorte
To get lucky is to dar sorte. Literally, to give luck. You can use dar in any tense.
(5) dar conta
When you dar conta of something you are giving an account of it - taking responsibility for it, take charge, take notice of.
(6) dar um passeio / rolé
A passeio is a short trip. BTW the often-used slang for passeio is, rolé (ho-lay). There is a pun in there somewhere I think.
(7) dar moleza
Dar moleza can mean to whimp-out, take the lazy way, give-in, flake out and ETC.
The word moleza comes from mole - Maria Mole. It's some kind of marshmallow-like fluffy cake mix.
When a woman dá mole it's often in the context of flirting and making out. Brazil being a bit of a macho culture uses this expression always in the context of a woman being easy (dando mole), rarely a man. When a man dá mole it's usually that he executed something poorly or worse ~ didn't do anything.
More examples of DAR
And there you have it ~ 7 ways to use DAR. That's seven chances to impress your Brazilian friends.