Determining the best possible word to express a concept among several choices.

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2
votes
4answers
224 views

Why does “Se habla español” translate to “We speak Spanish”?

I see on stores that they have a sign that says Se habla español. From first glance I would think that it is saying "It speaks Spanish". How is it unambiguous that it is saying "We speak Spanish"? I ...
9
votes
5answers
12k views

Is there a difference between “claro” and “por supuesto”?

Both "claro" (or "claro que sí") and "por supuesto" appear to be used to say 'of course' in one way or another. Are there any differences in how they are used? Is one formal and the other informal? ...
6
votes
5answers
4k views

Is there a trick to remembering 'llevar' and 'traer'?

After years of living in a Spanish-speaking country, and speaking mostly only Spanish all day, I still struggle with 'llevar' and 'traer'. The rules are clear and all, but it is just very difficult to ...
6
votes
5answers
2k views

How can we say “I'm sorry” apart from “lo siento”?

So far the only way I know to say "I'm sorry" is "lo siento." However, this gets repetitive rather quickly, and sometimes I'm looking for a stronger form of an apology. What other ways are there to ...
1
vote
2answers
87 views

When should one use “para” for the English word “to”?

This is an extension of the question What is the difference between using "de" and "que" for the English word "to"? Consider the sentence "You have one minute to ...
8
votes
4answers
1k views

Armpit: sobaco vs. axila

"Armpit" in English can be translated as either sobaco or axila in Spanish. Is each term used in different regions, or are they both used across the Spanish-speaking world? What is the difference, or ...
1
vote
4answers
100 views

gustar: “I like the cat” vs “The cat likes me”

I put this in the google translate page: the cat likes me i like the cat I get back the translation: el gato me gusta me gusta el gato which doesn't look right at all, and sure enough it gets ...
10
votes
4answers
8k views

How do you differentiate between walnuts and pecans in Spanish?

It recently occurred to me that the Spanish nuez can be translated to English as both "walnut" and "pecan." Is the same word really used for both types of nuts? How would you specify which nut you're ...
4
votes
2answers
110 views

“Lo peor ya ha pasado” - Why is “Lo” used?

The sentence translates to The worse has already passed. Why is lo used instead of el? When am I supposed to use one over the other?
5
votes
1answer
277 views

“Ella es nuestra madre” - Why is “nuestra” feminine?

Why is nuestra feminine if we do not know the gender of the people the speaker is referring?
7
votes
12answers
6k views

How would you translate the word “badass” to Spanish?

I was thinking maybe of "cabrón" or "chingon" ; however I think those two sound too Mexican specific. Does anybody know a better and less region specific equivalent?
2
votes
4answers
169 views

How do you say “muscle fever” in Spanish?

I've heard only "envaramiento", so people say in Spanish Estoy envarado por haber nadado ayer. Wikipedia says it's said agujetas, which I've never heard. Is there another non-medical term for ...
0
votes
1answer
73 views

What is “él” for in “Estoy aquí porque me ha enviado él”?

I found this sentence which makes sense except for the last word él: Estoy aquí porque me ha enviado él. I am here because he has sent me. What is the él doing here? At first when I read it I ...
2
votes
1answer
85 views

Alternativas menos negativas a “desafortunadamente”

Estoy escribiendo un correo orientado a negocios. Quiero decir "Desafortunadamente, blah blah blah, porque bleh bleh bleh", con el objetivo de dar a conocer un hecho que no es beneficioso para la otra ...
7
votes
2answers
637 views

What's the plural of “suéter”?

What's the plural of "suéter"? In Mexico, most of the times is called "sueters". Is it "sueters" or "suéteres"?
3
votes
3answers
95 views

What's the difference between “guardar” and “mantener”?

What's the difference between "guardar" and "mantener"? The English I want to translate is "Help us to keep a good sense of humor." The verb to translate is "keep".
0
votes
4answers
83 views

Translating a prayer [closed]

I want to translate the following prayer from English: "Dear Lord, I pray that the Holy Spirit be with all of us, guide us in our studies and give us perseverance, help us to have patience with ...
0
votes
3answers
87 views

What is the difference between “guiar” and “dirigir”? [closed]

What is the difference between "guiar" and "dirigir"? The translation from the English that I want is "guide us in our studies." Should I use guiar or dirigir?
7
votes
3answers
5k views

Understanding ya vs. todavía vs. aún

English speakers learning Spanish have a hard time understanding the similarities and differences between ya, todavía, and aún (or aun). They don't perfectly match up with the similar English words ...
1
vote
1answer
88 views

Duda sobre “escuálido” en el pronunciamiento de un Ministro

Viendo este pronunciamiento del Ministro de Educación de Venezuela http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BKW8nloZAqQ en el 00:18 el dice estas palabras no es que vamos a sacar la gente de la pobreza, ...
5
votes
1answer
31k views

¿Cuál es la palabra correcta, “membresía” o “membrecía”?

Cual es la forma correcta de escribir la siguiente palabra: MEMBRESÍA o MEMBRECÍA, según las normas de la Real Academia de la Lengua Española para el año actual (2013). Por favor incluir referencias ...
7
votes
3answers
6k views

Are there any differences between “de nada” and “por nada”?

Most of the time in all the Spanish speaking countries I've been in I've heard de nada as the reply to gracias or the equivalent of English you're welcome etc. But after a while I became conscious ...
13
votes
3answers
233 views

“My kind of ___” in Spanish

Español He estado buscando una manera de decir "My kind of _" en español. O una frase equivalente (que creo que es más adecuado y preferible). Como la manera que un estadounidense diría: "this is my ...
8
votes
3answers
989 views

How to translate 'to become?' (hacerse, ponerse, convertirse en, etc.)

I've heard several different words used for 'to become' in Spanish. Obviously sometimes there are specific verbs to use, like 'enfadarse' means to become angry, but often you need to use a verb that ...
0
votes
4answers
214 views
5
votes
4answers
5k views

¿Cuál es la diferencia entre “formación” y “capacitación”?

Estoy escribiendo con mi amiga de Argentina, y ella me habló de su nuevo trabajo. Ella dijo que tenía que tomar un curso de capacitación, pero veo la palabra "formación" en lugar a veces. ¿Cuál es ...
0
votes
3answers
89 views

Is it “Tú juegas como el” or “Tú juegas como él”? [closed]

The sentence says "You play as him" but all of the choices have the last word as el instead of él. I believe "Tú juegas como él" to be the right choice, is that correct?
3
votes
4answers
211 views

What is the difference between “tuyo” and “suyo”?

I see them both being used to represent possession. For example: El gato es suyo and El gato es tuyo. Are these sentences the same? What is the difference between these words?
1
vote
5answers
190 views

“¿De qué color es la camisa?” - What is “De” for?

It looks like this sentence can be formed without the "De" so what is it for?
3
votes
4answers
205 views
1
vote
4answers
100 views

Are the phrases “jarabe para la tos” or “antibióticos” colloquially used to mean other types of medicine?

My spanish textbook says that if you have a fever, you should take "jarabe para la tos". It also recommends "antibióticos" as a remedy for "la gripe". The glossary translates these phrases as "cough ...
19
votes
6answers
4k views

¿Cuál es la diferencia entre tú, usted, y vos?

Ya he oido las palabras tú, usted, y vos, pero la traducción de todas esas palabras a Inglés es la misma: you. ¿Cuándo es mejor usar tú o vos en vez de usted, o viceversa?
1
vote
2answers
3k views

Translation of “What's wrong?”

What is the most natural translation of the English phrase, "What's wrong?" (i.e. what you would ask a person who appears sad or hurt or withdrawn)? ¿Qué te pasó? would be one option, but that seems ...
0
votes
3answers
116 views

How do you say 'mind you' in Spanish?

Ojo, este cuarto es no lugar para charlar. This room is not a place for talk. Any alternatives for it?
12
votes
4answers
586 views

Translation of “bug” to Spanish

What is the best way to translate "bug", as in a misfeature of a computer program or device? Google translate offers a few options, none of which quite seem to fit, except the term itself: bug ...
4
votes
2answers
192 views

¿Cuándo usar coste o costo?

Ambas tienen un significado parecido, ¿cuándo se debe usar una o la otra? coste 2 . m. Gasto realizado para la obtención o adquisición de una cosa o de un servicio. costo 1 . m. ...
2
votes
1answer
63 views

Difference and usage on “teléfono” and “telefónica”

Es "número de teléfono" pero "tarjeta telefónica". ¿Cómo puedo decidir qué forma es (más) correcta? It's "Número de teléfono", but "Tarjeta telefónica". How can I tell which word is more ...
8
votes
7answers
6k views

Is there a difference between cilantro and culantro in Spanish?

I've seen the American English "cilantro" (British English "coriander") translated into Spanish as both cilantro and culantro. What is the difference? Are they synonyms used interchangeably, or is the ...
0
votes
1answer
60 views

Usage of pushar and empujar

I would like to know if pushar is also used in Spain and is it only used by teenagers ?
3
votes
4answers
190 views

Geographical distribution and use of “Enhorabuena”

I consider myself a near-fluent Spanish speaker, having learned it primarly in Mexico. I have never heard the term "Enhorabuena" used there; of course, I realize that this doesn't mean that it isn't ...
0
votes
1answer
75 views

Is the spanish 'YA' synonymous of 'already' and 'yet' without exceptions? [closed]

'Ya estas alli' means 'you are already there' But: 'Ya estas alli?' means 'Are you there yet? Another example: It would be wrong to say 'Ya no' when trying to mean 'Not yet; The translation of ...
6
votes
2answers
2k views

Choosing between 'sobre' and 'acerca de'

Is there a significant difference between "sobre" and "acerca de", when the intent is to describe the topic of something? Where is "acerca de" a better choice than "sobre", and vice-versa?
0
votes
3answers
217 views

What is the best way to refer to those of Spanish descent or language?

In English there are several ways to refer to people who speak Spanish or are from a Spanish-speaking country: Hispanic, Latin, Latino, Chicano, Spanish-speaking, etc. What equivalent terms exist in ...
4
votes
1answer
183 views

Do “alborada”, “amanecer”, and “madrugada” refer to the same thing?

In English we have the two words "dawn" and "sunrise". But in Spanish there are three words, "alborada", "amanecer", and "madrugada". Do the three Spanish words refer to the same thing? Or is one ...
5
votes
2answers
173 views

Different words for “hole”

Spanish has several words that could be translated "hole" in English: hoyo agujero hueco bache boquete brecha madriguera What are the differences between these words? In what situations can each ...
2
votes
2answers
183 views

How to ask if a restaurant/store has something

In English, I may ask, "do you have tea?" to a waiter or waitress. This "you" may be plural since asking, "do you all (y'all) have tea?" makes sense, but I guess it could also be singular (more along ...
18
votes
6answers
8k views

When to use ya and todavía

What are the rules for when to use ya and todavía? (Or ya no and todavía no)? In many contexts, ya translates to yet or already, and todavía translates to still, but this simple understanding has ...
9
votes
4answers
3k views

“ir a «infinitive»” vs. future tense

There are two ways to indicate a future action, ir a «infinitive» and the future tense. How do I decide which to use when? Is one form more common when spoken or in writing? Is there a regional ...
2
votes
2answers
113 views

Translation of “in a pickle” and related phrases

In English there are several idioms or phrases that describe being in the midst of a very difficult situation: in a pickle in a quandary in a predicament in between a rock and a hard place How ...
3
votes
3answers
7k views

Responding to an apology (no problem, don't worry about it, etc.)

What are the common ways of responding to an apology? In English, if someone says "Sorry I didn't/couldn't do (whatever)" (or simply bumps into you accidentally and says "sorry") we'd say things like: ...