How a word, phrase, or concept is used in the Spanish language.

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7
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3answers
4k views

“Maje” (or “mae”) in Nicaraguan Spanish

What does the word "maje" (pronounced "mae") mean in Nicaraguan Spanish? Could the word be considered offensive, and, if so, in what contexts is it appropriate to use?
7
votes
1answer
214 views

Is “mas sin embargo” a pleonasm?

I've seen and heard "mas sin embargo". My questions are: Is it correct to use "mas sin embargo"? Is it a pleonasm? Example: Mario tiene que hacer mucha tarea, mas sin embargo está jugando. ...
7
votes
3answers
1k views

Choosing between “Mirar” and “Ver”

What is the real difference between "Ver" and "Mirar". They are quite close in meaning but what are the differences between them? What are the rules to know whether we should choose one or the other?
7
votes
1answer
1k views

“Echar” vs “tirar” vs “lanzar” vs “arrojar” vs “disparar” (to throw)

The basic meaning of them all as I understand it is: To throw Disparar seems to pertain exclusively to shooting or throwing something for the sole purpose of harming (maybe to shoot is the best ...
7
votes
2answers
3k views

Difference between “favor de” and “por favor”

What's the difference between "favor de" and "por favor"?. Examples: Favor de lavarse las manos después de ir al baño. Por favor lávese las manos después de ir al baño. Hazme favor de ...
7
votes
1answer
1k views

Difference between “tener que …” and “necesitar …”?

If I have to say something like I gotta leave in Spanish, I'd use a phrase like: Tengo que irme But I realize that I could also say: Necesito irme What is the difference? You would ...
7
votes
1answer
445 views

Usage of the compound preposition “para con”

Wikipedia mentions that para con is rarely used, but I hear it often enough to warrant this question. On the other hand, the Wikipedia article references the Diccionario panhispánico de dudas with ...
7
votes
1answer
148 views

“Haber de” y futuridad

La entrada de "haber" en lo "Diccionario panhispánico de dudas" incluye este trozo: a) haber de + infinitivo. En el español general, esta perífrasis denota obligación, conveniencia o necesidad ...
6
votes
2answers
621 views

When is “al” not interchangeable with “a el”?

This is a clear case where "al" cannot be replaced with "a el": Al mirarlo, sonrió. Are there any other cases?
6
votes
6answers
8k 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 ...
6
votes
2answers
214 views

What is the difference between requerir and exigir?

I believe that they both mean to "require." But do they refer to different "degrees" (urgencies) or types of requirments? Can they be used interchangeably or is one more suitable in some contexts and ...
6
votes
5answers
1k views

Definition of escuela and colegio

Spanish has two generic words for school: escuela and colegio. I have heard different explanations for what phases of schooling each word refers to. For example, I've been told that colegio refers ...
6
votes
3answers
2k views

¿Desuscripción? ¿Desuscribir?

En cualquier website en inglés frecuentemente podemos encontrar un botón o enlace "unsuscribe", para dar de baja una suscripción. ¿Cómo traducir esto en español en una sola palabra? Existen ...
6
votes
3answers
13k views

¿Se debe decir jefe o jefa al referirse a una persona de sexo femenino?

Mi jefe en el trabajo es una mujer. ¿Cómo es la forma correcta de referirse a un jefe que es mujer? ¿jefe o jefa?. Algunos compañeros de trabajo le dicen jefa, yo le digo por su nombre sin embargo ...
6
votes
3answers
377 views

Regional use of “genial”

What parts of the Spanish-speaking world regularly use the word genial? Is it only encountered in Spain, or is it common in other regions as well? Edit: It seems like it's more widespread than I ...
6
votes
2answers
2k views

¿“Más bueno” es incorrecto, correcto bajo ciertas circunstancias o totalmente correcto pero poco usado?

En portugués brasileño mais grande (más grande) es aparentemente un error garrafal, solo bajo ciertas circunstancias no lo es, pero nadie me da una respuesta del porque. Hasta ahora mi conclusión es ...
6
votes
3answers
1k views

What is the difference between “ser casado” and “estar casado”?

I have read that both ser and estar can be used with casado to give different connotations to the phrase "to be married." What exactly are the differences, and when would you use each verb?
6
votes
7answers
590 views

Uso de “concernidos”

Hoy he escuchado la siguiente frase: "Estamos muy concernidos por..." Es la primera vez que escucho el verbo concernir usado y conjugado de esta manera, siempre se usa como "me/nos concierne..." ...
6
votes
3answers
447 views

feliz vs. alegre vs. dichoso

I recently heard dichoso used to mean feliz. Looking up dichoso in a dictionary shows it means "happy" (or "blessed"). What is the difference between dichoso, feliz, and alegre to mean "happy"? Are ...
6
votes
2answers
2k views

Differences betwen “ahí”, “allí”, y “allá”

I am confused with the uses of "ahí", "allí" and "allá". It seems they are used according to different situations. Could you please tell me what are the differences and provide some examples? Thanks!
6
votes
3answers
377 views

What's the difference between “estar ansioso de” and “estar ansioso por”?

I know that both 'estar ansioso de' and 'estar ansioso por' mean to be excited for something or looking forward to it, but how do I decide which one to use? Do the two have slightly different ...
6
votes
1answer
147 views

What's the function of “lo” in “lo que”?

Examples: Lo que pasa es que el niño no fue a la escuela porque se fracturo el tobillo. Lo que quiere es una computadora para hacer sus tareas. Lo que dice es mentira. Lo que no ...
6
votes
1answer
2k views

What is the meaning of “que” and “cual” without an accent mark?

What does "que" and "cual" mean without an accent mark? How do they compare when to each other? How do they compare to their accent-marked form?
6
votes
2answers
642 views

Article usage before country names

I have heard several countries expressed in Spanish with a definite article before the country name (e.g. los Estados Unidos, la Argentina, la India). Is there a rule for when this occurs and when it ...
6
votes
3answers
2k views

Age range of niño, chico, muchacho, joven, etc

Spanish has several words for referring to children: niño/niña chico/chica muchacho/muchacha joven Some dialects add others like chavo or chavalo. What are the approximate age ranges these words ...
6
votes
2answers
223 views

Regional differences between escuchar and oír

In school I learned that escuchar was for the English "to listen to" and oír was "to hear." In Central America, however, I frequently heard escuchar being used for "to hear" (e.g. No te escucho ...
6
votes
1answer
99 views

Word : se quedaban

Please read the below sentence: Ya que los mayores iban a el campo a trabajar, los niños se quedaban y jugaban juntos. In English it means: Since the older went to work in the field, the ...
6
votes
3answers
479 views

What is the difference between different ways of expressing desire and intention?

I hear a lot of different ways to express the idea of wanting something or wanting to do something. What is the difference between them? Yo quiero (algo o hacer algo o que pase algo) Me gustaría ... ...
6
votes
4answers
1k views

Uso invertido de palabras cariñosas e insultos

En mi tierra es bastante normal, en el uso coloquial, encontrar invertido el uso de las palabras cariñosas y los insultos: "Mira, cariño, una cosa te voy a decir..." -dicho a una persona con la que ...
6
votes
2answers
224 views

Difference between “igual” and “como”

I was listening to Carlos Varela's "Una Palabra" and noticed sometimes he uses "igual" for "like" and sometimes "como". I am knowing that "igual" is used more similarities, but what separates it from ...
5
votes
5answers
1k views

What does “apañao” mean?

¿Qué significa "apañao"? Aparentemente se usa exclusivamente en la región de Andalucía. Estaba hablando con alguien y dijo esa palabra pero no la pudo traducir. ¿Alguien sabe su significado y uso? ...
5
votes
3answers
289 views

Correct usage of debieras and deberías

Español ¿Cuándo es correcto usar deberías o debieras? (significado y uso). English When is it correct to use deberías or debieras? (meaning and uses)
5
votes
5answers
306 views

Uses of “se”: “se rompió” o “rompió”

He leído las siguientes oraciones. Mi hermano menor se rompió la mayoría de vasos. Mi hermano menor rompió la mayoría de vasos. Dice que la segunda frase es correcta. ¿Pero por qué? Su ...
5
votes
4answers
151 views

Usage of the word acullá

WordReference translates acullá as "yonder." Is this a word that was only used in the past, or is it still used in modern Spanish today? If so, what regions does it appear in and how is it used?
5
votes
4answers
222 views

¿Para referirse a un jaguar cuál palabra es la correcta jaguar o yaguar?

Existen dos formas para referirse a un jaguar: jaguar yaguar ¿Cuál es la palabra correcta?
5
votes
3answers
856 views

¿Que significan esas palabras en el español de Colombia?

Me quedé asombrado al leer el libro Buscando dentro del Caos escrito por César Pellicer, particularmente desde sus frases abundantes en palabras totalmente misteriosas para mí. Por ejemplo: ...
5
votes
2answers
13k views

Significado de “presente” en una carta. ¿Se escribe dos puntos después del destinatario?

Por ejemplo, suelo encontrar los encabezados de las cartas como sigue: Cierta ciudad, Cierto país, ...
5
votes
3answers
255 views

Do mi and mío have different connotations?

I usually use the possessives mi and mío interchangeably. For example: Esta es la casa mía. Esta es mi casa. However, do the two have different connotations? (e.g. is one more formal ...
5
votes
2answers
2k views

forever: por siempre vs. para siempre

I have seen "forever" translated as both por siempre and para siempre. What is the difference? Are there contexts where you must use one or the other?
5
votes
2answers
621 views

Word usage: difference between “bailar” and “danzar”

Is there any difference between "bailar" and "danzar"?
5
votes
3answers
231 views

“Earthquake”: When to use “temblor” and “terremoto”

When referring to an earthquake, are temblor and terremoto perfect synonyms? Are there any differences?
5
votes
3answers
598 views

Plátano and banana, geographical differences?

I don't really speak Spanish, but I do know a few words and phrases here and there, and enjoy furthering what little knowledge I have. So, today I saw, in a Swedish newspaper, a reference to plantains ...
5
votes
1answer
388 views

Gusto variant of the verb gustar

When I thought I finally had it figured out... I was confronted with the following phrase which obviously must mean: I liked the story of your friend. Which for me logically translates to. ...
5
votes
2answers
225 views

Matutino and Vespertino

I see matutino and vespertino, meaning morning and afternoon, used to describe parts of the daily schedule in schools and church. They sound very formal. Are there more words like them to describe ...
5
votes
4answers
404 views

Si británico se refiere a lo natural del Reino Unido, ¿cuál es el gentilicio para lo estrictamente de Gran Bretaña?

Dice la RAE.es: británico, ca. (Del lat. Britannĭcus). adj. Perteneciente o relativo a la antigua Britania, sur de la Gran Bretaña. adj. Natural del Reino Unido de Gran Bretaña e Irlanda ...
5
votes
4answers
4k views

¿Qué significa “a poco”?

¿Qué significa la expresión "a poco" usada en México? Por ejemplo: ¿A poco? ¿A poco sí?/¿A poco no? ¿A poco no has hecho la tarea?
5
votes
3answers
780 views

añorar vs extrañar

I was wondering if there were any difference between these two verbs, especially in their usual respective contexts. Bonus point for pointing out differences between Argentina and Spain as well (if ...
5
votes
4answers
159 views

How do you say “senior agent” in spanish?

As in more "experienced" customer service agent
5
votes
1answer
2k views

What does “Puesto que…” mean?

¿Qué significa la frase Puesto que en la siguiente oración? Puesto que los estudiantes han estado construyendo gráficas desde el preescolar, ellos rápidamente responden “¡hacer una gráfica!” ...
5
votes
6answers
650 views

Why do you use “al” before a verb?

I understand that al is a combination of a + el when used before a noun, however in what situations would you use it in front of a verb, for instance 'Al llegar al tercer semaforo...'