5
votes
1answer
162 views

Usage of “donde la espalda cambia de nombre”

In this answer to this previous question of mine, the answerer used the phrase Antonio se hirió donde la espalda cambia de nombre. as an example of a milder version of Antonio se hirió en ...
5
votes
1answer
984 views

When should you use the preterite or the imperfect to express past time?

There are two ways to express simple past time actions and conditions in Spanish. One is the preterite, Comí tacos. (I ate tacos.) Besé a una chica. (I kissed a girl.) and the other is the ...
5
votes
4answers
708 views

Names of letters “b” and “v”

The letters b and v have several possible names in Spanish. Is there an official, language academy-sponsored name for these letters? If not, what are the most common and standard names?
5
votes
2answers
285 views

Proper spelling of “beisbol”

I had the privilege of attending the 2011 Panamerican Games last month, and went to the brand new baseball stadium in Lagos de Moreno. The stadium said in big letters: Estadio de Beisbol My ...
4
votes
1answer
252 views

Es correcto usar la palabra “Apóstola” para referirse a una mujer que es “Apóstol”?

Quisiera saber si es correcto aplicar el genero femenino a un sustantivo como "apóstol" dejando la palabra como "apóstola" que se entendería es una mujer que actúa como "apóstol". Es similar al caso ...
4
votes
1answer
77 views

Gender agreement with “fin de semana”

Would it be el fin de semana próxima or el fin de semana próximo for next weekend? And how would you say last weekend in Spanish?
4
votes
4answers
154 views

¿En qué paises aplica la acepción anatómica de “pito”?

En el DRAE: Pito m. coloq. pene. Esta acepción es conocida en Argentina, pero por lo que me dijeron, no es universal, ni siquiera en Sudamérica. ¿Alguien sabe a qué países aplica y a ...
4
votes
1answer
183 views

Why is there an interrogative pronoun in this sentence which is not a question?

I've seen the use of interrogative pronouns in ordinary statements, not just questions. For example, from the book "Harry Potter y la piedra filosofal": "Los Dursley se estremecían al pensar qué ...
4
votes
3answers
305 views

¿Cuál es la regla para asignar el género a cantidades numéricas?

Hace unos días pregunté sobre el caso de Millonas. Sé que es un dísparate por decirlo del alguna manera. ¿Cómo lo sé? Por intuición, no sabría explicarlo mas que me suena a un dísparate. En ...
4
votes
1answer
134 views

Millones y Millonas

Viendo un video de Nicolas Maduro presidente de Venezuela el dice: Millones y millonas de Bolivar. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UrXQkPOvI7A en 0:42 ¿Es correcto decir millonas o es un modismo ...
4
votes
2answers
852 views

What does “hace que” mean in this sentence?

¿Qué significa la frase hace que en la siguiente oración? Pienso que el escritor de esta oración quería decir que la profesora manda a sus estudiantes trabajar en grupos. Pero, me parece esta frase ...
4
votes
12answers
2k views

Exception to the Phonetic Rule

As we all know that Spanish is a Phonetic Language, i.e. the way it's written is the way it's pronounced. I am just curious to know if there are any exceptions to this phonetic rule. I mean, when we ...
4
votes
5answers
904 views

Translation of “guilt trip”

How can I translate the concept of a "guilt trip" into Spanish? The Free Dictionary provides this definition: guilt trip n. Informal A usually prolonged feeling of guilt or culpability. ...
4
votes
2answers
150 views

“no” + verb + “nada”

Español ¿Por qué "say nothing" en inglés se traduce como "no habla nada" en español? ¿Por qué hay una extra "no"? Otro ejemplo: "I know nothing" en inglés se traduce "Yo no sé nada" en español. ...
4
votes
3answers
2k views

Las palabras definidas como genero ambiguo como “internet” ¿se deben utilizar con artículo femenino o masculino?

Para el caso de la palabra "internet", tenía un profesor en preparatoria que comentaba que debería ser "la internet" puesto que "internet" es "la red de redes". Sin embargo aquí en México cuando ...
4
votes
2answers
2k views

¿Cuál es la diferencia entre “por lo tanto” y “por tanto”?

Según la RAE: por lo ~. loc. adv. Por consiguiente, por lo que antes se ha dicho, por el motivo o las razones de que acaba de hablarse. U. t. c. loc. conjunt. por tanto. loc. adv. Por lo que, ...
4
votes
3answers
1k views

How formal is cuán? What are the informal alternatives?

How formal is the Spanish word cuán? When is it appropriate to use, and when does it seem out of place? How are sentences using cuán normally expressed in informal speech?
4
votes
1answer
1k views

What's the meaning of the -azo suffix?

What's the meaning of the (noun)-azo? How the nouns are transformed into their -azo noun? In which cases should be used? Examples: zapatazo golpazo
4
votes
2answers
405 views

Understanding “desde ya”

I have heard the phrase "desde ya" used to mean "in advance." Literally, it means "since already." How is it understood to mean "in advance," or is it simply an idiom with a nonsense literal meaning? ...
4
votes
5answers
629 views

Translation of “should have”

What are the possible translations of "should have", as in "I should have told you earlier"? What are the differences between "debería (de)", "debí (de)", "debiera (de)", "debía (de)", etc.?
3
votes
1answer
141 views

What does “churir” mean?

I was watching a Mexican video once, and I heard it. A co-worker of mine claims to know it's meaning, translating it to "dent", but I'm not quite sure, and I can't find any reference online. The ...
3
votes
2answers
136 views

Subject - Verb Agreement: Repitiendo…, y determinando, ilustra

Repitiendo este proceso muchas veces, y determinando la proporción de éxitos para cada muestra, ilustra la idea de la variabilidad de muestra a muestra en la proporción muestral. Should ilustra or ...
3
votes
2answers
215 views

“a” personal en “Yo les presento a mi novio a mis padres”?

Estaba viendo la pregunta sobre el "a" personal y empecé a estudiar un poco el asunto. Me quedé con la duda, que pasa con la "a" personal en caso de que se agregue a un objeto indirecto. Pensé en ...
3
votes
4answers
6k views

¿Por qué la diferencia entre s y z/c solo se da en España?

La pronunciacion en el centro y el norte de España, como sabemos, proncuncia la "ce" y la "zeta" en forma difrente a la "ese" que es el unico sonido que se utliza para estas tres letras en ...
3
votes
4answers
3k views

¿Cómo se usa el antepretérito?

En clase hemos estado repasando el tiempo pluscuamperfecto. En todos los ejemplos que vimos, usaron el imperfecto del verbo haber. Cuando pregunté a mi profesor sobre el pretérito de haber, nos dijo ...
3
votes
1answer
587 views

¿Es correcto decir “El (infinitivo del verbo) …”?

Encontre el siguiente artículo y la siguiente frase dicha por un pólitico de aquí de Monterrey: “El eliminar al 100 por ciento la tenencia nos va a afectar en todas estas áreas de inversión; yo ...
3
votes
2answers
2k views

Difference between “está” and “esta” or “esté” and “este”?

How do I know if I have to use the one with accent and not the one without accent? Could you provide examples?
3
votes
1answer
423 views

Words for “to encourage”: alentar, animar, fomentar

In English, "to encourage" seems to have at least two uses: to suggest that someone should do something (e.g. "He encouraged me to find a new guitar teacher.") to give confidence or hope to someone ...
3
votes
4answers
54k views

congratulations: felicidades vs. felicitaciones

English I have heard both ¡Felicidades! and ¡Felicitaciones! as translations of the interjection, "Congratulations!" What is the difference between the two, and when is each used? Español He ...
3
votes
1answer
812 views

“antes que” vs. “antes de que”

What is the difference between the phrases antes que and antes de que? When should each be used? Are there contexts where one is correct and one is incorrect, or are they completely synonymous?
3
votes
3answers
183 views

Jumping between pronunciations of “y” in Spanish songs

I've heard a few songs (off the top of my head, A Dios Le Pido) where they pronounce "y" both with a y-sound and an English j-sound at times. In some songs, the different pronunciations occur when ...
2
votes
1answer
100 views

“Instante eterno”, ¿cuál es la figura?

Tengo estos pares que, por su significado, no pueden estar juntos, pero que por un juego de palabras tienen algún sentido figurado o son humorísticos. Pero no puedo recordar (o nunca he sabido) su ...
2
votes
4answers
107 views

Declension of the word “patán”

How does one decline (if at all) the adjective patán? We all know there's inconsistencies in languages and I was thinking about this adjective. My intuition tells me it should be declined, but it ...
2
votes
3answers
285 views

Using El, La, Los and Las when it seems that they should not be used

I've been teaching myself Spanish for a while now and am getting ok but I am confused by the use of el, la, los and las. I know that they are used to give gender and number. That's no problem. What ...
2
votes
4answers
448 views

The word ending “-ita/-ito” and its usage

English: From what I've seen, the -ita/-ito ending is used for describing little things, or as a better way of describing time periods, especially in businesses (like a waitress saying La comida va a ...
2
votes
4answers
257 views

What is the difference in meaning between: se celebra & celebra?

I am having a hard time knowing when to use a reflexive pronoun before a verb. I understand when they are used before reflexive verbs but I often see them in front of non reflexive verbs too. For ...
2
votes
3answers
568 views

Palabra correcta para describir la “acción de solicitar”

¿Cuál es la palabra correcta para describir la "acción de solicitar", según la RAE? ¿"Solicitación"?
2
votes
1answer
143 views

Los valores de SE

Encontré unas preguntas cuando estuve haciendo los ejercicios sobre los valores de SE. ¿Podrían ayudarme? SE le trató muy bien. (Creí que es Verbo Pronominal por tratarse, pero la correcta es, ...
2
votes
4answers
268 views

“Toma un tiempo” o “lleva un tiempo”, ¿qué suena más natural?

¿Qué suena más natural en castellano, tomar tiempo o llevar tiempo? Una actividad que toma un tiempo considerable en ser desarrollada. Una actividad que lleva un tiempo el ser desarrollada.
2
votes
1answer
350 views

¿Qué es una “máquina de coser para costura over”?

A friend is asking me to check the price for a maquina de coser para costura over in the U.S., to see if it's worth bringing with me to Mexico when I visit soon. I don't know what that is. She ...
2
votes
1answer
475 views

Translation of the idiom: “To wind (somebody) up”

My question is similar to that of jrdioko's "to wind up (doing something)" However the expression I'm looking for is: "To wind (somebody) up" I know this is an idiomatic expression so there may or ...
2
votes
2answers
2k views

Is there a rule for forming the diminutive of names?

In Spanish, the diminutive form of names can be used to affectionately refer to someone. Are there any rules for how to derive the diminutive form of names (of people, not places), or is it different ...
2
votes
3answers
332 views

Is the country México or Méjico?

Is the name of the country south of the United States spelled México or Méjico? Which is the official name of the country in English and Spanish? When is each version used?
2
votes
2answers
540 views

Plurals of numbers

Is there an easy way to translate the plurals of numbers? Some seem pretty straight forward. For instance two sixes → dos seises. But what about when the number is already plural, or when ...
1
vote
3answers
135 views

Why “se” in front of some verbs?

I get very confused when I see se in front of some verbs in Spanish or about when to put it in front of a verb when writing in Spanish. From my understanding I think it is used when someone is trying ...
1
vote
2answers
86 views

Uso del imperfecto y pretérito

Uso de los verbos en el tiempo pasado. "Recios golpes sonar en la puerta". La frase es de Josefa Martin Garcia. ¿Por qué usa el pretérito en vez del imperfecto?
1
vote
1answer
75 views

Etymology of “broma”

According to dictionaries, this word comes from the Ancient Greek word βρῶμα (brôma), which has the following meanings: a shipworm (Teredo navalis) that bores into wooden piers, ships, etc. that ...
1
vote
4answers
133 views

“Today” and “Tomorrow” with the weather

I am trying to say Today is cold and raining, but thankfully tomorrow is sunny and a little bit cloudy. Would this be correct? Hoy es hace frio y llueve, pero por suerte mañana va a hace ...
1
vote
2answers
123 views

Duda pretérito perfecto e imperfecto

Estoy corrigiendo un texto sobre una película, tratando de ayudar a un amigo que está aprendiendo español, y tengo una duda sobre el uso del pretérito perfecto e imperfecto. Cuantas más vueltas le ...
1
vote
3answers
3k views

Singular and plural of pants, shorts, jeans, etc

In English, words like pants, shorts, and jeans appear to be in the plural but really refer to one item of clothing (I don't know what the technical term for it is). To be more specific, you can say ...

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