I have a question about the use of subjunctive in this phrase "Palabras que terminen en -ar " which is the title on a webpage.

Why do they use subjunctive in this phrase? shouldn't it be terminan?

1 Answer 1


Although "Palabras que terminan en -ar" is correct to refer to words that do in fact end in -ar, the subjunctive is also correct to mean "Words that happen to end in -ar".

I think the subjunctive "terminen" is used to refer to the future time when the person will provide the answer, and also to cast some doubt on the existence of such words, or on the possibility of the responder to find them. This is typical of quizzes stated as follows:

A. Ahora, debes decir palabras que no sean verbos que terminen en -ar.

B. Estelar, colmenar, ajuar, ...

(Notice that the subjunctive "sean" points in the same direction, as opposed to the more certain: Palabras que no son verbos que terminan en -ar)

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