Sunday, November 9, 2014

Valer and validar

Valer means "to value." Validar means "to validate." Jokes later.

Tomás up to no good?

Tomás viola a Viola means "Tomás rapes Viola."

To see or not to see

Ver, "to see," and vestir, "to dress," have two conjugations in common, viste and visto. Jokes later.

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Venir and vengar

Venir means "to come" and vengar means "to avenge." The word vengamos is a conjugation of both verbs, and in vengar it is a present-tense conjugation and a past-tense one, so ¡Vengamos! ¡Vengamos! ¡Vengamos! means "We avenge! Let us come! We avenged!"

Confuse a child or a dog

The command ¡Ve! means "Go!" (from ir) and "See!" (from ver). ¡Vete! is "Leave!" and "See yourself!"

Vender and vendar

Vendar means "to blind." ¡Vendemos! ¡Vendemos! means "We sell! Let´s blind!"

Sumir and sumar

Sumar is "to add" and sumir is "to plunge." Sumamos means "we add" and "Let's plunge!" And sumo means "I add" and "I plunge."

Salir and salar

Salar is to add salt, in cooking or for preservation. ¡No sales temprano! means "You don't leave early!" and "Don't put salt in the cooking early!"

Thursday, November 6, 2014

To be or not to be

¡Sé español! can mean "I know Spanish!" or be a command to a child or a dog, "Be Spanish!"

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Raer and rayar

Raer means "to scrape off" and rayar means something like "to draw lines." Raer is irregular and has ys in some conjugations, producing conjugations identical to some of those of rayar. "Rayamos. Entonces, rayamos" means "We draw lines. Then, let's scrape off!"

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Yes, we can.

Podemos means "we can" and also "Let's prune!"

Maybe not too odd

The verb poblar means "to inhabit" or "to populate." The first-person singular conjugation is pueblo.

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Henchir and hinchar

The meanings of these two verbs are similar. Henchir means "to fill" as in henchir de gratitude, "to fill with gratitude." Hinchar means "to inflate" as in hinchar una administración, "to inflate the bureaucracy."

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Fundir and fundar

Fundar means "to found" and fundir means "to smelt." Funda means "he founds" or "Smelt!"

Can you see it?

Ven can mean "they see" (from ver) or be a command to a child to "Come!" (from venir).

An odd state of affairs

Estado translates in the dictionary as "state" and several other nouns. But it is the past participle of estar, "been." He estado rico y he estado pobre.

A suit of clothes

Traje translates in the dictionary as "suit of clothes." But it is also the pretérito of the verb traer, to bring. Traje un traje (por si refresca). "I brought a suit of clothes (in case it gets chilly)."

¡No te sientes!

¡No te sientes! can mean "You don't feel!" or "Don't sit down!" Both are second person singular.


Is una always "a" or "one"? Not when it is the imperative of the verb unir, to unite (third person singular). "Unite!"

Asiste. Is its meaning obvious?

The meaning of asiste is "obvious" is it not? "He attends" obviously. Not so fast. It can also be the pretérito of the verb asir, to grasp (second person singular). "You grasped."

Creer and crear

Creer, to believe, and crear, to create, are so close that many of their verb conjugations overlap. Creemos can mean "we believe" or "Let's create!" Creamos can mean "we create" or "Let's believe!" There are many more. Crea can mean "he creates" or it can demand of an adult "Believe!" Cree can mean "he believes" or demand of an adult "Create!" And never mind the subjunctive conjugations.

Paro. I stop? Or not.

Paro can be the first person singular of parar, to stop, or of parir, to give birth. Probably the latter results from failing to do the former. Paramos means "we stop" and also "Let's give birth!" Pare is a command to an adult, "Stop!", or "she gives birth."

Vino. What does it mean?

A student of Spanish comes across the word vino in a reading, but the translation "wine" does not make sense in the context. What is it? It is the pretérito of the verb venir (third person singular). Vino con vino. "She came with wine."