Monthly Archives: July 2022

What is the difference between "Qué vas a hacer" and "Qué se le va a hacer."

I have a question:

I'm working through this Anki deck (Neri's Spanish Sentences):

https://ankiweb.net/shared/info/84075677

And there, I encountered a card where "What are you going to do?" was translated as a "Qué se le va a hacer."

Personally, I'd translate it as "Qué vas a hacer". So, my question is, what is the difference, and in what case should one use "Qué se le va a hacer."

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The pronunciation of letter “ñ” in Spanish (Intermediate Listening Practice)

The pronunciation of letter “ñ” in Spanish can be a little tricky for Spanish learners, especially if this sound is not present in their native language. This peculiar letter does not derive from Latin as some might think. Its origins date back to the 12th century, when monks used to copy books by hand in the monasteries. At that time, as parchment was very expensive and scarce, the monks had to save space in words that contained the spelling “nn”, which is common in Latin, and chose to write a simple “n” and add a “virgulilla” on top as a form of abbreviation.

Practice the pronunciation of this curious letter with the help of the following video:

 

 

Video transcription and translation

 

Vamos a practicar con el sonido de la letra “ñ”.

Let’s practice with the sound of the letter “ñ”.

 

¡Vamos!

Let’s go!

 

La “ñ” es un sonido nasal. Esto significa que el aire sale por la nariz.

The “ñ” is a nasal sound. This means that air comes out from the nose.

 

Y, atención, la lengua se adhiere al dorso del paladar.

And, attention, the tongue adheres to the back of the palate.

 

En otros idiomas como francés, italiano o portugués, corresponde a los sonidos que veis en estas palabras.

In other languages such as French, Italian or Portuguese, it corresponds to the sounds you see in these words.

 

Y recordad que la “ñ” no es una “n” con una “i”.

And remember that the “ñ” is not an “n” with an “i”.

 

Escuchad cómo se diferencian estas palabras: uñón y unión.

Listen to how these words are differentiated: uñón and unión.

 

Pues, ahora vamos a practicar juntos.

Well, now let’s practice together.

 

Recordad que la “ñ” aparece normalmente al principio de una sílaba.

Remember that the “ñ” normally appears at the beginning of a syllable.

 

Pues, teniendo todo esto claro, ¡a practicar!

So, having all this clear, let’s practice!

 

A continuación, os voy a presentar la “ñ” con las diferentes vocales.

Next, I am going to introduce you to the “ñ” with the different vowels.

 

Escucha y repite conmigo.

Listen and repeat after me.

 

Recuerda que puedes parar el vídeo y repetir cuantas veces necesites.

Remember that you can stop the video and repeat it as many times as you need.

 

Bien, pues, con la “a”:

Well, then, with the “a”:

 

Mañana, niña, caña.

Tomorrow, girl, cane.

 

Con la “e”:

With the “e”:

 

Muñeca, bañera, niñez.

Doll, bathtub, childhood.

 

Con la “i”:

With the “i”:

 

Añil, teñir.

Indigo, to dye.

 

Con la “o”:

With the “o”:

 

Año, baño, guiño.

Year, bath, wink.

 

Con la “u”:

With the “u”:

 

Pañuelo, castañuela, buñuelo (que es un dulce).

Handkerchief, castanet, fritter (which is a sweet).

 

Bien, pues, si quieres practicar con más palabras, solamente necesitas ir al enlace, al link, que hay aquí en la explicación del vídeo y encontrarás un reto lleno de palabras con “ñ”.

Well, if you want to practice with more words, you just need to go to the link here in the explanation of the video and you will find a challenge full of words with “ñ”.

 

¿Conoces alguna más? Por favor escríbela aquí en comentarios.

Do you know of any others? Please write it here in comments.

 

Muchas gracias y hasta pronto.

Thank you very much and see you soon.

 

The post The pronunciation of letter “ñ” in Spanish (Intermediate Listening Practice) first appeared on Spanish Language Blog.

Super basic question here, but why can the verb "to-give" have so many different variations?

I'm trying to deconstruct some basic sentences to understand how sentence structure really works in Spanish, as this has been a sticking point for me. For example:

  • She gives it to him = Ella se la da

However

  • I must give it to him = Debo dársela a él

Why are these so different? Why is "I must give it to him" not "Debo se la da"

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Is "der" an actual spanish word?

I've recently been listening to la canción Der pelo by Bebe. But the thing is, I have no idea what "der pelo" is supposed to mean. I know that pelo = hair, but what about the der? It might be spelled incorrectly on purpose as she does that a lot in this album (even in the name of the album "Un Pokito De Rocanrol"). Does anyone have any idea?

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The Origin of Color Names in Spanish: Advance Listening Practice

Have you ever wondered how they came up with color names in Spanish? Find out in today’s blog!

Video transcription and translation

 

Quizás nunca te lo habías planteado, pero el color es fascinante.

You may never have thought about it, but color is fascinating.

 

Cómo los rayos de luz rebotan en todo y alteran cómo vemos las cosas. Y cómo desde el principio los humanos hemos tratado de describir el color de lo que vemos.

How light rays bounce off everything and alter how we see things. And how from the beginning we humans have tried to describe the color of what we see.

 

Por ejemplo, Platón consideraba que existían 4 colores básicos: el blanco, el negro, el rojo y el brillante; algo que para nosotros ni siquiera es un color.

For example, Plato considered that there were 4 basic colors: white, black, red and bright; something that for us is not even a color.

 

Y algunos siglos antes Homero escribió sobre el mar diciendo que tenía un color vino oscuro.

And a few centuries earlier Homer wrote about the sea saying that it had a dark wine color.

 

De hecho, la forma de los griegos de describir el color hizo que durante un tiempo se creyera que, literalmente, lo percibían distinto a nosotros.

In fact, the Greeks’ way of describing color meant that for a time it was believed that they literally perceived it differently than we do.

 

El mismo Nietsche llegó a afirmar que los antiguos griegos eran daltónicos.

Nietsche himself went so far as to claim that the ancient Greeks were colorblind.

 

Pero no iba de eso. No era un tema de cómo sus ojos y su cerebro percibían el color, sino de cómo lo describían.

But that’s not what it was about. It wasn’t a matter of how their eyes and brain perceived color, but how they described it.

 

¿Y cómo describimos el color en castellano?

And how do we describe color in Spanish?

 

Quizás te parece que lo hacemos de una forma mucho más lógica y comprensible, pero también tenemos nuestras cosas.

Maybe it seems to you that we do it in a much more logical and understandable way, but we also have our own things.

 

Por ejemplo: ¿por qué este color y su variante más clara siguen siendo el mismo color: verde oscuro y verde claro…

For example: why is this color and its lighter variant still the same color: dark green and light green…

 

Pero a este lo llamamos rojo y a su variante clara le damos otro nombre distinto, rosa?

But we call this one red and give its light variant a different name, pink?

 

¿Y por qué les pusimos esos nombres a los colores?

And why did we give the colors those names?

 

Probablemente te sea complicado imaginar por qué el blanco se llama blanco, el verde verde o el naranja, naranja.

It is probably hard for you to imagine why white is called white, green is green or orange is orange.

 

Ok, el del naranja es un poco más obvio.

Ok, the orange one is a bit more obvious.

 

Pero vamos a repasar algunos de estos nombres.

But let’s review some of these names.

 

Por ejemplo: rojo. Antes del siglo XV en España nadie decía “rojo” para hablar de esto.

For example: red. Before the 15th century in Spain nobody said “red” to talk about this.

 

Lo llamaban bermejo, aunque también se usaba “colorado” y “encarnado”.

It was called “bermejo”, although “colorado” and “encarnado” were also used.

 

El término rojo procede del adjetivo latino “russus”.

The term red comes from the Latin adjective “russus”.

 

Pero cuidado, porque ‘russus’era un matiz específico del color rojo: como un rojo fuerte.

But beware, because ‘russus’ was a specific shade of red: like a dark red.

 

El naranja es fácil. Sí, se llama así por la fruta.

Orange is easy. Yes, it is named after the fruit.

 

Fueron los árabes quienes introdujeron la naranja en Europa.

It was the Arabs who introduced the orange in Europe.

 

La llamaban algo así como naranǧa, un nombre que adoptaron del persa nārang. Así que una cosa llevó a la otra.

They called it something like naranǧa, a name they adopted from the Persian nārang. So one thing led to another.

 

Y lo mismo pasó con el amarillo. Que atención, recibe su nombre del animal, el armadillo.

And the same happened with the yellow one. And attention, it gets its name from the animal, the armadillo.

 

¡¿No hombre, qué dices?! Qué va. Ah, ¿no? A mí me sonaba bien.

No man, what are you saying?! No way. Ah, no? It sounded good to me.

 

Pues el amarillo viene del latín “amarĕllus”, que a su vez deriva de otro término latino, “amarus”, que significa amargo.

For yellow comes from the Latin “amarĕllus”, which in turn derives from another Latin term, “amarus”, meaning bitter.

 

Sí, ahora sí. Ojo, que esta historia tiene miga.

Yes, now it is. Pay attention, this story has a lot of substance.

 

Se dice que es por la bilis, llamada en aquel entonces humor amargo.

It is said to be because of the bile, then called bitter humor.

 

El mal funcionamiento en la secreción de la bilis provoca ictericia, que puesto sencillo, es cuando la piel se te pone amarilla.

The malfunction in the secretion of bile causes jaundice, which to put it simple, is when your skin turns yellow.

 

Y así la palabra latina para “amargo” terminó significando amarillo.

And so the Latin word for “bitter” ended up meaning yellow.

 

Obviamente, hay otros colores que reciben su nombre del latín.

Obviously, there are other colors that receive their name from Latin.

 

Al fin y al cabo el español es una lengua romance.

After all, Spanish is a Romance language.

 

Por ejemplo, el verde viene de “virĭdis”, que en latín servía para referirse al color verde pero que también significaba vigoroso, vivo, joven.

For example, green comes from “virĭdis”, which in Latin served to refer to the color green but also meant vigorous, lively, young.

 

El negro también viene del latín, pero con una particularidad.

Black also comes from Latin, but with a twist.

 

Nosotros llamamos igual al negro mate que al negro brillante, pero los romanos distinguían.

We call matte black the same as glossy black, but the Romans made a distinction.

 

El negro mate era “ater” y el brillante “niger”. El castellano se quedó con niger, que derivó en la palabra “negro”.

The matte black was “ater” and the shiny black was “niger”. The Spanish remained with niger, which derived in the word “negro”.

 

De hecho, en nuestro idioma hay muchas palabras que derivan del niger de los romanos.

In fact, in our language there are many words that derive from the Roman niger.

 

Como denigrar, que alude a manchar, a ennegrecer la reputación de alguien.

As denigrar, which alludes to stain, to blacken the reputation of someone.

 

Otro día podemos hablar de por qué el negro se ha usado durante tanto tiempo con connotaciones negativas.

Another day we can talk about why black has been used for so long with negative connotations.

 

De hecho, si hacemos ese video, suscríbete para no perdértelo.

By the way, if we make that video, subscribe so you don’t miss it.

 

El blanco es distinto. No proviene del latín sino del alemán “blank”.

White is different. It does not come from Latin but from the German “blank”.

 

El castellano lo tomó en la Edad Media, en la época de las invasiones germánicas en la península Ibérica.

Castilian was adopted in the Middle Ages, at the time of the Germanic invasions of the Iberian Peninsula.

 

De hecho hay constancia del uso de blanco como adjetivo desde el siglo XII.

In fact, there is evidence of the use of white as an adjective since the 12th century.

 

Es un caso parecido al del rojo: antes se llamaba de otra manera.

It is a case similar to that of red: it used to be called differently.

 

En el caso del blanco, la palabra era albo. Esta vez sí, derivada del latín “albus”.

In the case of white, the word was albo. This time yes, derived from the Latin “albus”.

 

Hoy en día aún encontramos el uso de “alba” como adjetivo para decir blanca.

Today we still find the use of “alba” as an adjective for white.

 

Como cuando hablamos del “alba”, la primera luz del día cuando sale el sol.

As when we speak of “alba” (dawn), the first light of day when the sun rises.

 

Y por último veamos el azul. Igual que el naranja, el azul se introdujo en el castellano a través de los árabes, que a su vez tomaron el vocablo del persa.

And finally, let’s look at blue. Like orange, blue was introduced into Spanish by the Arabs, who in turn took the word from Persian.

 

Los árabes usaban “lazawárd”, algo muy parecido a la palabra que con la que se referían al lapislázuli.

The Arabs used “lazawárd”, something very similar to the word used to refer to lapis lazuli.

 

Esa piedra de color azul intenso tan apreciada desde la antigüedad.

This intense blue stone has been so appreciated since ancient times.

 

Lo cierto es que no es nada fácil ponerles nombre a los colores.

The truth is that it is not easy to name the colors.

 

Por ejemplo, este es uno de mis colores favoritos últimamente.

For example, this is one of my favorite colors lately.

 

¿Cómo lo llamarías? Déjalo en los comentarios y a ver si nos ponemos de acuerdo.

What would you call it? Leave it in the comments and let’s see if we can agree.

 

Si te ha gustado este video, compártelo con alguien. ¡Nos vemos!

If you liked this video, share it with someone. See you!

 

 

 

The post The Origin of Color Names in Spanish: Advance Listening Practice first appeared on Spanish Language Blog.

How to say "Have fun!"

I've been studying Spanish for some 6 or 7 years now (maybe 2 years seriously) and something I've never really revisited was how I say "have fun!" in Spanish. For several years now I've been saying "diviértete" but I've had very limited experience with native speakers so I've no idea if that's an acceptable thing to say, if it even makes sense.

Firstly, I'm not sure it makes any sense. But even if it does, is there some other more idiomatic or natural way to express the same idea? I could also think of some other ways, such as:

  • "¡Que te diviertas!"
  • "¡Ten diversión!" (I think someone mentioned this to me but it still doesn't feel right, as much as I can say that)
  • "¡Que sea divertido!"
  • "¡Pasa buen rato!"

I guess I'm just wondering if any of these work, or none of these, or if there are more casual ways that maybe don't use direct translations of the word "fun" that I'm missing.

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