I’ve decided to give you a few tips & tricks this time – ways of extending your vocabulary without having to work too hard!! With these tips & tricks you have potentially 1000s of new words!
Maybe that’s true of people – but this is all about words in Spanish. There are some ‘tricks’ for making opposites (antonyms) – & while they don’t work with everything – they are useful nonetheless.
This is done by adding a prefix – a few letters to the beginning of the word – & hey presto, you have the opposite!
The most common of these prefixes are a, anti, des, in.
normal – anormal
constitucional – anticonstitucional
empleo – desempleo
frecuente – infrecuente
SHOPS & SHOPPING
You’ve probably noticed that the names of a lot of shops make it obvious what is sold there. This is just one thing I love about the Spanish language – it’s so logical! You might not realise that this logic extends to the person who either makes the goods or works in the shop. The words are formed by adding something to the end of the name of the item – by adding a suffix. It doesn’t work with all of them – but it does seem to with most!
I few months ago I wrote about ‘False Friends’…English & Spanish words which sound the same but mean something totally – & sometimes embarrassingly – different.
However, there are literally thousands of words in Spanish & English which sound the same, & pretty much mean the same too. I have nointention of listing them all, but here are some guidelines. I’ve called them BUENOS AMIGOS – Good Friends – technically they are known as cognates. We have them because both English & Spanish have Latin & Greek roots.
I’ve given just a few examples for each – but there are many more!
Some words are actually the same – or very nearly!!
TION / CIÓN
Lots of English words which end in TION, will end in CIÓN in Spanish- & will generally mean the same.
LY / MENTE
There are 100s of English words which end in LY – in Spanish they will end in MENTE
here are just a few – there are many more
Many English words ending with ARY, will end with ARIO in Spanish
IC/ICO, MENT/MENTO, ISM/ISMO & IVE/IVO
These are easy – often you just put an O on the end…….. yes I know some people do that to everything – but sometimes you really can!
A lot of English words which end in NCE, simply change to NCIA in Spanish
Some hardly change at all…if indeed at all….
Many words which end in TY in English, change to DAD in Spanish
AND IT EVEN WORKS WITH LOTS OF VERBS….
IFY/E to AR/IR
So – with just those tricks you can increase your vocabulary by 1000s of words – literally! …… and because it has been such a hot summer – I can’t think of anything better than this……..