Learning Notes

Regular Verbs in the Present Tense: IR Verbs

June 3, 2019

As mentioned, verbs are split into three groups: Group 1: verbs ending in -AR Group 2: verbs ending in -ER Group 3: verbs ending in -IR Now we’ll deal with the 3rd and final group: IR Verb Endings The -IR verb conjugations are very similar to the -ER verbs, except for one little difference… can […]

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Masculine vs. Feminine & Indefinite Articles + Plurals

May 8, 2019

Indefinite Articles – How to Say “a / an” In Portuguese

We just learned how to say “the car”, but what if you want to talk about “a car,” in general? This is called an indefinite article (artigo indefinido), because we’re talking about an undefined car, rather than a specific instance of a car.
Just like “the“, there are also 4 ways to say “a“. Once again, it depends on the gender and plurality:

  • Masculine, single: um carro
    a car
  • Feminine, single: uma mesa
    a table
  • Masculine, plural: uns carros
    some cars
  • Feminine, plural: umas mesas
    some tables

When to use Indefinite Articles

We use artigos indefinidos when we want to talk about a subject or an object without specifying it.

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Numbers – Collective Numerals

May 8, 2019

Collective numbers are the ones that even in their singular form indicate a group of beings or things:
Eles são um quarteto famoso
They are a famous quartet

They work as a noun and are variable in number:
A médica salvou várias dezenas de pessoas
The doctor saved several dozens of people

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Numbers – Fractional Numerals

May 7, 2019

In this lesson, we’ll learn about fractional numerals. Fractional numerals (quantificadores fraccionários) define exact fractions, or parts, of a given thing. Let’s have a look at them.

Quantificador fraccionárioFractional numeralQuantificador fraccionárioFractional numeral
meio/metadehalfdezasseis avossixteenth (part)
terçothirddezassete avosseventeenth (part)
quartofourthdezoito avoseighteenth (part)
quintofifthdezanove avosnineteeth (part)
sextosixthvinte avos/vigésimotwentieth (aprt)
sétimoseventhtrigésimothirtieth (part)
oitavoeigthquadragésimofourtieth (part)
nononinthquinquagésimofiftieth (part)
décimotenthsexagésimosixtieth (part)
onze avos/undécimoeleventh (part)septuagésimoseventieth (part)
doze avos/duodécimotwelfth (part)octogésimoeightieth (part)
treze avosthirteenth (part)nonagésimonintieth (part)
quatorze avosfourteenth (part)centésimohundredth (part)
quinze avosfifteenth (part)milésimothousandth (part)

Fractionals, just like multipliers, are paired with the preposition “de” or its prepositional contraction.

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Numbers – Multiplier Numerals

May 7, 2019

Multipliers define multiples of a given thing or person. Let’s have a look at a few. Quantificador Multiplicativo Multiplier duplo/dobro twice/double/duplicate triplo/tríplice thrice/triple/triplicate quádruplo quadruple quíntuplo quintuple sêxtuplo sextuple, hextuple sétuplo septuple, heptuple … … Multipliers are always preceded by the definite article “o”, and they’re paired with the preposition “de” or its prepositional contractions. Examples: […]

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Numbers – Ordinary Numerals

May 7, 2019

Ordinary numbers tell us the order in which people, animals or things take in a specific series:
A mulher foi a primeira a chegar
The woman was the first to arrive.

They are variable in gender and number:
O homem foi o primeiro a chegar
The man was the first to arrive

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Numbers – Cardinal Numerals

May 7, 2019

What do they do?

Cardinal numbers simply indicate the number of people, animals or things.
Eu tenho três irmãos
I have three brothers

Ela tem dez pássaros
She has ten birds

Vocês compram vinte
You buy twenty oranges

Invariable, except…

The majority of Cardinal numbers are invariable, however, um
one
, dois
two
and the centenas
hundreds
, starting at 200, do depend on the gender of the noun.

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Numbers

May 3, 2019

In the next 3 units, we’ll learn about Portuguese números
numbers
or numerais
numerals
.
Números is just one type of quantificadores
quantifiers
, but they are so important that we thought they deserved their unit.
All the other types of quantificadores will be explained in a different unit which you can find later on.
Números tell us the specific, numeric amount of a particular something.

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Quantifiers – Existential Quantifiers

May 2, 2019

In this lesson, we’ll learn about Portuguese existential quantifiers. Existential quantifiers (quantificadores existenciais) are quantifiers that tell us that there’s a certain group or a certain quantity of elements (nouns), but don’t give us an exact quantity or amount.

Muito, Muita, Muitos, Muitas

Muito (masculine) and muita (feminine) are the singular form equivalents to the English “many”, “very”, “much” or “a lot”. Examples:
Tenho muito medo!
I’m very afraid!

Isto ainda é muita coisa para .
This is still a lot to carry.

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Quantifiers – Universal Quantifiers

May 1, 2019

In this lesson, we’ll learn about Portuguese universal quantifiers. Universal quantifiers (quantificadores universais) are quantifiers that tell us the total and exact amount of elements in a given group.

Todo, Toda, Todos, Todas

Todo (masculine) and toda (feminine) are the singular form equivalents to “all”, “whole”, “every” or “entire” in English.  Examples:
Limpei este quarto todo.
I cleaned this entire room.

Passei a manhã toda a estudar.
I spent the whole morning studying.

Todos (masculine) and todas (feminine) are the plural forms of todo and toda, and maintain the same meaning.

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Quantifiers – Interrogative Quantifiers

April 23, 2019

In this lesson, we’ll take a look at the last subset of quantifiers: interrogative quantifiers. Interrogative quantifiers (quantificadores interrogativos) introduce questions about quantities. A question using an interrogative quantifier is invariably answered using another quantifier.

Quanto, Quanta, Quantos, Quantas

These quantifiers are already known to us! Quanto (masculine) and quanta (feminine) are singular forms equivalents to “how much” in English. Examples:
Quanto gastaste ontem?
How much did you spend yesterday?

É precisa quanta para umas luvas?
How much wool is needed for a pair of gloves?

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Quantifiers – Relative Quantifiers

April 23, 2019

In this lesson, we’ll learn about relative quantifiers. Relative quantifiers (quantificadores relativos) don’t tell us an actual quantity, but instead tell us about a relative quantity in relation to an unspecified whole. Sounds complicated? Our examples will make everything clear. Quanto, Quanta, Quantos, Quantas Quanto (masculine) and quanta (feminine) are singular forms equivalents to “as […]

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Determiners – Possessive Determiners 1

April 22, 2019

In this lesson we’ll once again tackle a thorny category of determiner for most learners – we’re referring, of course, to possessive determiners. This is something we’ve covered before, but today we’ll be looking at them in depth. Possessive determiners (determinantes possessivos) are determiners used to establish a relationship of possession between a given subject […]

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Determiners and Pronouns

April 22, 2019

To master Portuguese, it is essential that we tackle determiners. In this unit, we will be looking at a few types of determiners: definite and indefinite articles, demonstrative determiners, indefinite determiners, interrogative determiners, and possessive determiners. Before we delve into the different types of determiners, it is important to learn how to differentiate between determiners […]

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Determiners – Demonstrative Determiners

April 20, 2019

In this lesson, we’ll take an in-depth look at a topic we’ve broached before, which is Portuguese demonstratives – este/ esse/ aquele/ esta/ essa/ aquela – as well as their plural forms. In this instance, however, they function as determiners! Demonstrative determiners (determinantes demonstrativos) are words that tell us what something is in relation to […]

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Determiners – Interrogative Determiners

April 5, 2019

In this lesson we’ll learn about interrogative determiners. Interrogative determiners (determinantes interrogativos) are determiners we use to formulate direct or indirect questions or exclamations. There are only two of them, but they’re very handy determiners indeed! Que Que is equivalent to the English “what”. Example: Qual, Quais Qual is the singular form equivalent to “which” […]

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Determiners – Indefinite Determiners

April 5, 2019

In this lesson, we’ll have a look at indefinite determiners. Indefinite determiners (determinantes indefinidos) are words that express an indefinite idea of quality about the noun they’re defining. In Portuguese, indefinite determiners always agree in gender and number with the noun they’re defining. Outro, Outra, Outros, Outras Outro (masculine) and Outra (feminine) are the singular […]

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Determiners – Possessive Determiners 2

April 5, 2019

In the previous lesson, we learned about possessive determiners and how to use them. But there was one case that we’re sure left some of you scratching your heads. Let’s have a look at our possessive determiners again: Person Determiner Eu o meu/ a minha/ os meus/ as minhas Tu o teu/ a tua/ os […]

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Clitic Pronouns – Nos and Vos

March 30, 2019

In this lesson we’ll explore the last two clitic pronouns in Portuguese, nos and vos. Nos Nos is equivalent to the English “us” or “to us”, as it is used for both direct and indirect objects. Examples: Bear in mind that the clitic Nos is also used for second person plural, when the preceding verb form ends […]

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Clitic Pronouns – Reflexive Pronouns

March 30, 2019

Reflexive pronouns (pronomes reflexos) are a specific group of object pronouns that we use when the action of a verb is applied to the subject of the sentence. To put it another way, verbs where the subject of the sentence is also the object of the verb’s action. Or in an even simpler way: verbs whose action […]

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Determiners – Definite and Indefinite Articles

March 29, 2019

In this lesson, we’ll explore Portuguese definite and indefinite articles. Articles (artigos) are small words that precede and define a noun. In Portuguese, articles always agree in gender and number with the noun they’re defining. Definite Articles Definite articles (artigos definidos) are determiners used to indicate that a thing or person is unique in some […]

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Clitic Pronouns – Me, Te

March 29, 2019

In this lesson we’ll explore the first two clitic pronouns in Portuguese, me and te. These are two very simple clitics you’ll have no trouble understanding!

Me

Me is equivalent to the English “me” or “to me”, as it is used for both direct and indirect objects. Examples:
Ela chamou-me ao gabinete.
She called me to the office.

Não me parece boa, esta maçã.
This apple doesn’t look good to me.

Te

Te, on the other hand, is equivalent to the English “you” or “to you”, and it is also valid for both direct and indirect objects. Examples:

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Clitic Pronouns – Merging Pronouns

March 22, 2019

In Portuguese, when we use a verb that asks for both direct and indirect object (and they’re pointed out specifically, i.e. we’re aware of what/who they are), we can contract these two pronouns by adding the third person direct pronouns to the indirect object. Sounds complicated, we know. Let’s see a practical example: In this sentence, […]

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Clitic Pronouns – Third Person Singular and Plural

March 22, 2019

In this lesson we’ll explore two sets of clitic pronouns: third person singular clitics, and third person plural clitics. Both sets of clitics work in the exact same way. O/A, Os/As Third person direct pronouns are replaced by o/a (standing for “him” and “her”, respectively) for singular and os/as (two different forms of “them”). Examples: […]

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