Spanish Adverbs

Learning Spanish adverbs? Read ahead to find out the positions of Spanish adverbs and more…

Adverbs can be defined as invariable words which modify an adjective, verb or an adverb. Adverbs allow the provision of information relating to time, place, quantity or the frequency and manner.

Spanish adverbs are generally formed from adjectives by adding the suffix of ‘mente’ to the feminine singular forms of the adjectives.

This rule is similar to the addition of ‘-ly’ to an adjective in the English language. Actually and Spanish adverbs help to explain how, where, what, how often and when or to which degree an action is done.

Position of Spanish Adverbs

When a Spanish adverb is utilized to modify the verb, it is placed after the verb for example ‘jugas bien’ or ‘you play well’. As a rule you must not put an adverb between two verbs like you do in English language.

It should come after the two verbs in the Spanish language for example ‘vamos a jugar aquí’ which translates into ‘let’s play here.’

Other than this when the Spanish adverbs modify other adverbs or adjectives the Spanish adverb will be placed before the adjectives or adverbs it is modifying.

For example ‘escribes muy bien’ for ‘you write very well’ and ‘yo estoy siempre orgulloso de mi país’ which means ‘I’m always proud of my country’.

Actually the simplest way to change an adjective into adverb is to simply add ‘-mente’. An example of how to achieve this is ‘Su herida está grave’ meaning ‘her wound is serious’ would translate into ‘Ella está gravemente herida’ or the English version ‘She is seriously wounded’.

If you have a series of adverbs then only the last one will be given the suffix of ‘-mente’ while all the other adverbs will retain the feminine form of the adjective.

For example ‘El intérprete debe pensar clara, rápida y correctamente’ which translates into ‘the interpreter should think clearly, quickly and correctly’.

Another rule to creating Spanish adverbs is to introduce the preposition con to the singular form of the Spanish noun. For example cuidadoso meaning carefully becomes con cuidado. Similarly perfecto meaning perfectly becomes either perfectamente or con perfección and finally cariñoso meaning affectionately can be used as cariñosamente or con cariño.

To summarize the rules pertaining to Spanish adverbs is simply add ‘-mente’ to the Spanish adjective like we add ‘-ly’ to the English adjective. For example the Spanish adjective ‘lento’ meaning slow in English becomes the Spanish Adverb. ‘lentamente’ which translates into slowly in English language. To utilize it in a sentence one can phrase it as ‘puedes hablar lentamente?’ meaning ‘Can you speak slowly?’ rather than saying ‘puedes hablar lento’ which means ‘Can you speak slow?’, which would be incorrect grammar in both the Spanish and English languages.

You should note that there are Spanish adverbs which do not have any connection with adjectives like aquí – here, bien – well, despacio -slowly.

Spanish Adverbs without a Pattern of Origin

Memorize these as they are not classified with any pattern of origination. The common Spanish adverbs following in this category include mucho meaning a lot, muy meaning very, mal meaning badly and bastante meaning quite.

Other than this the words demasiado, meaning too, and nunca, meaning never, also fall into this category along with poco which means little and peor which means worse and finally siempre which translates as always. With these simple rules you will be well on your way to learning Spanish adverbs and their utilization in the Spanish language.

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