Talk:Spanish verbs

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edit·history·watch·refresh Stock post message.svg To-do list for Spanish verbs:

Sections to add and flesh out
  • How Spanish verbs work ✓
    • Mood, tense and aspect — forms of the verb ✓
      • Non-finite forms ✓
      • The indicative ✓
      • The subjunctive ✓
      • The conditional ✓
      • The imperative ✓
    • Examples of verbs conjugated ✓ Moved to Spanish verb paradigm
    • Spanish verb Voice
    • Use of verbs
      • Contrasting simple and continuous forms ✓
      • Contrasting the present and the future ✓
      • Contrasting the preterite and the imperfect ✓
      • Contrasting the preterite and the perfect
      • Contrasting the indicative and the subjunctive
      • Contrasting the subjunctive and the conditional
      • Contrasting the subjunctive and the imperative ✓
      • Contrasting the present and the future subjunctive ✓
      • Contrasting the preterite and the past anterior ✓
      • Contrasting ser and estar
      • Contrasting haber and tener
      • Use of the gerund
      • Negation ✓
      • Expressing movement ✓
  • Glossary of simple Spanish verbs in the infinitive See List of Spanish verbs
General aims
  • Keep a logical structure whereby standard Spanish grammar is described in some detail, with deviations from this fully described in the proper section.
  • Make proper references to traditional grammatical terminology, but favour the terminology and procedures of modern linguistics.
  • Follow Real Academia recommendations, but making sure to specify where this may deviate from usage.
  • Use italics for Spanish, and normal type for English.
  • Convert lists to tables where appropriate

List of simple verbs[edit]

Beware the list has moved to a page on its own (List of Spanish verbs). Make your additions there. I moved the list because the main article was becoming really unwieldy. I've also moved the conjugation paradigm to Spanish verb paradigm. I'm thinking of moving the section on vowel-alternating verbs elsewhere, too. Wikipedia guidelines say an article should be no more than 32 KB and this is about 36 KB. --Pablo D. Flores 22:38, 23 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Hey, should I add verbs that I know, even if I'm not sure if they're really simple? -Cookiemobsta 07:24, 4 Dec 2004 (UTC)

The list of simple verbs should not contain:

  • Words which are not simple or not the most appropriate ones for a foreign learner of Spanish
  • Gratuitously offensive words
  • Dialectal words

I'd say this excludes chingar, a vulgar Mexican word included by an anon in order to shock.

If the vulgar, dialectal, secondary meaning of coger is to be given, then something of an equivalent register is required to translate it. "To have sex" really misses the mark. "To fuck" is a tad harsh. "To shag", or similar, is just right. Chamaeleon 10:24, 9 Mar 2005 (UTC)


If anyone has any questions about Spanish verbs, put them here and I shall answer them in the article. Chamaeleon 02:19, 12 Jan 2005 (UTC)

Isn't andar an irregular verb, because in the pretérito perfecto simple it's conjugated anduve not andé? And if it is, are there other verbs like it?

It is irregular indeed, there are other verbs that have a similar conjugation, such as tener (tuve) and derivated verbs: contener, sostener, mantener... —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 08:17, 10 December 2007 (UTC)

The ending of some verb forms for andar and tener is similar, but the conjugation is not the same. In "anduve" the stem of the infinitive ("and-") is there, in "tuve", the stem of the infinitive ("ten-") is reduced to just "t-", also, in other tenses/persons the parallelism is lost (Cfr: yo ando vs. yo tengo). I'm not sure, but it looks very likely that andar is a one of a kind irregular verb... "Wenceslao Grillo" 1:40, 26 Aug 2013 (GMT -0300)

Could you please add some explanation and commentary around transitive, pronomial, reflextive verbs and how they relate (are some a sub-type of the others?), including (for example) that sometimes the "reflexive version" of a verb actually has a different meaning to the underlying verb? (Or perhaps this is more general and that the same verb has different meaning based on context / prepositions used, etc). Maybe this is already documented somewhere, but I couldn't find it.2A02:C7D:C5CC:DA00:7C9D:7531:18C9:91D1 (talk) 16:31, 7 January 2018 (UTC)

Near Future[edit]

This article is lacking of the near future (I'm going to go), which is prefered in South America over the Simple Future ("Esta noche voy a ir a bailar"/"Esta noche iré a bailar").

Perhaps it woud be also good to add a short comment on the preferences of use of the pasado simple (South America) and the pretérito perfecto ("Ayer fuí a bailar"/ "Ayer he ido a bailar").

Finally, the pretérito anterior continuo ("hubiera (hubiese) estado hablando") seams to me that exists, yet I haven't been able to find an example that couldn't be expressed in another splimpler form. -Mariano July 8, 2005 10:42 (UTC)

  • Note: List of Spanish verbs has been moved to Wikitonary under the name list of all spanish verbs K-unit 15:38, July 22, 2005 (UTC)
Referring to the periphrastic future (ir a/going to), a recent edit interchanged "Spanish" with "English" in "This form is much more common in Spanish than in English." I wasn't aware that either language significantly outdid the other in use of the periphrastic future. Can anyone cite a source in support of either claim? By the way, "South America" includes Brazil and excludes Mexico and Central America—is that really what you want to say? Kotabatubara (talk) 15:54, 1 February 2015 (UTC)
Don't be so nice to IP editors. The quickest fix is to delete the sentence, which probably never was anything but a personal observation. --Jotamar (talk) 18:19, 2 February 2015 (UTC)


Hi, I am a native Mexican Spanish speaker; I just wanted to make a comment about the section about the future conjugation of spanish:

I am not sure about other countries, but here in Mexico, the future tense is not often used to express a future idea (like in english I will go) But to express a desire to know something like in this example:

JUAN: María, Laura quiere hablar contigo. / in English: Maria, Laura wants to talk to you

MARÍA: ¿Qué querrá? / literally, in English: what will she want? But correctly translated: What do you think she wants?

Future again[edit]

I just went further into the article and it seems my previous comment is already observed here. Sorry!

Perfective vs. Perfect[edit]

I believe the term "perfective" has been used incorrectly to describe the tenses/aspects formed with haber. See Grammatical_aspect#Confusing_terminology:_perfective_vs._perfect.

"Perfective" refers to actions viewed as a simple whole, as opposed to actions viewed as a process (imperfective) and actions with a resulting later state or condition (perfect). Hence, the only necessarily "perfective" tense in spanish is the simple preterite (pretérito indefinido).

Unless i am completely misguided, the term "Perfective" as it currently appears on the page should be replaced with "Perfect," to correctly describe the Spanish perfecto.

I think you're right. I've seen the term "perfective" used to discuss more exotic languages, but only ever "perfect" in relation to Spanish. — Hippietrail 01:38, 1 November 2005 (UTC)


Someone seems bent on including a link to in the external links section of this article (see the history). I have been deleting it (as have others) every time I return to see it. In my opinion it is irrelevant when they just link to the homepage of a site and you have to click throught several pages to actually find the conjugator and then, lo and behold, it's a 6Mb+ download instead of an online conjugator. What do you guys think? Should the link be included? If it is to be included, at least it should link directly to the download page ( *and* clearly state that it is a download. This also might be a case of attemted self-promotion. LinguistAtLarge 15:13, 9 March 2006 (UTC)

Mmm, someone should download it and give it a try. I haven't tried any on-line conjugator, but if they are any good, then there's no need of a 'downloadable' one. Mariano(t/c) 08:17, 10 March 2006 (UTC)

Looks like the user has been blocked. Hopefully that will take care of the problem. LinguistAtLarge 05:38, 14 March 2006 (UTC)

Pablo-Flores I am the guilty party for the above link to My native language is English and when first coming to Spain I really had a hard time learning the Spanish Verbs. The online Spanish verb conjugators were great if you just wanted the answer, but to actually learn the verbs I found it alot easier with some form of testing, so I searched the internet until I found the above link. The software does not just give you the verbs fully conjugated but actually tests you to see whether you are able to conjugate the verbs.

I do apologise for not linking directly to I did not realise it would be such a big deal. These guys at provide this Spanish verb conjugator - Trainer for free, and I just thought your users would benefit from it. When you kept on removing the link, I just kept on adding it in, I just thought it was someone from the online conjugators removing it. Another thing Verbos is a software download as well and they require Java Runtime environment sort of like is a software download and requires .net framework.

I apologise once again if you interpreted my contribution as Spam. It was not my intension. —This unsigned comment was added by (talkcontribs) 06:49, 20 March 2006.
I understand. However (and this is for everybody), I still think this is unnecessary. The external links sections of several Spanish language-related articles are very bloated. There are a million of Spanish tutorials, conjugators, quizzes etc. and we can't test them all to see which are good enough. And the prospective student of Spanish can easily find them using a common search engine. Wikipedia is not a web directory. --Pablo D. Flores (Talk) 10:57, 20 March 2006 (UTC)

Status of page[edit]

I'm looking through the main page, as well as the discussion page. The Discussion seems to have gone quiet about a year ago, and the main page has regular small updates. I'm thinking to make some changes to the main page, mostly as a vehicle for me to learn. I am not an expert in linguistics (or Spanish, for that matter).

The list at the top of the Discussion page is great; it seems to have a list of topics that still need attention (I say "seems" because I haven't checked the list versus the main page yet).

The biggest problems with the page, from my reading, is its inconsistency with similar pages (such as French verbs, English verbs, and so on); and its inconsistency with supporting pages (such as Grammatical mood, Grammatical tense, and so forth). Wouldn't it be great if the link to tense used the same definition as the words on this page ...?

Because of my lack of subject-matter knowledge, I'm hoping the community can help me improve the page. I'm not sure how the page will end up looking, but I am sure that I'll learn a lot.

DanielVonEhren 00:21, 12 July 2007 (UTC)

Personalized, adjective form and other (IMHO) mistakes[edit]

Hi, as a native Spanish speaker, I'm afraid I can't agree with some of the contents of the article. Before making any correction, I would like to discuss here what I find to be mistakes.

As far as I know, there is no personalized, adjective form for every verb. It may sound convenient and can look similar to English, but nouns derived from verbs such as andante (from andar, walk), comedor (from comer, eat), hablador (from hablar, speak) do not mean, respectively walker, eater or speaker. I don't think it's a recognized form of any verb.

On the other hand, at least in Spain's Spanish language textbooks, we where taught a non-finite forms that is missing in the article: the compound gerund (e.g. habiendo hablado, having talked).

Another mistake is considering Conditional a mood. There are just three moods: Indicative, Subjunctive and Imperative. The conditional tense is part of the indicative.

I find a general trend in the article to assimilate Spanish verb conjugation to English verb conjugation. I personally think it's OK, as long as you don't introduce errors in order to avoid a long explanation. We can end up with a very clear but perfectly mistaken article.

For instance, in Spanish "continuous tenses" as such do not exist. It is true that you can use the auxiliary verb "estar" to form "continuous" tenses. You can also use "ir a" to form a future in exactly the same way you use "going to" in English. In Spanish this is called a "Perífrasis verbal" and there are lots of them, just as in English (for example: "used to do something" to indicate a habit). The thing is that they don't are "canonical" tenses.

I'll try to find a link to a complete and exact table of the verb tenses defined in Spanish to avoid misunderstandings. For the time being, allow me to list the tenses as taught in Spain:

-Indicative mood: Simple forms: Presente, pretérito imperfecto, pretérito indefinido, condicional simple, futuro simple. Compound forms: Pretérito perfecto, pretérito pluscuamperfecto, pretérito anterior, condicional compuesto, futuro compuesto.

-Subjunctive mood: Simple forms: Presente, pretérito imperfecto, futuro simple. Compound forms: Pretérito perfecto, pretérito pluscuamperfecto, futuro perfecto.

-Imperative mood: Presente.

By the way, it seems that there is a confusion between perfect tenses and compound tenses. In Spanish, they are called perfect because the action indicated by them is finished. The pretérito indefinido is also called pretérito perfecto simple, because it is a perfect, simple tense, and right now it is listed as non-perfect. So I would rename what the article refers as perfect tenses to compound tenses since they are conjugated by the composition of haber and the corresponding participle.

Sorry for the long exposition. -- (talk) 09:04, 10 December 2007 (UTC)

Thank you for your suggestions. Over time, a lot of your recommendations appear to have been integrated into the article, for example, merging the conditional mood into the tenses section. I cleaned up that section some more yesterday and I think it's in pretty good shape right now. I also went ahead and removed the part about a personalized adjective form for every verb, as that seems to be WP:OR. And finally, I made it clear in the periphrasis section that those forms exist but are not canonical. If you're still around, I'd be happy to hear more of your suggestions and work with you further on improving this article. Sincerely, – Novem Lingvae (talk) 11:20, 17 February 2009 (UTC)

Condicional is not a mood, and there are no continuous tenses oficially as in English[edit]

I would like to make some comments or suggestions for correcting this article. First of all, according to the modern Spanish grammar, condicional simple and condicional compuesto are not a mood, but two tenses in the "indicative mood". There is no such mood as "conditional" in Spanish. Secondly, there are no "continuous tenses" the way it is now in the article. The verb estar and the gerund is just a periphrasis or circumlocution (of many other) that expresses continuity, but they are not verbal tenses and never were. My suggestion is consulting a conjugation of a verb from DRAE online and using the terms and categories as they are there. Regards, --TheMexican (talk) 13:44, 21 December 2007 (UTC)

I made the necessary corrections, I also completed with some examples and explanations. --TheMexican (talk) 20:26, 21 December 2007 (UTC)

Vosotros habéis / hesties =[edit]

Can someone confirm the form hesties? I learned this as vosotros habéis. Foros2000 (talk) 10:17, 22 January 2008 (UTC)

helper verb "haber" conjugated: he, has, ha, hemos, hesties, han)

I also learned it as vosotros habéis. I have never seen hesties in any of my textbooks, and to be honest, it doesn't even look Spanish. I'll take a quick look in the article right now and make appropriate changes. – Novem Lingvae (talk) 11:09, 17 February 2009 (UTC)


Hi i´m spanish and the correct form is HABÉIS (HABER). —Preceding unsigned comment added by Carran (talkcontribs) 10:12, 8 November 2009 (UTC)

Habemos is a barbarim[edit]

As "Habemos" in this is a barbarism I proced to modificate this coment→The form habemos is common, and in certain contexts it is even acceptable in formal or literary language. [1]

Time expressions with preterit or imperfect[edit]

Based on scans of the Davies corpus at <>, I have revised the lists of time expressions that were said to "indicate" (better: "tend to co-occur with") either the preterit or the imperfect tense. Most of the expressions were well-matched with one of the two tenses, but — based on the corpus scans — I have moved "por un rato" from the imperfect list to the preterit list because, like "por un día", "por un año", etc., it specifies a measured length of time, which is likely to focus attention on the beginning and ending of the action or state. (In the corpus there are only 7 tokens of "por un rato" adjacent before or after a preterit or imperfect, but 6 of these involve the preterit.) Other expressions I've moved to the preterit column because of their correlation in the corpus are "durante" (following the verb — 94%), "varias veces" (91%) "nunca" (73%) and "tantas veces" and "muchas veces", both weakly favoring the preterit at 62% and 61% respectively.

I have deleted "en ese momento", "siempre", and "mucho" from both lists as being too weakly correlated with their indicated verb tense (51%, 56%, and 58% respectively). "En ese momento" does focus on a moment, but that moment can just as well be within the duration of the action or state (imperfect) as at its beginning or end (preterit). I've deleted "de momento" ("for the time being, for now") as too rarely used with past tenses to be useful here.

I've added 6 expressions to the preterit list: "hoy" (80%), "luego" (83%), "[number] veces" (78%), "tan pronto como" (78%), "después que" (87%), and "desde que" (77%). To the imperfect list, I've added "todavía" (85%) and "ya" (67% with imperfect, even without counting the "había" etc. of the pluperfect).Kotabatubara (talk) 05:54, 8 February 2011 (UTC)

Idiomatic English[edit]

I'm reverting many of the 19 June 2011 revisions by because they replaced idiomatic English with stilted or ungrammatical forms.

  • "Comprender" is usually translated "understand". English "comprehend" doesn't reflect the ordinary conversational register of Spanish "comprender".
  • Contractions such as "I'm" for "I am", etc. are the normal way that English is spoken. In speech, the uncontracted forms are used only in sermons and other formal orations, or for emphasis. They are not a faithful translation of the Spanish examples (which are in the conversational register). Run Google searches on "I'm travelling" and "I am travelling" to see which one is more numerous.
  • The title "Mr." (Mr. Ruiz) is rarely spelled out as "Mister". Compare "Mr. Smith" (17.3 million Google hits) and "Mister Smith" (232,000).
  • People named Eduardo are called Eduardo in English nowadays, not Edward. Names are rarely translated.
  • "Entró" and "came in" are good conversational equivalents; "entered" is of a higher register, and more rarely used. Google searches support this.
  • Spanish "tranquilo" is conversational; English "calm" is conversational; English "tranquil" is stilted, bookish language, not a good equivalent for "tranquilo".
  • "That'll be Fabio" -- this contracted form is much more likely than "That will be..." when it acts as the "future of probablility".
  • "Latin America" includes countries where Spanish is not much spoken, e.g. Brazil. "Spanish America" is a more frequent expression than "Hispanic America".
  • "It rained much" is of doubtful grammaticality. "Much" is normally used only in "non-assertive" sentences (negatives and interrogatives). "It rained a lot" is the grammatical, normal way to say "Ha llovido mucho". You can also say "It rained a great deal", but not "It rained much".
  • "Let's eat!" is the only way to say "¡Comamos!" in English. The uncontracted form "Let us eat" is likely to be heard as a request for permission.
  • "Commoner" is a noun (a person not of the nobility). Make "common" comparative with "more". A Google search bears this out.
  • There is no such word as "ereyesterday". And "ere" is archaic. "Yesternight" is also archaic.
  • "Thrice" is virtually archaic.
  • "I bathed": 319,000 Google hits. "I had a bath": 1.08 million. "I took a bath": 2.03 million.
  • "I want that the doors be closed" is not grammatical English.

Kotabatubara (talk) 05:31, 20 June 2011 (UTC)

Tables on "vos" negative imperative are contradictory[edit]

The table headed "Negative imperative (imperativo negativo)" shows the conjugational ending for vos without final s's: -e, -a, and -a for ar, er, and ir verbs respectively.

The table headed "Negative command forms of the verb comer" shows the conjugational ending for vos with two options for this er verb, both with a final s: "¡No comas!" or "¡No comás!"

I think the second table is probably correct. Could someone please make the appropriate corrections? Thanks. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:34, 5 May 2012 (UTC)

There is no information about Spanish principal parts here[edit]

Will this information be added in the future? Jarble (talk) 18:19, 27 January 2013 (UTC)

The term "principal parts" is much used in the tradition of English grammar, to help learners keep track of irregular verbs like "go"/"went"/"gone" (as opposed to regular ones like "help"/"helped"/"helped"). For English it is a practical concept, because the forms that change are seen as whole words. But in Spanish the forms that change are the "stems" of verbs (which are bound to "endings"). So the information you are looking for is in the article, but it is called by other terms, such as "stem-changing". Kotabatubara (talk) 20:12, 27 January 2013 (UTC)
I'm deleting the note at the top of the article that says "This article is missing information about principal parts of Spanish verbs" etc. "Principle parts" are not part of the Spanish grammatical tradition. See the article "Principal parts", where it says "In Spanish, verbs are traditionally held to have only one principal part, the infinitive, by which one can classify the verb into one of three conjugation paradigms (according to the ending of the infinitive, which may be -ar, -er or -ir)." Kotabatubara (talk) 21:04, 16 September 2013 (UTC)

comí / he comido[edit]

"Esta mañana comí huevos y pan tostado" doesn't sound good to me (a Spanish speaker from Spain). I would say: "Esta mañana he comido huevos y pan tostado" and: "Ayer comí huevos y pan tostado" -- (talk) 12:01, 5 February 2013 (UTC)

The sentence is OK for Latin America and the Canary Islands. Jotamar (talk) 18:57, 5 February 2013 (UTC)

Spanish voice information missing?[edit]

There is nothing here about how Spanish inflects it's verbs with voice. I, not being a Spanish learner or speaker, have no idea how it works. The current section just describes a very general definition for Voice, not how spanish inflects its verbs with Active or Passive Voice. Frozenfire71 (talk) 23:33, 6 January 2017 (UTC)

Spanish verbs don't inflect for voice, they just use an auxiliary verb for the passive voice, as explained in the page, section The Passive. If there is something not clear enough in that section, please let us know. --Jotamar (talk) 15:03, 7 January 2017 (UTC)


imperative of 'go' for vos[edit]

"Used because the general norm in the voseo imperative is to drop the final -d and add an accent; however, if this were done, the form would be í"

What is this intended to mean? It reads like a tangle of conflations (infinitive-fixation where it doesn't apply, i.e. suppletion; prosody and orthography "add an accent"...) and maybe -- it's difficult to decipher -- invoking teleology where there is none (because... if this were done...). Can someone help to sort this out? Barefoot through the chollas (talk) 20:40, 25 December 2019 (UTC)