Lesson 13:
Impersonal Verbs / The Adverb

Impersonal Verbs / The Adverb

Gustar (to like)

Example:

I like coffee.
She likes shoes.

Examine in detail these sentences:

I like coffee.
I = subject of sentence
like = verb
coffee= direct object
She likes shoes.
She = subject of sentence
likes = verb
shoes = direct object

Gustar(to please) is used to express “to like”.

Example:

Me gusta la película.
I like the movie.

La película me gusta.
Literally: The film pleases me.

Te gustan los dibujos animados.
You like the cartoons.

Los dibujos animados te gustan.
Literally: The cartoons please you.

Nos gusta nadar.
We like to swim.

Nadar nos gusta.
Literally: To swim pleases us.

NOTE: While it is more common to place the thing that is liked (noun or verb) after the verb “gustar”, it may also precede the verb.

“Gustar” is preceded by an indirect object pronoun. The form of “gustar” agrees with the subject, which generally follows it.

This is the way to conjugate the verb “gustar”:

a mi me gusta/gustan
a ti te gusta/gustan
a él/a ella le gusta/gustan
a nosotros nos gusta/gustan
a ellos/a ellas les gusta/gustan
a ustedes les gusta/gustan
Example:

Te gusta la fiesta.
You like the party.

Te gustan las fiestas.
You like the parties.

Nos gusta la canción.
We like the song.

Nos gustan las canciones.
We like the songs.

Me gusta bailar.
I like to dance.

NOTE: if the thing liked is not a noun but an action expressed by a verb in the infinitive, “gustar” is used in the third person singular.

To clarify the indirect object pronouns “le” and “les”, or to give emphasis, the indirect object normally precedes the indirect object pronoun.

Example:

A Tina no le gusta volar.
Tina doesn´t like to fly.

A los estudiantes no les gustan los exámenes.
The students don´t like examinations.

A Cándida le gusta el pastel.
Candida likes the cake.

A mí me gusta dormir.
I like to sleep.

Other verbs like Gustar.

Encantar, fascinar (to love)

Example:

Me encantan los conciertos.
I love concerts.

Parecer (to seem)

Example:

La película nos pareció corta.
The film seemed short to us.

Los cuentos nos parecieron aburridos.
The stories seemed boring to us.

NOTE: Since “parecer” is usually followed by an adjective, the adjective must agree in number and gender with the item described.

Doler (to be painful, to cause sorrow)

Example:

Me duele la cabeza.
I have a headache.

Faltar (to be lacking, to need )

Example:

Me faltan cinco dólares.
I’m missing (lacking) five dollars.

Quedar (to remain to someone, to have left)

Example:

Le queda un día de vacaciones.
He has one day of vacation left.

Tocar (to be one’s turn)

Example:

A ti te toca sacar la basura.
It’s your turn to take out the garbage.

Apocope adjective:

Some adjectives lose the final “o” when they are before a masculine singular noun.

Example:

Uno:
Hay un hombre en el techo.

There’s a man on the roof.

Bueno:
Juan es buen trabajador.

John is a good worker.

Malo:
Él dio un mal consejo a José.

He gave bad advice to Joseph.

Primero:
El primer mes del año es enero.

The first month of the year is January.

Tercero:
Ella vive en el tercer piso.

She lives on the third floor.

Alguno:
Ella tiene algún problema.

She has a problem.

Ninguno:
Ningún estudiante vino a la escuela hoy.

No student came to school today.

These adjectives retain their original shape when they are after the noun.

Example:

Es un restaurante malo.
It is a bad restaurant.

Es un hotel bueno.
It is a good hotel.

Uno, primero, tercero, alguno and ninguno retain the “o” when using the preposition “de” before the masculine plural noun.

Example:

Él es uno de mis amigos.
He is one of my friends.

Juan es el tercero de la familia.
John is the third in the family.

Alguno de ellos escondió el libro.
One of them hid the book.

The adjective “grande” switches to “gran” when it is before a concrete noun singular and changes the meaning.

Example:

Mi amiga es una gran mujer. – Attribute
My friend is a great woman.

Antigua es una gran ciudad. – Importance
Antigua is a great city.

Él tiene una casa grande. – Description
He has a big house.

San or Santo is used when they refer to a person chosen by God. San is used before a singular masculine noun, except for Tomás, Domingo y Tomé, which uses Santo.

Example:

San JuanSaint John
Santo DomingoSaint Domingo
San PedroSaint Peter
Santo TomásSaint Thomas
San PabloSaint Paul

“Ciento” switches to “cien” when it is before a plural noun (masculine or feminine), and before thousand and million.

Example:

Yo compré cien libros.
I bought a hundred books.

Ella tiene cien pares de zapatos.
She has a hundred pairs of shoes.

Hay cien libras de café en la caja.
There are one hundred pounds of coffee in the box.

Ella ganó cien millones de dólares.
She won one hundred million dollars.

The Adverb

It is a word variable that can modify or qualify a verb, an adjective or another adverb, and written after a verb.

Classification of the Adverbs:

Example:

Time: (tiempo – ¿cuándo?)
hoy, anteayer, mañana, anoche, antenoche, ayer, tarde, pronto, nunca, jamás, antaño, después, luego, entonces, temprano, presto, siempre, todavía, ya, aún, mientras
Place: (lugar – ¿dónde?)
cerca, lejos, alrededor, afuera, adentro, arriba, abajo, adelante, encima, debajo, aquí, acá, ahí, allí, allá, derecho, detrás, a la derecha, a la izquierda, al lado de, delante, encima, frente, hacia, al otro lado, alrededor, en frente, en, entre, a través de, por
Quantity: (cantidad – ¿cuánto?)
mucho, poco, más, muy, harto, demasiado, tanto, tan, menos
Doubt: (duda)
acaso, quizá, quizás
Affirmation: (afirmación)
sí, también, cierto
Negation: (negación)
no, nunca, jamás, tampoco
Adverbs of manner: (adverbios de modo)
bien, mal, mejor, peor, así, apenas, aprisa, peor, despacio, mejor

Some adverbs ending in -mente

Formation: feminine singular adjective + mente

Example:

Cierta Ciertamente Certainly
Lenta Lentamente slowly
Rápida Rápidamente Quickly

The adjectives that ending in a consonant or “-e”, add only “-mente”

Example:

Amable Amablemente Nicely
Cortès Cortésmente Politely
Útil Útilmente Usefully

Some adverbs can be also form with prepositions + nouns.

Example:

Con atención Atentamente Attentively
Con cariño Cariñosamente Lovingly
Con cuidado Cuidadosamente Carefully
Con inteligencia Inteligentemente Intelligently
En secreto Secretamente Secretly
En seguida Seguidamente/Inmediatamente Then / Immediately
Por lo general Generalmente Generally
Sin necesidad Innecesariamente Needlessly
Sin utilidad Inútilmente Uselessly

When in the sentence there are two adverbs, the ending -mente is using only in the last one.

Example:

El niño escribe rápida y claramente.
The boy writes quickly and clearly.

Los estudiantes estudian responsable y diligentemente.
The students study responsibly and diligently.