Wednesday, March 4, 2020
10 Facts About Spanish Conjunctions
10 Facts About Spanish Conjunctions Here are 10 facts about conjunctions that will be useful as you learn Spanish: 1. Conjunctions are a type of connecting word. Conjunctions make up one of the parts of speech and are used to connect sentences, phrases, or words with each other. Generally, a conjunction will link two words, phrases, or sentences of the same type, such as a noun with a noun or a sentence with another sentence. These sample sentences demonstrative just a few of the ways this part of speech can be used: asÃ que (so): Estoy enferma, asÃ que no puedo ir a la playa. (Im sick, so I cant go to the beach.)con el fin de que (so, with the goal of): Ella estudiaba con el fin de que sea doctor. (She studied with the goal of being a doctor.)o (or): Ã ¿TÃ © o cafÃ ©? (Tea or coffee?)porque (because): GanÃ © porque soy inteligente. (I won because I am smart.)si (if): Si voy a la tienda, comprarÃ © un pan. (If I go to the store, I will buy a loaf of bread.)y (and): Me gustan el chocolate y la vainilla. (I like chocolate and vanilla.) 2. Conjunctions can be classified in a variety of ways. One common scheme classifies conjunctions as coordinating (linking two words, sentences or phrases of equal grammatical status), subordinating (making the meaning of a clause dependÃ on another clause or sentence), and correlative (coming in pairs). Other classification schemes for Spanish list a dozen or more types of conjunctions such as conjunciones adversativas (adversative conjunctions such as but or pero that set up a contrast), conjunciones condicionales (conditional conjunctions such as if or si that set up a condition) and conjunciones ilativas (illative conjunctions such as por eso or therefore that are used in explaining the reason for something). 3. Conjunctions can be made up of more than one word. Spanish abounds with short phrases that are used as conjunctions and function as a single word. Examples include sin embargo (nevertheless), a causa de (because), por lo tanto (therefore), para que (in order that), and aun cuando (even if). (Note that the translations given here and throughout this article arent the only ones possible.) 4. Two of the most common conjunctions change form when coming before certain words. Y, which usually means and, changes to e when it comes before a word that starts with the sound of i. And o, which usually means or, changes to u when it comes before a word starting with the sound of o. For example, we would write palabras u oraciones (words or sentences) instead of palabras o oraciones and niÃ ±os u hombres (boys or men) instead of niÃ ±os o hombres. This change of y and o is similar to the way a becomes an before certain words in English, in order to help keep the sound of the first word from disappearing into the second. As with English a becoming and, the change is based on pronunciation rather than spelling. 5. Certain conjunctions are usually or always followed by a clause with a verb in the subjunctive mood. Examples include a fin de que (in order to) and a condiciÃ ³n de que (provided that). 6. The very common conjunction que often doesnt have to be translated to English but is essential in Spanish. Que as a conjunction usually means that as in the sentence Creo que estaban felices (I believe that they were happy). Note how that sentence could also be translated without the that: I believe they were happy. But the que remains essential to the Spanish sentence. The que in such sentences should not be confused with que as a relative pronoun, which follows different grammatical rules and cannot be omitted in translation. 7. A conjunction can come at the beginning of a sentence. Although a conjunction is a linking word, it doesnt always come between the two clauses or words linked. An example is si, the word for if, which often is used to begin a sentence. It also is acceptable to begin a sentence with y, the word for and. Often, y starts a sentence to provide emphasis. For example, Ã ¿Y las diferencias entre tÃ º y yo? might be translated as What about the differences between you and me? 8. Many of the words that function as conjunctions can also function as other parts of speech. For example, luego is a conjunction in Pienso, luego existo (I think, therefore I am) but an adverb in Vamos luego a la playa (Were going to the beach later). 9. Distributive conjunctions are made up of two words that are separated by other words. Among these is o ... o, which usually means either ... or as in O Ã ©l o ella puede firmarlo (Either he or she can sign it). Also common is ni ... ni as in No soy ni la primera ni la Ã ºltima (I am neither the first nor the last). 10. Some conjunctions are used in explaining when or where something occurs. The most common ones are cuando and donde, respectively. Example: Recuerdo cuando me dijiste donde pudiera encontrar la felicidad (I remember when you told me where I could find happiness).