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Stem-changing verbs:e to ie

Spanish verbs are composed of a stem and a root (-ar, -er and -ir). Some irregular verbs change their stem in the present tense, indicative mode. When a verb is conjugated, and e is the last stem vowel, and it's stressed, e changes to ie. However, in the third (nosotros) and second-person (vosotros) plural forms, there is NO stem change because the stress does not fall on the stem that contains e. For a fully conjugated list, click on an underlined Spanish verb.

NOTE their endings are regular in all forms.

Pronoun Pensar/ to think Querer/ to want Preferir / to prefer
yo/ I pienso quiero prefiero
tú/ you piensas quieres prefieres
él, ella, Ud./ he, she, you piensa quiere prefiere
nosotros/ we pensamos queremos preferimos
vosotros/ you pensáis queréis preferís
ellos/ they piensan quieren prefieren


Other verbs in the same category:
For a full conjugation, click on a verb Cerrar/ to close, comenzar/ to start, empezar/ to begin, entender/ to understand, mentir/ to lie, negar/ to deny, perder/ to lose.

Stem-changing verbs: o to ue

Certain verbs change their stem in the present tense. When the last stem vowel is a stressed o, it changes to ue. Also note that stem vowel is NOT stressed in nosotros and vosotros; therefore, the o does NOT change to ue. Their endings are regular in all forms. For a fully conjugated list, click on an underlined Spanish verb.

Pronoun Almorzar/ to have lunch Poder/ to be able Dormir/ to sleep
yo/ I almuerzo puedo duermo
tú/ you almuerzas puedes duermes
él, ella, Ud./ he, she, you almuerza puede duerme
nosotros/ we almorzamos podemos dormimos
vosotros/ you almorzáis podéis dormís
ellos/ they almuerzan pueden duermen


Other verbs in the same category:
For a full conjugation, click on a verb contar/ to count, costar/ to cost (It's conjugated only in 3rd persons) devolver/ to return something, morir/ to die, mostrar/ to show, recordar/ to remember, soñar/ to dream about, sonar/ to ring, sound, volar/ to fly.

Stem-changing verbs: e to i

Verbs of the third conjugation group, -ir, change the stem vowel from e to i in the present tense, indicative mode. For these verbs, when e is stressed, and it's the last stem vowel, it changes to i. However, in nosotros and vosotros there is NO change. For a fully conjugated list, click on an underlined Spanish verb.

Pronoun Competir/ to compete Seguir/ to continue, follow
yo/ I compito sigo
tú/ you compites sigues
él, ella, Ud./ he, she, you compite sigue
nosotros/ we competimos seguimos
vosotros/ you competís seguís
ellos/ they compiten siguen


Other verbs in the same category:
For a full conjugation, click on a verb conseguir/ to obtain, corregir/ to correct, decir/ to say, tell, elegir/ to elect, choose, impedir/ to prevent, pedir/ to ask for, repetir/ to repeat, servir/ to serve

Irregular 1st person forms

The following verbs are irregular only in the first person singular of the present tense, indicative mode. The other conjugations (persons) are regular. For a fully conjugated list, click on an underlined Spanish verb.

Full conjugation Present, Indicative Mode
Conducir/ to drive conduzco, conduces, conduce, conducimos, conducís, conducen
Conocer/ to know conozco, conoces, conoce, conocemos, conocéis, conocen
Traducir/ to translate traduzco, traduces, traduce, traducimos, traducís, traducen
Hacer/ to do, make hago, haces, hace, hacemos, hacéis, hacen
Poner/ to put, place pongo, pones, pone, ponemos, ponéis, ponen
Salir/ to go out salgo, sales, sale, salimos, salís, salen
Traer/ to bring traigo, traes, trae, traemos, traéis, traen
Oír/ to hear oigo, oyes, oye, oímos, oís, oyen
Ver/ to see veo, ves, ve, vemos, veis, ven
Saber/ to know sé, sabes, sabe, sabemos, sabéis, saben



The subjunctive mode is used to express conjecture, emotion, uncertainty, subjectivity, influence, doubt, probability, or hypothesis that is yet unknown. Like Spanish, English has a subjunctive mode too. However, many speakers do NOT notice it because most of its forms are identical to the infinitive. There is a difference between the subjunctive and the indicative only in the singular she/he forms.

NOTE that the present indicative of the verb study is studies, but the present subjunctive is study, the form does NOT change spelling.


Present Indicative: Did you know that Juan studies every day?/ Sabías que Juan estudia todos los días?

Present Subjunctive: It is necessary that Juan study every day./ Es necesario que Juan estudie todos los días.


Regular verbs

To form the present subjunctive, remove the final -o from the first person singular (yo) of the present (indicative mode) and add the following endings:

Pronoun CComprar/ to buy Vender/ to sell Recibir / to receive
yo/ I compre venda reciba
tú/ you compres vendas recibas
él, ella, Ud./ he, she, you compre venda reciba
nosotros/ we compremos vendamos recibamos
vosotros/ you compréis vendáis recibáis
ellos/ they compren vendan reciban


a. NOTE that the irregular form in the first person singular (present tense, Subjunctive mode) is maintained throughout the entire conjugation as follows; that is the reason why the present tense is used instead of the infinitive form.

Infinitive Conjugated
Conducir/ to drive conduzca, conduzcas, conduzca, conduzcamos, conduzcáis, conduzcan
Conocer/ to know conozca, conozcas, conozca, conozcamos, conozcáis, conozcan
Traducir/ to translate traduzca, traduzcas, traduzca, traduzcamos, traduzcáis, traduzcan
Hacer/ to do, make haga, hagas, haga, hagamos, hagáis, hagan
Poner/ to put, place ponga, pongas, ponga, pongamos, pongáis, pongan
Salir/ to go out salga, salgas, salga, salgamos, salgáis, salgan
Traer/ to bring traiga, traigas, traiga, traigamos, traigáis, traigan
Oír/ to hear oiga, oigas, oiga, oigamos, oigáis, oigan
Ver/ to see vea, veas, vea, veamos, veáis, vean

b. Stem-changing verbs that end in -ir and have a diphthong ( e:ie, o:ue) have an additional change (e:i, o:u) in nosotros and vosotros forms (NOTE that in the present of the indicative mode, they do NOT change)

Pronoun Sentir/ to feel Dormir/ to sleep
yo/ I sienta duerma
tú/ you sientas duermes
él, ella, Ud./ he, she, you sienta duerma
nosotros/ we sintamos durmamos
vosotros/ you sintáis durmáis
ellos/ they sientan duerman

c. The following are irregular verbs in the present subjunctive:

Infinitive Conjugated
Saber/ to know sepa, sepas, sepa, sepamos, sepáis, sepan
Ser/ to be sea, seas, sea, seamos, seáis, sean
Ir/ to go vaya, vayas, vaya, vayamos, vayáis, vayan
Haber/ to have (auxiliary) haya, hayas, haya, hayamos, hayáis, hayan
Dar/ to give dé, des, dé, demos, deis, den
Estar/ to be esté, estés, esté, estemos, estéis, estén

d. Verbs that end in -car, -gar, and -zar have spelling change in the subjunctive to maintain the original sound of the consonant as follows:

Pronoun Cbuscar / to look for (c:qu) llegar/ to arrive (g:gu) cruzar / to cross (z:c)
yo/ I busque llegue cruce
tú/ you busques llegues cruces
él, ella, Ud./ he, she, you busque llegue cruce
nosotros/ we busquemos lleguemos crucemos
vosotros/ you busquéis lleguéis crucéis
ellos/ they busquen lleguen crucen

e. Stem-changing verbs that end in -ar and -er have the same changes in the subjunctive mode as in the present indicative. NOTE that stems do NOT change in nosotros and vosotros.

Pronoun Cpensar/ to think volver/ to come back
yo/ I piense vuelva
tú/ you pienses vuelvas
él, ella, Ud./ he, she, you peinse vuelva
nosotros/ we pensemos volvamos
vosotros/ you penséis volváis
ellos/ they piensen vuelvan

f. Stem-changing verbs that end in -ir and have e:i change in the entire conjugation as follows:

Infinitive Conjugated
Pedir/ to ask pida, pidas, pida, pidamos, pidáis, pidan


1. Except for its use in the main clauses to express commands, the Spanish subjunctive is used in a sentence that has at least 2 clauses, a main and a subordinate or dependent clause. The verb in the main clause determines the use of subjunctive or indicative mode in the subordinate clause. The most common conjunction used to join the two clauses is que (that).


· Espero que cambiemos el proveedor./ I hope (that) we switch supplier.

· El gerente duda que podamos cambiarlo./ The manager doubts (that) we canswitch him.

2. Generally the subjects of the main clause and the dependant clauses are different. However, if the subject of both clauses is the same, the infinitive is used instead of the subjunctive.


· El presidente espera que nosotrosvayamos./ The president hopesthatwe go.

· El presidenteespera ir./ The president hopes to go.



The active voice is the most commonly used in ordinary conversation, and it indicates that the subject performs the action as in the following examples:

· El contador preparó el formulario./ The accountant prepared the form.

· Le pagamos al corredor su comisión./ We paid the broker his commission.

The passive voiceis not frequently used in ordinary conversation, but it is used in writing, such as news broadcasting, newspapers, and formal speeches. In a passive sentence, the subject receives the action as in the following examples:

· El formulario fue preparado por el contador./ The form was prepared by the accountant.

· La comisión fue pagada por nosotros./ The commission was paid by us.


To form the passive voice, the verb ser/to be is used. The past participle functions as an adjective; therefore, it agrees with the gender and number of the subject it modifies.


· La comida + fue + preparada + por + el cocinero./ The food was prepared by the cook.

· Las comidas + fueron + preparadas + por + el cocinero./ The foods were prepared by the cook.

· El oleoducto + será + construido + por + Shell./ The pipeline will be constructed by Shell.

· Los oleoductos + serán + construidos + por + Shell./ The pipelines will be constructed by Shell.

**NOTE: When the superlative is used, the preposition de is used instead of por.


· Madre Teresa fue la más amada de todos./ Mother Teresa wasthe most loved by everyone.


To describe an action, the verb ser is used in the passive; however, to express the result of an action, the verb estar is used instead.


· El contrato fue escritoen inglés./ The contract was written in English (by someone).

· El libro está escrito en inglés./ The book is written in English (published in English).


Se + verb conjugated in the 3rd person singular or plural construction for passive voice is much more frequently used in conversations. This construction is equivalent to the English construction to be + past participle. Usually the verb precedes the subject.


· Se recaudará el impuesto al tabaco en todos los estados./ Tobacco tax will be collected in all states.

· Se ha aprobado el aumento al impuesto al alcohol./ The increase to the alcohol tax has been approved.

In Spanish, some sentences conjugated in the third person plural are equivalent to the passive se construction. Even though the following sentence is in active voice, ellos/ they implies passive voice. They is used in a general sense.


· Dicen que lloverá./ They say that it will rain.



Generally hacer means to do or to make. It is conjugated as a regular -er verb, except for yo, which ends in -go.

Pronoun Present Past Future Conditional
yo/ I hago hice haré haría
tú/ you haces hiciste harás harías
él, ella, Ud./ he, she, you hace hizo hará haría
nosotros/ we hacemos hicimos haremos haríamos
vosotros/you hacéis hicisteis haréis haríais
ellos, Uds./ they, you hacen hicieron harán harían


· ¿Qué hacen después de trabajar?/ What do you do after work?

· Los niños hacen la tarea./ The children are doing their homework.

· Estoy haciendo la comida./ I am making food.

· Ellos hacen la torta./ They are making the cake.


Tener is equivalent to the verb to have or to possess. It follows the pattern of e:ie stem-changing verbs, with the exception of yo/ I, which ends in -go.

Pronoun Present Past Future Conditional
yo/ I tengo tuve tendré tendría
tú/ you tienes tuviste tendrás tendrías
él, ella, Ud./ he, she, you tiene tuvo tendrá tendría
nos./ we tenemos tuvimos tendremos tendríamos
vos./you teneis tuvisteis tendréis tendríais
ellos, Uds./ they, you tienen tuvieron tendrán tendrían

1. Tener + que

This expression is equivalent to the English expression to have to (do something).


· Tengo que repetir cada ejemplo./ I have to repeat each example.

· Tuvimos que convencer a los inversionistas./ We had to convince the investors.

NOTE: Tener que is followed by an infinitive.

2. The simplest way of expressing possession is by using tener/ to have.


· Mi jefe tiene mucha experiencia./ My boss has a lot of experience.

· Tuvimos muchos fondos para invertir./ We had a lot of funds to invest.

3. In Spanish, tener is used for indicating age. On the other hand, in English the verb to be is used for telling age.


· Tengo 23 años./ I am 23 years old.

· Mi abuela tenía 88 años cuando falleció./ My grand-mother was 88 years old when she passed away.

4. Tener + noun

This expression is used for describing states, but in English to be is commonly used.

a. Tener calor/ to be hot

· Tengo mucho calor./ I am very hot.

b. Tener éxito/ to be successful

· Los productos importados tuvieron mucho éxito./ Imported goods were successful.

c. Tener frío/ to be cold

· Tuvimos mucho frío en las montañas./ We were very cold in the mountains.

d. Tener celos/ to be jealous

· Mi novio tiene celos de mi./ My boyfriend is jealous of me.

e. Tener cuidado/ to be careful

· Ten cuidado por las noches./ Be careful at night.

f. Tener hambre/ to be hungry

· Tengo tanta hambre que me comería un caballo./ I am so hungry that I could eat a horse.

g. Tener la culpa/ to be at fault

· Yo tengo la culpa./ I am at fault.

h. Tener miedo/ to be afraid, scared

· Tengo miedo de ir al dentista./ I am scared of going to the dentist.

i. Tener paciencia/ to be patient

· Mi hermano tiene mucha paciencia./ My brother is very patient.

j. Tener presente/ to keep in mind

Ten presente el consejo de mamá./ Keep in mind mother's advice.

k. Tener prisa/ to be in a hurry

· Apúrense que tengo mucha prisa./ Hurry up, I am in a big hurry.

l. Tener razón/ to be right, correct

· Tiene razón./ You're right.

m. Tener sed/ to be thirsty

· Tengo mucha sed./ I am very thristy.

n. Tener sueño/ to be sleepy

· El bebé tiene sueño./ The baby is sleepy.

o. Tener suerte/ to be lucky

· Tienes mucha suerte./ You are very lucky.

p. Tener vergüenza/ to be ashamed

· Tengo vergüenza de pedir cosas prestadas./ I am ashamed of borrowing things.

More expressions:

1. Tener que ver con/ to have to do with

· No tengo nada que ver con tus problemas./ I have nothing to do with your problems.

2. Tener catarro, resfrío/ to have a cold

· Tengo un resfrío terrible./ I have a terrible cold.

3. Tener derecho/ to have the right

· Tiene derecho a un abogado./ You have the right to an attorney.

4. Tener en cuenta/ to take into account

· Voy a tener en cuenta lo que me dijiste./ I will take into account what you told me.

5. Tener lugar/ to take place, to have space

· El concierto va a tener lugar en La Paz./ The concert is going to take place in La Paz.

· Tengo lugar para ti en mi auto./ I have space for you in my car.

6. Tener ganas de (+ infinitive)/ to feel like

· Tengo ganas de comer helado./ I feel like eating ice-cream.


The verb gustar is used to express likes and dislikes. Its literal translation is to be pleasing. The most common conjugation for gustar and other verbs in the same category (listed below) is the third person singular or plural. Usually, these types of verbs require the indirect object pronoun (IOP) at the beginning.

Singular IOP Plural IOP
yo/ I me nosotros (mas.), nosotras (fem.)/ we nos
tú / you (informal) te vosotros (mas.),vosotras (fem.), ustedes/ you les
él/ he, ella/ she, usted (formal)/ you le ellos, ellas/ they les


· Me gusta la música./I like music.

· Te gustan las almendras./ You like almonds.

· A ella le gustan los mariscos./ She likes seafood.

· Nos gustan los bebés./ We like babies.

· Les gusta bromear./ They like to joke around.

· Tú me gustas mucho./ I like you very much.

NOTE: It is common to place the direct object or infinitive after the verb gustar, which agrees with the person or thing being liked. Furthermore, the person who does the liking is the indirect object.

1. A + pronoun or noun

This expression is used to clarifythe meaning of a sentence when le is used, or to emphasize the indirect objects when there is duplication of indirect objects.


· A mamá le gusta cocinar./ Mom likes to cook. (Le is used forshe, he, and Ud.; therefore, to clarify the meaning of the sentence A+ mamá is used.)

· A mi prima y a mí nos gusta dormir./ My cousin and I like sleeping.

2. Gustar + reflexive verb

If gustar/ to like is followed by a reflexive verb, the corresponding reflexive pronoun is added to the infinitive. (Click here for more info. about reflexive verbs.)


· Nos gusta levantarnos tarde./ We like to get up late.

· Me gusta sepillarme el pelo./ I like to brush my hair.


When gustar / to like is followed by one or more infinitives (verbs not conjugated), the third person singular conjugation is used for gustar.


· A mi perro le gusta correr, nadar y saltar./ My dog likes to run, swim and jump.

· A mis perros les gusta comer, domir y ladrar./ My dogs like to eat, sleep and bark.

4. Other verbs in the same category are following:

1. Aburrir/ to bore

2. Asustar/ to scare

3. Disgustar/ to upset

4. Divertir/ to have fun

5. Doler/ to hurt

6. Encantar/ to delight, love

7. Enojar/ to get mad

8. Emocionar/ to be moved, touched

9. Faltar/ to lack, be missing

10. Fascinar/ to fascinate

11. Hacer falta/ to be necessary, to be in need of

12. Importar/ to matter

13. Interesar/ to interest

14. Molestar/ to bother, annoy

15. Parecer/ to seem

16. Preocupar/ to worry

17. Quedar/ to remain, stay

18. Sobrar/ to have extra

19. Sorprender/ to surprise

20. Tocar/ to be one's turn, to touch


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