The Challenges of Adverbs IV

In this article, we will continue to examine the challenges posed by the adverbs ‘muy´ and ‘mucho´ in Spanish translation. The previous one concluded by drawing attention to the fact that the Spanish translation for ‘so much´ is ‘tanto´, and ‘tan mucho´ is an expression that does not exist in Spanish.

The above-mentioned rule has its exception, namely, that when an adverb is being used to modify an adjective, then it is customary to use ‘tan´ and not ‘tanto.´ The correct Spanish translation for the English expression ‘The road is so long´ will read as ‘Es tan largo el camino´.

Though ‘bastante´ (enough) and ‘demasiado´ (too much) are actually adverbs, they are often used as adjectives. In the case of such usage, translators must ensure that the words are in agreement with the verb of the sentence.

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We will conclude this discussion with an examination of the use of the infinitive form ´tener´ in Spanish. ‘tener´ is the Spanish equivalent of the English infinitive verb form of ‘to be´. The basic formulas for constructing a sentence are the same in English and Spanish: subject + appropriate form of ‘to be´ + adjective/adverb and adjective in English sentences and subject + appropriate form of ‘tener´ + noun/adjective and noun (in Spanish sentences).

If Spanish translators can keep the formula in mind, they will reduce the probability of making mistakes when working on a Spanish translation.

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