What do you consider most difficult about the Spanish language?

Discussion in 'Spanish-English Grammar / Gramática Español-Inglés' started by tvdxer, Jan 23, 2006.


What's the most difficult aspect of Spanish for you?

  1. Subjunctive

  2. Pronunciation

  3. Ser vs Estar

  4. Imperfect vs Preterite

  5. Prepositions

  6. Pronouns

  7. Spelling (no way!)

    0 vote(s)
  8. Other

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  1. tvdxer Senior Member

    Minnesota, U.S.A.
    Minnesota, U.S.A. - English
    What do you find to be the hardest part of learning Spanish?

    Personally I think it is the varying prepositions that need to be used after different verbs.
  2. belén

    belén Ex-Moderator

    Spanish, Spain, Catalan, Mallorca
    Don't you think that adding a poll distorts your question, as it is completely subjective to your opinions on it...

    Maybe it is better that people just comments on their own difficulties, and isn't force to choose one of your options.

    My opinion,

  3. natasha2000

    natasha2000 Senior Member

    I agree with Belen... You see, normally, the most difficult thing to learn in one language depends on the person who learns it. Normally, the most difficult things to learn are the ones you don't have in your own language.
    For example, for me, both in English and Spanish, the most difficult thing is to learn the use of articles, since my native language does not have articles. And you do not have this on your list, therefore, I cannot vote.

    Besides the articles, I also find difficult subjunctive and ser/estar (these two do not exist in my language, either) as well as prepositions (prepositions both in Spanish and English), since each language has its own way to use them...
  4. Dr. Quizá

    Dr. Quizá Senior Member

    Esuri - Huelva York.
    Spain - Western Andalusian Spanish.
    I guess the harder part for most foreigners are the tons, and tons, and tons AND TONS of verb forms! Modes, reflexiveness, persons and conjunction, lots of irregular verbs, auxiliars, compound forms, related prepositions... :eek:
  5. irisheyes0583 Senior Member

    San José, Costa Rica
    English (USA)
    For me, hands down, it's the prepositions! They absolutely kill me!!!
  6. alvarezp Senior Member

    Give him a break. He put "other". :)

    I have to say this in Spanish, please help me translate it: Being a native Spanish speaker, the most difficult for me has been... "escoger el uso del pretérito simple (o pluscuamperfecto) del modo subjuntivo contra el pospretérito (potencial simple) del modo indicativo, cuando estoy usando el verbo haber".

    (That has been one of the most difficult phrases I had needed to translate, BTW)
  7. blancalaw

    blancalaw Senior Member

    Detroit, Michigan
    USA, English
    The most difficult thing about Spanish? I would say the vocabulary words, the false cognates, the accent marks, the 106 different forms of one verb, the male and female aspects of the language, the prepositions, the sentance structure, the pronunciation, being consistant with all the little rules you have to remember while trying to talk at a normal pace so as not to seem like a retard. EVERYTHING ABOUT IT IS HARD!!! :eek: hehehe but even though I have banged my head a number of times frustrated by my stupid repeating errors, :confused: I still return with an unending torturous passion to master this magnificent language. :thumbsup: :)
  8. diegodbs

    diegodbs Senior Member

    Hola, blancalaw
    ¿de verdad consideras que la pronunciación es difícil en español? Son sólo unas reglas muy sencillas y que no tienen excepción.:)

    Y con los acentos pasa lo mismo, son cuatro reglas y poco más. :)

    En todo lo demás de acuerdo contigo.
  9. blancalaw

    blancalaw Senior Member

    Detroit, Michigan
    USA, English

    Entiendo como es la pronunciacion, solo me cuesta mover la boca como un nativo, en respeto a las rr, especialemente rp, rt, y la r antes de otro consonante.
  10. SpiceMan Senior Member

    Osaka 大阪
    Castellano, Argentina
    Siendo nativo, lo más difícil es explicárselo a los extranjeros :D:D:D:D
    Aunque creo que termine aprendiendo más yo que los extranjeros
  11. jacinta Senior Member

    USA English
    The articles, no doubt. I still make errors every time I open my mouth. Those darn el and la words! and I change o´s to a´s and vise versa.
  12. cirrus

    cirrus Senior Member

    UK English
    The biggies for me are por y para then the subjunctive, the difference in the tense structures and the fact that Spanish often puts an article where we wouldn't have one in English.
  13. Dr. Quizá

    Dr. Quizá Senior Member

    Esuri - Huelva York.
    Spain - Western Andalusian Spanish.
    Vocabulary? English vocabulary is very similar to the Spanish one! I'm learning German and I'm amazed to see that Eng. and Sp. vocabularies are much more similar then Eng. and Ger. Not the older and more basic words (water- Wasser, the-der/das/die, I-ich, you-du, cold-kuhl...), but the other words. Just look the words you wrote and I underlined: they are very similar in Eng. and Sp! :eek: Maybe it's a bit difficult to master, but it's easy to understand :)
  14. Calario Senior Member

    Spain Spanish
    Creo que lo más difícil para un extranjero en España es decir "Hasta luego" ¡no conozco a casi ninguno que lo pueda decir con naturalidad! :)
  15. jess oh seven

    jess oh seven Senior Member

    UK/US, English
    si tu lengua materna es el inglés, que la pronunciación del español te cuesta... bueno, la concordancia entre la pronunciación y la ortografía es muy alta, pero nos cuesta fisicamente pronunciar unas cosas... ;) llevo ocho años estudiando el español y todavía no me sale la "rr"... (bueno, puedo pronunciarla A VECES, y siempre me extraña)

    para mí, lo más difícil es el subjuntivo y preposiciones, que no siempre son iguales que las inglesas... (además de la "rr"!!)
  16. jess oh seven

    jess oh seven Senior Member

    UK/US, English
    con acento maño, mejor! más como portugués! stalogo! :) i love saying it.
  17. Outsider Senior Member

    Portuguese (Portugal)
    For me, it's the vocabulary, because I'm still not very proficient in Spanish, as I've never studied it formally. I often find myself lost for words, and every once in a while I stumble on a false friend.
  18. jess oh seven

    jess oh seven Senior Member

    UK/US, English
    this sounds stupid, but if you sort of smile a bit while you're speaking spanish, it REALLY helps. it's a very articulated language, while english seems almost slurry in comparison.
  19. Calario Senior Member

    Spain Spanish
    ¡Tú si que sabes!
  20. tvdxer Senior Member

    Minnesota, U.S.A.
    Minnesota, U.S.A. - English
    I added "Other" for a reason, Belen. I just put the ones that have seemed to be most common to me up there.
  21. tvdxer Senior Member

    Minnesota, U.S.A.
    Minnesota, U.S.A. - English
    The nice thing about Spanish is that not only are the big words are similar to English big words, but that many of the everyday words in Spanish have an "educated" cognate in English.


    dientes = dental
    mano = manual
    cuerpo = coroporal, corpus
    ver = video
    mirar = mirror
    verdad = verify, verification, verity, etc.
    tener = tenacious
    hablar = fable
    ser = essence
    estar = state
    morir = mortal, (rigor) mortis
    amar = amorous, amiable
    amigo = amicus
    cocinar = cuisine
    oir = audio (OK, that's stretching it)
  22. flaze Junior Member

    Catania, Sicilia
    English -UK
    Se me hace que mucha gente aquí están olvidando que al fondo el español es una idioma coma cualquier otra.

    Nadie preocupa por cada palabra que sale de su boca en Ingles cuando es su idioma nativo, pero tan pronto que empiecen de aprender un otra idioma, lo tratan como si fuera algo elevado y más allá que la mente puede entender. Yo ni siquiera sé todos las palabras de Ingles, ¡pero claro que lo hablo con fluidez!

    Si tuviera que dar un consejo más útil que pudiera, sería que se relaje y que se vaya a España o a Mexico y vivir allá, HABLANDO la idioma todos las días. ¿Como vean? ;-)
  23. Istriano

    Istriano Senior Member

    Pronouns are very complicated, especially that personal A thing for accusative,
    and double clitics for dative. Also, abundant pronominalization (comérselo).
    In this sense, Portuguese is closer to English, than to Spanish
    especially Brazilian Portuguese, we just like avoiding reflexive/pronominal verbs, and Spanish likes using reflexive/pronominal verbs whenever possible.

    for example we use it like in English: you (você), I saw you (Eu vi você), I gave it to you (Eu dei isso para você), I wash my hands (Eu lavo minhas mãos).

    So this would be the most difficult for me: pronouns (especially direct object and indirect object case), clitics, doubling of them, so many redundancies, and too many reflexive forms, and
    ethical dative...Very complicated.

    Subjunctive is a breeze, compared to pronouns, clitics and the like ;)
    Prepositions are not that difficult, Spanish likes using A (like old Portuguese) in many cases where we use other prepositions in the modern language. :)
    (Just to get us into that clitics doubling thing so abundant in Spanish :) ; I try to avoid A whenever possible: entrar en, tener miedo de :); I hope they won't ban them in favor of A anytime soon :p).

    Also, Spanish has so many irregular verbs, much more than Portuguese and English, and on pair with Italian. Even errar is irregular: yerro, oh well. :)
    But once you've learned them by heart, there should be no problems with them.

    Un abrazo a todos.
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2011
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