conservar and preservar

zeppo

Senior Member
USA
As best I can tell...
to preserve > conservar (Spain)
to preserve > conservar OR preservar (Latin America)
preservar > to protect, defend (Spain)
preservar > to protect, defend (Latin America); OR to preserve, maintain (Latin America)

When I go to SpanishDict and put in "preserve" it gives "conserver" as the primary translation. I believe this dictionary is more geared to the usage of Spain. The word reference dictionary makes reference to Latin American usage. But it doesn't really indicate how much more people in L Am will choose preservar where conservar woiuld be used in Spain. Is it more common for people in L America to use preservar in these circumstance rather than conserver, or would they still more often use conserver?

I thought maybe I could google conservar and preservar and find a discussion over the distinctions between these verbs, but no such luck.
 
  • donbeto

    Senior Member
    Eng (Canada)
    If you enter 'preserve' into Google translate, the usage bars for preservar and conservar are equal (and the highest), with proteger next. Not sure whether Google reflects Euro or LatinAm Spanish.
     

    autrex2811

    Banned
    Español-castellano, son lo mismo
    As best I can tell...
    to preserve > conservar (Spain)
    to preserve > conservar OR preservar (Latin America)
    preservar > to protect, defend (Spain)
    preservar > to protect, defend (Latin America); OR to preserve, maintain (Latin America)

    When I go to SpanishDict and put in "preserve" it gives "conserver" as the primary translation. I believe this dictionary is more geared to the usage of Spain. The word reference dictionary makes reference to Latin American usage. But it doesn't really indicate how much more people in L Am will choose preservar where conservar woiuld be used in Spain. Is it more common for people in L America to use preservar in these circumstance rather than conserver, or would they still more often use conserver?

    I thought maybe I could google conservar and preservar and find a discussion over the distinctions between these verbs, but no such luck.

    Saludos.

    En lo personal, no hago sinonimia entre "preservar" y "conservar" cuando a "proteger" se refiere.

    Lo preservó / protegió / resguardó del peligro y del daño que entonces podía recibir.

    Saludos.
     

    zeppo

    Senior Member
    USA
    Saludos.

    En lo personal, no hago sinonimia entre "preservar" y "conservar" cuando a "proteger" se refiere.

    Lo preservó / protegió / resguardó del peligro y del daño que entonces podía recibir.

    Saludos.

    Yes, this my understanding, as best I can from what I've read. Both Spain and L. Am. seem to be on the same page in this regard.

    But there is apparently not much use of "preserver" in Spain for the other uses of preserve, where in Spain "conservar" becomes the verb of choice (and more exclusively used) whereas in L. Am. "preserver" may still be used. So as best I can tell, there are uses of the word "preserve" where in L Am both preserver and conservar may be used where in Spain they would only use conservar. But in those particular circumstances where the Spaniards would not use preserver, are they using it a lot in L Am, even moreso than conserver, or the same amount, or just some of the time? This I'm not sure of.

    The usage meter that donbeto refers to on Google Translate is very interesting. I've never noticed it before and I think it can be a helpful tool. My guess is that it lumps together the usage of both L Am and Spain, but it will still be a helpful indicator.

    I will try to come up with a number of examples of uses of "to preserve" as used in English later as duvija suggested and see if they can help sort things out.

    thanks, all.
     

    Cheeky-Monkey

    Senior Member
    Castellano
    En España se usan las dos, tanto 'preservar' como 'conservar', quizás dependiendo del contexto se tienda a usar una más que la otra pero son sinónimos.
     

    When the cat's away...

    Senior Member
    Spain - English
    Pero hay que tener cuidado cuando se usan las variantes de estas palabras, ya que pueden desembocar en False Friends embarazosos:
    Preservative is not preservativo but conservante (which is not conservative. This would be conservador.) Preservativo is condom.:warning::rolleyes:
     
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