Difference between European and Brazilian Portuguese?

Discussion in 'Português (Portuguese)' started by JLanguage, Mar 27, 2005.

  1. JLanguage Senior Member

    Georgia, US
    USA: American English, Learning Hebrew and Spanish
    To start the discussion I will include the following comparison:

    Todos os seres humanos nascem livres e iguais em dignidade e em direitos. Dotados de razão e de consciência, devem agir uns para com os outros em espírito de fraternidade.

    Brazilian Portuguese
    Todas as pessoas nascem livres e iguais em dignidade e direitos. São dotadas de razão e consciência e devem agir em relação umas às outras com espírito de fraternidade.

    So far it looks like there are differences in spelling and in vocabulary. What else is different?

    Please keep in mind that I don't speak Portuguese. Hope this thread wasn't done already
    Thanks in Advance,
  2. Marcio_Osorio Senior Member

    Recife-PE, Brazil
    Braz. Port.
    No, no one has done that thread yet.

    No major differences between one language and the other exist, but speakers of both languages somehow understand each other.

    Just out of curiosity, I did a net search for "Differences between Brazilian Portuguese and European Portuguese" and found 40 instances of it. Then I did the other way around... "... between European Portuguese and Brazilian Portuguese" and logged 90 instances of it.

    I think that Brzln P native speakers find European P native speakers' accent hard. But the latter, it seems, has never had that much trouble following the former's speech.

    As far as both paragraph examples go, this BP native speaker likes the EP example better. But I would substitute "seres humanos" for "pessoas" -- the fewer the words, the faster one reads them.
  3. Lems

    Lems Senior Member

    São Paulo
    Brazil - Brazilian Portuguese
    Quite an interesting topic, Jonathan! :thumbsup:

    Nope. It wasn’t. But it is easy to search for by using the “advanced search” feature under the “search” option above.

    Actually I don’t see differences among these periods, except (perhaps) for the prepositions used here: “em espírito de fraternidade” and “com espírito de fraternidade".

    I think the differences are similar to the American and British English… Europeans are rather formal and conservative whereas Americans (both English and Portuguese) are more casual.

    Lets see what our colleagues have to say about the subject.

    I’m curious here: how come you rose this thread not speaking Portuguese? :confused:

    I traveled all around this country and may assure you that this data processing stuff is an illusion that won’t last till the end of this year. The editor in charge of technical books of Prentice Hall, 1957.
  4. JLanguage Senior Member

    Georgia, US
    USA: American English, Learning Hebrew and Spanish
    I find differences between dialects fascinating. And perhaps one day I will find the time to learn Portuguese.
  5. Outsider Senior Member

    Portuguese (Portugal)
    I posted about these quotes in another thread you started. Both those texts would be equally understood by a Brazilian and a Portuguese person. They're just alternative translations. I don't understand why Omniglot decided to post two different translations of the same text.

    This being said, there are genuine differences between the two main varieties of Portuguese:

    - Spelling differences:

    a) European Portuguese retains some consonants that are no longer pronounced in words like acto, excepto, óptimo. The Brazilian spelling has eliminated those consonants.

    b) Some words that Brazilians pronounce with a closed vowel (written â, ê, ô) are pronounced with an open vowel in Portugal (written á, é, ó), and this is reflected in differing spellings.

    c) The Brazilian spelling distinguishes between a closed diphtong ei and an open diphtong éi. In Portugal, this distinction is not made, because both diphtongs are pronounced identically.

    - Differences of vocabulary: There are vast differences in vocabulary, and sometimes the same word may be employed differently in the two varieties.

    - Grammatical differences. The most significant ones seem to be:

    a) Regarding the use of personal pronouns. The pronoun tu is replaced with você in most of Brazil, whereas você tends to be avoided in Portugal. A gente replaces nós much more frequently in colloquial Brazilian Portuguese than in Portugal (although it can be found in both varieties).

    b) Regarding the distinction between third person subject pronouns and object pronouns. In colloquial Brazilian Portuguese, the subject pronouns ele(s), ela(s), você(s) are often used as objects, where o(s), a(s), lhe(s) would be used in Portugal.

    c) Regarding the placement of the clitic personal pronouns. In Portugal, the clitic personal pronouns can come after a verb under some circumstances (enclisis or mesoclisis): "Dê-me um cigarro", "Desculpe-me", "Pode dizer-me...?" They can also be placed before the auxiliary verb, in other circumstances: "Não me pode dizer...?"
    In colloquial Brazilian Portuguese, the tendency is to always place the clitic pronoun before the main verb, and between the auxiliary verb and the main verb, in compound tenses: "Me dê um cigarro", "Me desculpe", "Pode me dizer...?", "Não pode me dizer...?"

    d) Compound verb tenses of the form "estar + gerund" tend to be replaced with "estar a + infinitive" in most of Portugal.

    e) Regarding the use of prepositions. Brazilians sometimes replace the preposition a with em or para with verbs of motion. They occasionally eliminate prepositions or pronouns from verbs that are prepositional or pronominal ("reflexive") in Portugal.
  6. Lems

    Lems Senior Member

    São Paulo
    Brazil - Brazilian Portuguese
    What a fine explanation, Outsider!!! From now on I'll think of you as an "Insider", instead. :D

    Congrats :thumbsup:

    This “telephone” has too many inconveniences to seriously be considered a communication means.
    Western Union internal memo, 1876.
  7. Outsider Senior Member

    Portuguese (Portugal)
    Thanks, Lem. I was feeling inspired. :D
  8. onthebass Senior Member

    United States
    Yeah, that really was a great explanation Outsider.

    I'm helping with a verb book right now and we are doing a Portuguese version. We are debating over the differences of verb tense usages. For example, a brazilian told me you don't use the Present Perfect that often instead you just use Preterit.

    So if I wanted to say, "I've seen her three times this week."

    I would use, "Eu vi.", instead of "Tenho visto."

    Is this true? Is it the same in Portugal?
  9. Outsider Senior Member

    Portuguese (Portugal)
    It's true, and it is the same in Portugal. Our so-called "present perfect" really has a different value than the present perfect of English.
  10. onthebass Senior Member

    United States
    Thanks O!

    Another question:
    How do you say to shower/to take a shower in Portugal and Brazil?
  11. Outsider Senior Member

    Portuguese (Portugal)
    In Portugal: tomar um duche.
    In Brazil: tomar uma ducha, I believe.

    Or you can be less specific, and just say tomar um banho, "to take a bath".
  12. araceli Senior Member

    Buenos Aires
    Argentine, Spanish
    Pegar uma ducha usa-se também no Brasil.
  13. Lems

    Lems Senior Member

    São Paulo
    Brazil - Brazilian Portuguese
    "Tomar um chuveiro" (take a shower) is often used in Brazil.

    The stock market reached a plateau that seems permanent.
    Irving Fisher, Professor of Economy, Yale University, 1929, several days before the crash.
  14. onthebass Senior Member

    United States
    Ok, so the verb phrase tomar um(a) duche/a is not reflexive and noone uses the verb Duchar-se?
  15. Outsider Senior Member

    Portuguese (Portugal)
    I've never heard anyone say duchar-se. Only lavar-se, "to wash (oneself)" and banhar-se, "to bathe (oneself)" are reflexive, as far as I know. The shower does all the showering, after all.
  16. Marcio_Osorio Senior Member

    Recife-PE, Brazil
    Braz. Port.
    Me neither. Perhaps physicians may use it in their prescriptions. My copy of Novo Dicionário Eletrônico Aurélio versão 5.0 (New Aurélio Dictionary on CD v. 5.0) lists it as a legit transitive verb meaning arremessar um jorro de água, uma ducha, sobre (alguém); aplicar duchas a. (to administer or apply a douche to : DRENCH).

    It does not list it as an intransitive reflexive verb (duchar-se) (to take a douche).

    I, for one, cannot imagine myself saying out loud, "Menino, venha já tomar sua ducha -- agora!" or "Vou me duchar. Com licença." (Boy, you git yer *ss in for your douche now) and (Excuse me. I think I'll go douche now) respectively.

    Keep up the good work.
  17. Outsider Senior Member

    Portuguese (Portugal)
  18. Miki Ferreira New Member

    Portuguese Brazil
    First..there is some difference in the dialects spoken in Brazil.
    I am from the south, and i speak
    Tomar um banho. (Take a bath)
    Hehehe, no one speak that.....
    Duchar-se? No, no...
    And so, what is true?
    Se duchar
    ``I've seen her three times this weak``
    Translate, to the south brazilian portuguese
    Eu a vi tres vezes essa semana.

    Tenho visto não eh perfeito, pq ``Tenho``, dá a idéia de que a ação ainda continuará a ser
    fica ``Eu a tenho visto tres vezes por semana``
    Não só vi, como eh plausivel que ainda vá ver semana que vem
  19. Johannes Senior Member

    Natal, Brazil
    Dutch Netherlands
  20. Lems

    Lems Senior Member

    São Paulo
    Brazil - Brazilian Portuguese
    Seja bem-vinda ao fórum, Miki.

    Por favor use a acentuação correta para que os não nativos possam aprender adequadamente.


    Os fins não justificam os e-mails.
  21. fizzy_soda Senior Member

    Madison, Wisconsin
    English - USA
    I think the same could be said for Spanish from Spain and Spanish from Hispanoamérica. I am just starting Portuguese, so I don't have much to offer in that department, but I know while in Spain my use of the pretérito was often corrected and substituted with the present perfect. I remember saying I saw her at the bank (La vi allí), and my Spanish friend said it should be La he visto because the time I was refering to was more sooner than later.
  22. spielenschach Senior Member

    Portugal . Portuguese
  23. Denis555

    Denis555 Senior Member

    Cracóvia, Polônia
    Brazilian Portuguese
  24. loscuatrogatos New Member

    What are the key elements of written Brazilian Portuguese that distinguish it from European? What are the key grammatical differences?
  25. J. Bailica Senior Member

    Português - Portugal
    I don't know how to start! There are so many nuances, small differences, not so small differences and... worlds apart differences !!!

    But you can find a great deal of threads about it here.
    Have a look at this one (post 5 is a good example).
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2013
  26. Codinome Shlomo Senior Member

    Portuguese (Brazil)
    I guess written Brazilian Portuguese should be identical to written European Portuguese (except for the mute consonants and some differences between the diacritics. e.g. económico and econômico & facto and fato), especially with the Orthographic Agreement.
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2013
  27. Casmurro

    Casmurro Member

    Porto Alegre, Rio Grande do Sul
    Portuguese - Brazil
    Aos foreiros portugueses, só por curiosidade: como é o uso por aí do pronome "a gente" (como substituto do nós)? Aqui no Brasil esse pronome já contaminou tudo e todos, infelizmente.
  28. Denis555

    Denis555 Senior Member

    Cracóvia, Polônia
    Brazilian Portuguese
    Make the following experiment and learn how to protect your computer at the same time with Google!

    Here's a text written in English and then the same text in Brazilian Portuguese and European Portuguese.

    [Original] American English/The language of your operating system: http://www.google.com/goodtoknow/online-safety/device/

    British English: http://www.google.co.uk/goodtoknow/online-safety/device/

    http://www.google.com.br/goodtoknow/online-safety/device/ [Brazil]

    http://www.google.pt/goodtoknow/online-safety/device/ [Portugal]

    Read carefully and try to pick the small differences in vocabulary usage, grammar and constructions.

    Attention: Sometimes the choice of words is just a question of a random choice:
    mouse (en) = mouse (br) = rato (pt) [computing]
    software (en) = software (br) = software (pt)
    operating system (en) = sistema operacional (br) = sistema operativo (pt)
    user (en) = usuário (br) = utilizador (pt)

    It's almost like if you go to self-service restaurant and on the menu you have the Portuguese language. The Brazilian guy/girl picks up some words from what's on offer and the Portuguese guy/girl picks up other ones to compose their meal. But both the Portuguese and the Brazilian choices make part of the whole of the Portuguese language.
  29. Ruca Senior Member


    Olá Casmurro,

    Em Portugal usa-se bastante "a gente" mas penso que não tanto como no Brasil. A ideia que tenho é que no Brasil praticamente deixaram de utilizar "nós". Em Portugal ambas as formas são utilizadas correntemente.

    Muitas vezes, ouve-se "a gente" conjugada na primeira pessoa do plural, como por exemplo, "a gente somos" em vez de "a gente é". Felizmente, muitas pessoas fazem a conjugação correta.
  30. Casmurro

    Casmurro Member

    Porto Alegre, Rio Grande do Sul
    Portuguese - Brazil
    Realmente, a conjugação está entrando em desuso (apesar de expressões como "vamos lá"). Contudo, tanto o reto quanto o oblíquo ainda é utilizado normalmente. Ex.: -Quem fez isso?

    -Ela nos contou o seu segredo.

    Outra coisa, vocês declinam algum gênero no uso do a gente? Por exemplo: "A gente está cansada" ou "A gente está cansado"?. No Brasil, o masculino é absoluto.
  31. spielenschach Senior Member

    Portugal . Portuguese
    Seundo a "nova ortografia" o p e o c desaparece também em português
    Consoantes mudas - Uma grafia: -c- e -p- eliminam-se quando não se pronunciam - http://www.priberam.pt/docs/NovaOrtografia.pdf
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2013
  32. Denis555

    Denis555 Senior Member

    Cracóvia, Polônia
    Brazilian Portuguese
  33. and_what New Member

    I would like to apologise before hand as I know this thread had been made a long time ago but I can't use that thread...
    ok so I have this girl at work who claims she's from Brazil... when someone speaks to her in Portuguese she says she doesn't understand them as she only knows a decent amount of Brazilian Portuguese... is there anyone that can help me out on this... you will be doing me a massive favour as I'm sick of this girl claiming something she isn't...
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 18, 2013
  34. Casmurro

    Casmurro Member

    Porto Alegre, Rio Grande do Sul
    Portuguese - Brazil
    Ok, let me see if I get this: she says she is a brazilian who doesn't know enough portuguese? Because that's insane. Would be the same thing if you say you can't understand me because you only know a decent amont of english, even though it's your native language...

    Unless she is only three years old :D

    But what's your point? Do you want to prove she is not brazilian?
  35. Ruca Senior Member



    Em princípio, sim. O verbo concorda com o sujeito: "A gente está cansada". No entanto, muitas pessoas dirão "A gente estamos cansados", o que ovbiamente é agramatical.

    No que me diz respeito, e perdoem-me o meu preconceito machista, não em soa bem qualificar como "cansada" um grupo de pessoas onde eu estou incluído. Nestas situações, costumo utilizar o pronome "nós": "Nós estamos cansados".
  36. and_what New Member

    yes, I'm done with her constant lying... but this lie has gone on for 2 long i just want to prove that she isn't who she claims she is...
    is there a way i can prove she is lying... i myself know no Portuguese at all... any advice that could help me out
  37. Joca

    Joca Senior Member

    Florianópolis, Brazil
    Brazilian Portuguese
    Couldn't it be the case that she was born in Brazil but then got adopted by a foreign family at a very early age? That would explain why she doesn't understand Portuguese...

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