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ALGO or ALGUM? What is the difference?




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ALGO or ALGUM? What is the difference?


Depending on the context, the translation of the words ALGUM, ALGUMA, ALGUNS, ALGUMAS, UNS and UMAS is always the same in English: SOME.


How to know which word to use? I'm going to give you examples so you can see how to use each one of these words.


ALGO (something)


ALGO is an indefinite pronoun and means something, anything, an unknown or unspecified thing. The English translation of ALGO is SOMETHING.


Examples:

  • Você quer comer ALGO? (Do you want to eat something?)

  • Tem ALGO errado com esse computador. (There is something wrong with this computer.)


ALGUÉM (someone)


ALGUÉM is also an indefinite pronoun and means some person, any person. The English translation of ALGUÉM is: SOMEONE or SOMEBODY.


Examples:

  • Tem ALGUÉMna porta. (There's someone at the door.)

  • ALGUÉM pode me ajudar? (Can someone help me?)


ALGUM , ALGUMA, ALGUNS and ALGUMAS (some/ a few)


These are variations of the same word, and the English translation of all these words is SOME or A FEW. This pronoun varies in gender and number and must always agree with the noun.


Examples:

  • Eu adoraria viajar à Tailândia ALGUM dia. (I would love to travel to Thailand someday.)

  • Você gostaria de comer ALGUMA coisa? (Would you like to eat something?)

  • ALGUNS assuntos são mais complicados que outros. (Some subjects are more complicated than others.)

  • ALGUMAS pessoas não gostam de chocolate. (Some people don't like chocolate.)


ALGO or ALGUMA COISA?


The word ALGO and the phrase ALGUMA COISA have the exact same meaning.


Examples:

  • Você quer comer ALGO? (Do you want to eat something?)

  • Você quer comer ALGUMA coisa? (Do you want to eat something?)


ALGUNS or UNS? ALGUMAS or UMAS?


ALGUNS and ALGUMAS are indefinite pronouns, while UNS and UMAS are indefinite articles. Theoretically, they are different words, but in practice, in many contexts, these words are used interchangeably.


Examples:

  • Vou encontrar UNS amigos amanhã. (I'm going to meet some friends tomorrow.)

  • Vou encontrar ALGUNS amigos amanhã. (I'm going to meet some friends tomorrow.)

  • Eu tenho ALGUMAS perguntas. (I have some questions.)

  • Eu tenho UMAS perguntas. (I have some questions.)


In some contexts, it sounds more natural to use the word ALGUNS or ALGUMAS, and in other contexts, it’s preferable to use UNS or UMAS. You will learn these nuances of the language with time and practice.


That's it, everybody!


Now it's homework time! Leave a comment below using one of the words you learned in this lesson.


Your teacher,


Virginia.


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