Easy Learning Spanish

Common adverbs - Easy Learning Grammar Spanish

1   One-word adverbs not ending in -mente

  • There are some common adverbs that do not end in -mente, most of which give more information about when or where something happens or to what degree something is true.
  • ahí       there
¡Ahí están!There they are!
  • ahora       now
¿Dónde vamos ahora?Where are we going now?
  • allá       there
allá arribaup there
  • allí       there
Allí está.There it is.
  • anoche       last night
Anoche llovió.It rained last night.
  • anteanoche       the night before last
Anteanoche nevó.It snowed the night before last.
  • anteayer       the day before yesterday
Anteayer hubo tormenta.There was a storm the day before yesterday.
  • antes       before
Esta película ya la he visto antes.I’ve seen this film before.
  • apenas       hardly
Apenas podía levantarse.He could hardly stand up.
  • aquí       here
Aquí está el informe.Here’s the report.
  • arriba       above, upstairs
Visto desde arriba parece más pequeño.Seen from above it looks smaller.
Arriba están los dormitorios.The bedrooms are upstairs.
  • atrás       behind
Yo me quedé atrás.I stayed behind.
  • aun       even
Aun sentado me duele la pierna.Even when I’m sitting down, my leg hurts.
  • aún       still, yet
¿Aún te duele?Does it still hurt?
TipThe following mnemonic (memory jogger) should help you remember when to use aun and when to use aún:
Even aun doesn’t have an accent.
aún still has an accent.
aún hasn’t lost its accent yet.
  • ayer       yesterday
Ayer me compré un bolso.I bought a handbag yesterday.
  • casi       almost
Son casi las cinco.It’s almost five o’clock.
  • cerca       near
El colegio está muy cerca.The school is very near.
  • claro       clearly
Lo oí muy claro.I heard it very clearly.
  • debajo       underneath
Miré debajo.I looked underneath.
  • dentro       inside
¿Qué hay dentro?What’s inside?
  • despacio       slowly
Conduce despacio.Drive slowly.
  • después       afterwards
Después estábamos muy cansados.We were very tired afterwards.
  • detrás       behind
Vienen detrás.They’re coming along behind.
  • enfrente       opposite
la casa de enfrentethe house opposite
  • enseguida       straightaway
La ambulancia llegó enseguida.The ambulance arrived straightaway.
  • entonces       then
¿Qué hiciste entonces?What did you do then?
  • hasta       even
Estudia hasta cuando está de vacaciones.He studies even when he’s on holiday.
  • hoy       today
Hoy no tenemos clase.We haven’t any lessons today.
  • jamás       never
Jamás he visto nada parecido.I’ve never seen anything like it.
  • lejos       far
¿Está lejos?Is it far?
  • luego       then, later
Luego fuimos al cine.Then we went to the cinema.
  • muy       very
Estoy muy cansada.I’m very tired.
  • no       no, not
No, no me gusta.No. I don’t like it.
  • nunca       never
No viene nunca.He never comes.
‘¿Has estado alguna vez en Argentina?’ – ‘No, nunca.’‘Have you ever been to Argentina?’ – ‘No, never.’
  • pronto       soon, early
Llegarán pronto.They’ll be here soon.
¿Por qué has llegado tan pronto?Why have you arrived so early?
  • quizás or quizá       perhaps
Quizás está cansado.Perhaps he’s tired.
  • Note that you use the present subjunctive after quizás or quizá if referring to the future.
Quizás venga mañana.Perhaps he’ll come tomorrow.
  •       yes
¿Te apetece un café? – , gracias.Do you fancy a coffee? – Yes, please.
  • siempre       always
Siempre dicen lo mismo.They always say the same thing.
  • solo or sólo       only
Solo cuesta tres euros.It only costs three euros.
  • también       also, too
A mí también me gusta.I like it too.
  • tampoco       either, neither
Yo tampoco lo compré.I didn’t buy it either.
Yo no la vi. – Yo tampoco.I didn’t see her. – Neither did I.
  • tan       as, so
Vine tan pronto como pude.I came as fast as I could.
Habla tan deprisa que no la entiendo.She speaks so fast that I can’t understand her.
  • tarde       late
Se está haciendo tarde.It’s getting late.
  • temprano       early
Tengo que levantarme temprano.I’ve got to get up early.
  • todavía       still, yet, even
Todavía tengo dos.I’ve still got two.
Todavía no han llegado.They haven’t arrived yet.
mejor todavíaeven better
  • ya       already
Ya lo he hecho.I’ve already done it.
TipThe accented form sólo (meaning only) is sometimes used when there might otherwise be confusion with the adjective solo (meaning alone, lonely, single), as in Sale solo los sábados (meaning He only goes out on Saturdays or He goes out alone on Saturdays).

2   Words which are used both as adjectives and adverbs

  • bastante, demasiado, tanto, mucho and poco can be used both as adjectives and as adverbs. When they are adjectives, their endings change in the feminine and plural to agree with what they describe. When they are adverbs, the endings don’t change.
Adjective useAdverb use
bastante enough; quite a lot; quiteHay bastantes libros.
There are enough books.
Ya has comido bastante.
You’ve had enough to eat.
Son bastante ricos.
They are quite rich.
demasiado too much (plural: too many); toodemasiada mantequilla
too much butter
demasiados libros
too many books
He comido demasiado.
I’ve eaten too much.
Llegamos demasiado tarde.
We arrived too late.
tanto so much (plural: so many); so oftenAhora no bebo tanta leche.
I don’t drink as much milk these days.
Tengo tantas cosas que hacer.
I’ve so many things to do.
Se preocupa tanto que no puede dormir.
He worries so much that he can’t sleep.
Ahora no la veo tanto.
I don’t see her so often now.
mucho a lot (of), much (plural: many)Había mucha gente.
There were a lot of people.
muchas cosas
a lot of things
¿Lees mucho?
Do you read a lot?
¿Está mucho más lejos?
Is it much further?
poco little, not much, (plural: few, not many); not veryHay poca leche.
There isn’t much milk.
Tiene pocos amigos.
He hasn’t got many friends.
Habla muy poco.
He speaks very little.
Es poco sociable.
He’s not very sociable.
TipDon’t confuse poco, which means little, not much or not very, with un poco, which means a little or a bit.
Come poco.He eats little.
¿Me das un poco?Can I have a bit?
  • más and menos can also be used both as adjectives and adverbs. However, they NEVER change their endings, even when used as adjectives.
Adjective useAdverb use
No tengo más dinero.
I haven’t any more money.
más libros
more books
Es más inteligente que yo.
He’s more intelligent than I am.
Mi hermano trabaja más ahora.
My brother works more now.
less; fewer
menos mantequilla
less butter
Había menos gente que ayer.
There were fewer people than yesterday.
Estoy menos sorprendida que tú.
I’m less surprised than you are.
Trabaja menos que yo.
He doesn’t work as hard as I do.

3   Adverbs made up of more than one word

  • Just as in English, some Spanish adverbs are made up of two or more words instead of just one.
a vecessometimes
a menudooften
de vez en cuandofrom time to time
todo el tiempoall the time
hoy en díanowadays
en seguidaimmediately
Key points
  • There are a number of common adverbs in Spanish which do not end in -mente.
  • bastante, demasiado, tanto, mucho and poco can be used both as adjectives and as adverbs. Their endings change in the feminine and plural when they are adjectives, but when they are adverbs their endings do not change.
  • más and menos can be both adjectives and adverbs – their endings never change.
  • A number of Spanish adverbs are made up of more than one word.

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