Spanish For Dummies book cover

Spanish For Dummies

By: Susana Wald and Cecie Kraynak Published: 02-02-2011

Learn Latin American Spanish quickly and painlessly

The job market for those who are bilingual is expanding rapidly. Businesses and government agencies are hiring translators; retailers and advertisers are concentrating more energy in targeting the Spanish-speaking ; and hospitals and agencies are seeking to overcome language barriers.

Whether you’re a student studying Spanish, a traveler gearing up for a trip to a Spanish-speaking country and need to learn the basics, or a upwardly mobile looking to get ahead of the pack in your career by learning a second language, Spanish For Dummies, 2nd edition is your hands-on guide to quickly and painlessly learn Latin American Spanish that includes:

  • Expanded coverage of grammar, verb conjugations, and pronunciations
  • A refreshed and expanded mini-dictionary complete with even more essential vocabulary, exercises, and more
  • A revamped and expanded bonus CD-ROM that includes real-life dialogue to aid in your learning

Whether you’re looking to learn Spanish for use in the home, class, at the office, or on the go, Spanish For Dummies, 2nd edition has you covered!

Articles From Spanish For Dummies

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5 results
Spanish For Dummies Cheat Sheet

Cheat Sheet / Updated 02-01-2022

Speaking Spanish requires you to keep tabs on all sorts of topics: essential words and phrases, basic Spanish questions, and the proper gender of articles. Plus, if you intend to travel, you want to be able to get help and give warnings in the case of an emergency. Refer to this Cheat Sheet for your Spanish essentials.

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Distinguishing Masculine and Feminine Articles in Spanish

Article / Updated 03-26-2016

Like many things in the Spanish language, Spanish articles have either a masculine or a feminine gender that must match the masculine or feminine gender of the Spanish nouns you pair them with. (For example, you say la blusa (lah bvlooh-sah) (the blouse) but el vestido (ehl bvehs-tee-doh) (the dress). Articles in Spanish include the (a definite article) and a, an, and some (indefinite articles). English Spanish Masculine Feminine the (singular) el (ehl) la (lah) the (plural) los (lohs) las (lahs) a, an (singular) un (oohn) una (ooh-nah) some (plural) unos (ooh-nohs) unas (ooh-nahs)

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Using Essential Spanish Words and Phrases

Article / Updated 03-26-2016

As with any language, the number of Spanish words and phrases can be intimidating. If you're just beginning to explore Spanish, you can feign fluency with these essential words and phrases until your Spanish is up to snuff. ¡Hola! (¡oh-lah!) (Hello!) Por favor. (pohr fah-bvohr.) (Please.) Gracias. (grah-seeahs.) (Thank you.) ¿Dónde está el baño? (¿dohn-deh ehs-tah ehl bvah-nyoh?) (Where is the bathroom?) Lo siento. (loh seeehn-toh.) (I'm sorry.) ¿Habla usted inglés? (¿ah-bvlah oohs-tehd een-glehs?) (Do you speak English?) No hablo mucho español. (no ah-bvloh mooh-choh ehs-pah-nyohl.) (I don't speak much Spanish.) No sé. (noh seh.) (I don't know.) Claro. (clah-roh.) (I understand. [Literally: Clear.]) Adiós. (ah-dee-ohs.) (Good-bye.)

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Getting Emergency Help and Giving Warnings in Spanish

Article / Updated 03-26-2016

Emergencies can happen whether you know Spanish or not, so if you're in a Spanish-speaking area, you need to be prepared to warn others and/or get help in Spanish should an emergency situation arise. Following are some basic Spanish distress-signaling words: ¡Socorro! (¡soh-koh-rroh!) (Help!) ¡Auxilio! (¡ahoohk-see-leeoh!) (Help!) ¡Ayúdeme! (¡ah-yooh-deh-meh?) (Help me!) ¡Rápido! (¡rrah-pee-doh!) (Quick!) ¡Apúrense! (¡ah-pooh-rehn-seh!) (Hurry!) If you face some sort of disaster, use one of the following words: ¡Incendio! (¡een-sehn-deeoh!) (Fire!) ¡Inundación! (¡ee-noohn-dah-seeohn!) (Flood!) ¡Temblor! (¡tehm-bvlohr!) (Earth tremor!) ¡Terremoto! (¡teh-rreh-moh-toh!) (Earthquake!) ¡Maremoto! (¡mah-reh-moh-toh!) (Tidal wave!) When giving a warning, you have a choice. In Mexico shout ¡Aguas! (¡ah-goohahs!) (Watch out!) ¡Ojo! (¡oh-Hoh!) (Look out! [Literally: eye]) Everywhere else, yell ¡Cuidado! (koohee-dah-doh) (Watch out!).

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Asking Basic Questions in Spanish

Article / Updated 03-26-2016

Knowing how to ask basic questions in Spanish — or any other language — is essential in a global society. To ask for information in Spanish, use these basic Spanish question words and example questions. ¿Quién? (¿keeehn?) (Who?) ¿Qué? (¿keh?) (What?) ¿Dónde? (¿dohn-deh?) (Where?) ¿Cuándo? (¿koohahn-doh?) (When?) ¿Por qué? (¿pohr keh?) (Why?) ¿Cuál? (¿koohahl?) (Which?) ¿Cómo? (¿koh-moh?) (How?) ¿Cuánto? (¿koohahn-toh?) (How much?) The following are examples of these question words in action that you may find useful: ¿Quién es él? (¿keeehn ehs ehl?) (Who is he?) ¿Qué hace usted? (¿keh ah-seh oohs-tehd?) (What do you do?) ¿Dónde viven ustedes? (¿dohn-deh bvee-bvehn oohs-teh-dehs?) (Where do you live?) ¿Cuándo llegan ellos? (¿koohahn-doh yeh-gahn eh-yohs?) (When do they arrive?) ¿Por qué está usted aquí? (¿pohr keh ehs-tah oosh-tehd ah-kee?) (Why are you [formal] here?) ¿Cuál restaurante es mejor? (¿kooahl rehs-tahooh-rahn-teh ehs meh-Hohr?) (Which restaurant is better?) ¿Cómo es su casa? (¿koh-moh ehs sooh kah-sah?) (How is their house? or What's their house like?) ¿Cuánto cuesta el boleto? (¿koohahn-toh koohehs-tah ehl bvoh-leh-toh?) (How much is the ticket?)

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