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Conjunctions / conjunciónes

These connect various parts of a sentence together, words, phrases and clauses within a sentence (don't get them confused with prepositions which are words used in front of a noun or pronoun to relate it to the rest of the sentence - sometimes the infinitive is used after prepositions e.g. para, en vez de...)
These may be easily confused with prepositions as some are related e.g.
en caso de= in case of (preposition) - a noun (thing) follows e.g. en case de incendio = in case of fire
en caso (de) que = in case (conjunction) - another section of a sentence follows e.g. ...en caso de que llegen temprano = in case they arrive early
Bear in mind that in subordinate and relative clauses, the subject usually comes after the object because Spanish tends to avoid constructions where the subject is far from it's verb e.g.Ganaré la carrera a menos que llegue su amigo= I will win the race unless your friend arrives (literally: unless arrives your friend).
This is a good example of NOT using the "personal A" because people may think that the 'a' is incorrectly left out since "amigo" is a human but it isn't a direct object, it's the subject of the verb llegar.Putting the subject after the verb is normal in sentences if the subject is long.
Again, the subject is far from it's verb like if the sentence started with "The man with the brown briefcase rang me" then "the man with the brown briefcase" is the subject and will come after "rang me".
I don't believe it's important to remember the three names for the conjunctions except "subordinate conjunctions" may be useful to remember. There are three types:


Remember that a subordinate clause develops more fully the ideas expressed in the previous clause. Here is a list of them showing whether they need the subjunctive following them (the "doubt" tense). The ones that are marked + PossibleSub means that you use the subjunctive if the event hasn't happened at that time (because it may not have happened which implies doubt), otherwise use the indicative (all other factual tenses).
Conjunction Notes
a (que) in order to + subjunctive - The infinitive is possible with this, see "sin"
a condición de que on the condition that + subjunctive this has the same meaning as "con tal (de) que"
If the subjects of both verbs are the same, use the infinitive.
adonde (to) where - a preposition cannot be placed at the end of a sentence in Spanish, and where it would come before 'donde' then you use adonde
El lugar adonde van es bello = The place where they are going to is beautiful
a fin de que so that, in order that + PossibleSub. When the subjects of both verbs are the same, use the infinitive.
a media de que "as" + PossibleSub. This means the same as según but implies "without delay"
a menos que Unless (nearly always followed by the subjunctive) also: unless I'm mistaken = si no mi equivoco
A no ser que Unless + subjunctive
A partir del momento en que From the time that + PossibleSub
a pesar de que Despite the fact that + PossibleSub – same meaning as "pese a que" The infinitive is possible with this, see "sin".
Occasionally, the gerund can be used as an alternative.
A pocas días de que A few days after + PossibleSub
apenas As soon as + PossibleSub (as an adverb, it means hardly/scarcely)
antes (de) que
used with TIME
Before + subjunctive
You can use the infinitive with this when the subjects of both verbs are the same e.g.
¿Va a comerlo antes de irse? Are you going to eat that before leaving?
antes – is an adverb
antes de – is a preposition
antes (de) que – is a conjunction

The "de" can optionally used although it should be missed out when a preference is indicated but this is not too important. If in doubt, miss it out.
así .... como both .... and
así que therefore
aun cuando even if
aunque although, even though, even if (Latin America uses a different word to aunque)
This takes the subjunctive when an uncertainty follows and the indicative when it refers to the past.
Occasionally, the gerund can be used as an alternative.
caso que in case that (is this the same as"en caso de que"?)
como as, since (with the same meaning as ya que / puesto que).
Hágalo como quiera = do it however you like
This can be used with the subjunctive explained in the Conditions section as a threat, used in Spain
como que it seems that, apparently
como quiera que although, since
como si as if + subjunctive
The gerund can be used as an alternative (como + gerund)
El perro miró fijo la puerta como preparándose para ladrar = The dog stared at the door, as if preparing to bark
Movió su cabeza, como llamando nuestra atención = He moved his head, as if attracting our attention
Fue casi como si estuviera siendo cuidadoso
con el objeto de que in order that + subjunctive
con la condición que on condition that
con tal (de) que provided that + subjunctive
This has the same meaning as "a condición de que"
If the subjects of both verbs are the same, use the infinitive.
cuando When + PossibleSub
Puede comer cuando quiera
When you use this as an adverb, it can mean 'when'.
When it is used as a conjunction, it can mean 'since'.
Ella viene cuando puede = she comes when she can. This is an adverb clause which doesn't express doubt, it is a fact
dado (caso) que supposing that
de ahí que hence the fact that + subjunctive
de condición que so as to
de forma que
de manera que
de modo que
so that / in such a way that (indicating a purpose) + PossibleSub
so (indicating a result) + indicative

Indicating a purpose:
Por favor, páseme las gafas de manera que yo pueda leer el periódico = Please pass me my glasses so that I can read the newspaper

Indicating a result:
No quiere comerlo, de manera que tendré que comerlo yo= He doesn't want to eat it, so I'll have to eat it myself
de suerte que so that, in such a manner as
Debido a que Due to the fact that
desde que
used with TIME
Since / ever since + PossibleSub. The imperfect subjunctive is used frequently after this.
Desde que nacieron = Since they were born
después (de) que
used with TIME
After + PossibleSub - The infinitive is possible with this, see "antes (de) que"
Also you can say después de haber + past participle e.g. después de haber comprado las gafas, fue al cine = after having bought the glasses, he went to the cinema
después – is an adverb
después de – is a preposition
después (de) que – is a conjunction

The "de" can optionally used although it should be missed out when a preference is indicated but this is not too important. If in doubt, miss it out. The imperfect subjunctive is used frequently after this conjunction
donde where
When you translate words with -ever, you use the subjunctive:
esté donde esté (or dondequiera que esté) = wherever she is
dondequiera que wherever + subjunctive
Seré felíz dondequiera que vayamos = I will be happy wherever we go
el hecho de que
el que
que (when it means 'el hecho de que')
The fact that + subjunctive. A general rule is to use the subjunctive unless you want to put a preposition in front of 'el hecho de que'
El que él no me viera... = The fact that he didn't see me...
No los imprimí por el hecho de que se me acabó la tinta = I didn't print them due to the fact that I've ran out of ink
empero yet, however, notwithstanding
en caso (de) que in case + subjunctive - The infinitive is possible with this, see "sin"
without the 'que' then it's a preposition.
en cuanto as soon as/scarcely + PossibleSub (same as nada más)
Te llamaré en cuanto llege a casa = I'll call you as soon as I get home - the subjunctive is used because it's not a fact yet
en razón de que for the reason that
en vista de que In view of the fact that
entretanto que meanwhile, while (en el entretanto – in the meantime)
excepto que unless (nearly always followed by the subjunctive). As an adverb, it means excepting or except (for)
hasta que Until + PossibleSub
Espero hasta que él esté dormido = I wait until he is sleeping
lo mismo que just as / like
also - Hacer lo mismo (que otro) = to do the same (as somebody)
luego (de) que as soon as, after + PossibleSub
mas But (literary use, more poetic)
más bien que rather than
mas que even if, however much – am I right about this?
I have no information on this. Should this be más que (which means instead / rather) or is this different? not sure if this is literary use – contact me if you know – the link is at the bottom of the page.
mientras (que) while, so long as, as long as (duration) + subjunctive but it can optionally take the subjunctive if it refers to a future event.
It takes the indicative with completed actions
Eso no pasará mientras yo esté aquí. This won't happen while I'm here.
Mientras yo veía la televisión, sonó el teléfono
This can also mean "whereas" e.g.
mi hermano es alto mientras que mi hermana es baja = My brother is tall whereas my sister is short.
As an adverb, it means meanwhile. Mientras tanto also means meanwhile.
nada más as soon as / scarcely + PossibleSub (same as en cuanto)
This is used in Spain only
ni neither, nor
ni siquiera not even
Ni siquiera me saludaron – they didn't even say "hello" to me
Denos siquiera un poquito = At least give us a little bit
ni sólo ... (sino) también not only ... but also
no bien ... cuando no sooner ... than
no fuera que in order that... not/for fear that + subjunctive
no obstante However / nevertheless (same as "sin embargo")
Is this literary use? Contact me if you know.

As a preposition, it means in spite of / despite (literary use) with the same meaning as "a pesar de" (not literary use) As an adverb, it means nevertheless
no sea que in order that...not/for fear that + subjunctive
para que in order that / so that + subjunctive - The infinitive is possible with this, see "sin"
pero but
pese a que despite the fact that + PossibleSub
por cuanto inasmuch as
por más que no matter how
por razón que for the reason that
por si in case (usually followed by the indicative)
por si (acaso) means 'just in case'
porque because
The gerund can be used as an alternative.
This takes the subjunctive after "no porque" or when it means simply because/just because (sólo porque) e.g. No aprento español sólo porque yo sea traductor - I don't learn Spanish just because I'm a translator.
Porque + subjunctive is occasionally used after a few verbs (especially the ones that mean "to make an effort") where it means "in order that".
pues que Well...in that case (literary style only)
puesto que Seeing that / due to the fact that – the same as "ya que"
que that
salvo que Unless + nearly always followed by the subjunctive (salvo que llueva – unless it rains)
según "as" + PossibleSub e.g. "he offered them a drink as they arrived"
está según lo dejó = it's just as you left it
según me consta = as far as I know
This is also a preposition:
Según tú – according to you (note that you don't use mí or ti with this) or you can say "according to the weather" - según esté el tiempo.
Depending on (note the subjunctive use with this too)
Según la presión que aplique – depending on the pressure that you apply
si if, whether
Si no otherwise
siempre que whenever, provided that, every time that + PossibleSub
Siempre que + indicative = whenever
siempre que + subjunctive = provided that
As an adverb, it means always / all the time
sin embargo Nevertheless / however
sin que Without + subjunctive. If the subjects of both verbs are the same, use the infinitive:
Me fui sin esperarlo – I left without waiting for him
sino but, rather
No estoy satisfecho, sino desilusionado = I'm not satisfied, rather I'm disappointed
sino que but that, but rather that
siquiera though, although
also: Siquiera bebe algo = At least drink something
suponiendo que supposing that + subjunctive.
You can start a sentence with this.
tan luego como therefore
tan pronto como as soon as + PossibleSub
tanto ... como as much.... as / Both... and
It can be used for "whether"
Tanto Alejandro como su hermano son altos = Both Alejandro and his brother are tall
Tanto si llueve como si nieva = Whether it rains or whether it snows - (also venga o no = whether he comes or he doesn't)
Tanto si quiere como si no = Whether he likes it or not
Para todo el mundo, tanto si los visitantes son ingleses como si son españoles
For everyone, whether the visitors are English or whether they are Spanish

Also "Tanto como eso" = "It's not as bad as that"
vaya a ser que So as to + subjunctive
Is this a conjunction? Contact me if you know.
Tiene que correr, no vaya a ser que pierda el autobús
You must run, so as not to miss the bus
ya que since, seeing that (same meaning as "puesto que")
The gerund can be used as an alternative:
Se levantaron, viendo que hacía sol = They got up, seeing that it was sunny


Conjunction Notes
O This means "or" but if it's followed by another word with a clear Spanish "O" sound (such as octubre) then you use "U" so you can hear it.
Also this changes to ó with numbers because it looks like the number 0 for example "5 ó 6"
Y This means "and".
As above, if the following word has a clear Spanish "I" sound, it makes it indistinguishable from the y sound so you use "E" instead
Pero But
Sino This means "but" too when it's used as:
No sólo... sino = not only... but.
Or "Not A but B"

It sometimes means "except/but" for example:
No podía ser sino un mensaje de su amigo
It could be nothing else except/but a message from his friend.

Remember to use "sino que" when you use a verb phrase like No sólo hablaba español, sino que sabía francés también = He not only spoke Spanish, but he knew French too


These are pairs of conjunctions
Conjunction Notes
o (bien)... o (bien) Either... or
O bien pueden venir con nosotros o bien pueden quedarse aquí
Either then can come with us or they can stay here
Puede ir (o) Roberto o Antonio = Either Roberto or Antonio can go
You use 'u' as described above
O sea... o sea Either ... or
Apenas... cuando Scarcely... when
Ni... Ni Neither... nor
No me gusta ni esta pintura ni la otra = I don't like either this painting nor the other

[ENGLISH] Are there any errors or do you want to add more information to these pages?
You can contact me at the bottom of the home page.

[ESPAÑOL] ¿Hay errores o tiene información adicional?
Puede mandarme un mensaje al final de la página principal

Home page / Página principal