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"TUGA" in details

Week 3, Episode 6

I don't know about you, but all I'd think if asked what I imagine when being said to, "Portuguese", I'd confess—Cristiano Ronaldo, and if said to, "Brasilian",—then their famous monument and football.

I have less information in my brain about Portugal —no wonder— than about Brasil. When I was a little girl, in Russia on TV great deal of telenovelas were being transmitted, especially Mexican and Brasilian. I used to listen through the Russian translation trying to learn some words they're using often. For Brasilians the words were: "Obrigada", "Por quê?", and "filho/filha". 

The short name for Portuguese— portuga, or tuga. The amount of people learning and speaking this language is growing from year to year, because the meaning of Brasil on the global arena is growing, too.

Portuguese was influenced greatly by Arabic and contains some words similar to those in Arabic language. No doubt, it has something to do with history and the Moorish invasion in 711 CE. It didn't really affect grammar, just some nouns were adopted, though less than in Spanish.

And the language is still evolving. For example, letters K, W and Y were not officially a part of the alphabet untill 2009. It is just some 7 years ago!

There are also diagraphs —pairs of letters which represent a single sound different from the sum of their components— and diacritics —the cedilla (ç), acute accent (á, é, í, ó, ú), circumflex accent (â, ê, ô), tilde (ã, õ), and grave accent (à)— that are not separate letters and are not included into the alphabet.

There are 8 tenses in Portuguese: 1 for Present, 5 for Past, and 2 for Future (like in Italian), but also you need to learn the forms of verbs for conditional, conjunctive and imperative moods. It's quite a challenge, don't you think? )

Now, people in Brasil or Portugal are not Italians, but they do use their hands a lot. There is something about the way they talk that is worth looking into. If you have seen Brasilian telenovelas, you know what I am talking about. Otherwise, watch the video below (7 minutes) where Kevin Porter shows 6 special ways Brazilians behave while speaking and makes demonstrations in beautiful Portuguese. Just a touch of Brasil :)

For me, the music of Portuguese language is pleasant. The pronunciation and logic are more complicated than in Spanish, but the language is learnable. Because the letters are familiar, the sounds are not alien and the grammar is quite reasonable. All you need is practice! :)

'Vambora! (Let's go!)

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