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Spanish Reflexive Verbs - Verbos Reflexivos

Today's lesson is about Spanish reflexive verbs. In Spanish a verb is reflexive or becomes reflexive when the subject and the object are the same.

(La lección de hoy es sobre "verbos reflexivos" en español. Un verbo es reflexivo o se hace reflexivo cuando el sujeto y el objeto son la misma persona.)

Veamos los siguientes ejemplos:

Yo me lavo. (I wash myself.)
Ella se cepilla. (She combs herself.)
Ellos se afeitan. (They shave themselves.)

The subject and object are the same, so the verb is reflexive.

2 - When a verb is reflexive, the infinitive ends in "se." However the conjugation is the same as a non-reflexive verb.

lavar (non-reflexive regular verb)
to wash

lavarse (reflexive)
to wash oneself

rascar (non-reflexive)
to scratch

rascarse (reflexive)
to scratch oneself

maquillar (non-reflexive)
to make up, to makeup somebody

maquillarse (reflexive)
to make up oneself, to put on makeup

3 - Llamarse is one reflexive verb you have been using since you began studying Spanish.

Llamarse (to call oneself)

¿Cómo se llama usted?
What do you call yourself?

Me llamo Estevan.
I call myself Estevan.

4 - When you learned to conjugate regular verbs, you needed to learn a set of pronouns called "subject pronouns." Now, to learn to conjugate reflexive verbs, you need to learn a different set of pronouns called "reflexive pronouns." These pronouns are positioned before the verb and after the subject pronoun. The ending "se" is dropped and the verb is conjugated normally.

Note: The use of the subject pronoun before the reflexive one is optional, unless there is the need to make clear who is doing the action, like in the case of El, Ella, or Ellos, Ellas.

Yo ............ Me
Tú .............Te
Usted ..........Se
Él ...............Se
Ella ............Se

Ellos.......... Se
Ellas ......... Se

me (myself)
te (yourself)
se (himself, herself, yourself)
nos (ourselves)
se (themselves, yourselves)

5 - Let's Conjugate a Common Reflexive Verb in Spanish:

Bañarse (to bathe oneself)

Yo me baño
I bathe ( I bathe myself)

Tú te bañas
You bathe (you bathe yourself) (informal)

Usted se baña
You bathe (you bathe yourself) (formal)

Él se baña
He bathes (he bathes himself)

Ella se baña
She bathes (she bathes herself)

Nosotros nos bañamos
We bathe (we bathe ourselves) (masculine)

Nosotras nos bañamos
We bathe (we bathe ourselves) (feminine)

Ustedes se bañan
You-all bathe (you-all bathe yourselves)

Ellos se bañan
They bathe (they bathe themselves) (masculine)

Ellas se bañan
They bathe (they bathe themselves) (feminine)

6 - Some Common Reflexive Verbs in Spanish

acostarse = to go to bed
afeitarse = to shave
animarse = to cheer up
arreglarse = to get ready
asustarse = to get scared
bañarse = to bathe
calmarse = to calm down
caerse = to fall (down)
cansarse = to get tired
cepillarse = to brush (hair, teeth)
cortarse = to cut (hair, nails)
despertarse = to wake up
divertirse = to have a good time
dormirse = to fall asleep
ducharse = to take a shower
enfermarse = to get sick
enojarse = to get angry
lastimarse = to hurt oneself
lavarse = to wash (up)
levantarse = to get up
maquillarse = to put on makeup
peinarse = to comb (hair)
pintarse = to put on makeup
ponerse = to put on (clothes)
preocuparse = to worry
probarse = to try on
quebrarse = to break (arm, leg)
quedarse = to stay, remain
quemarse = to burn (oneself, one's body)
quitarse = to take off (clothes)
romperse = to tear (clothes); to break (arm, leg)
sentarse = to sit down
sorprenderse = to be surprised
vestirse = to get dressed

Last Notes to Remember:

- In Spanish, when you talk about an action being performed on yourself, you show the reflexive nature of the action with a reflexive verb.

- Some Spanish verbs make perfect sense when understood in a reflexive way, but typically they don't translate well into English. For example, levantar means "to lift," while its reflexive counterpart, levantarse, could be understood to mean "to lift oneself," but is usually translated as "to get up."

- Making a verb reflexive can change its meaning in ways that aren't always predictable. For example: abrir, to open; abrirse, to open up (in the sense of confiding in someone);
acordar, to agree, to decide; acordarse, to remember.

- Don't get discouraged; with practice and time you will get "the reflexive verbs in Spanish".

Buena Suerte !!!!!!!!!!!

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