Looking for Accelerated Spanish? We've rebranded!

Click here to learn more.

Abuelo, abuela, tío, novia

Today we’re going to learn some new nouns to describe people, including family members such as “grandfather”, “grandmother”, “uncle”, and “aunt”.

Full Podcast Episode


Solo somos humanos.

Intro: Join us on a rigorous, step-by-step journey to fluency. I’m Timothy and this is LearnCraft Spanish.

Today we’re going to learn some new nouns for people, including the words for “girlfriend”, “boyfriend”, “uncle”, “aunt”, and “grandparents”.

First, let’s learn some terms for things you might call people who aren’t necessarily related to you, and we’ll start with a couple that aren’t very nice but are high on the frequency list. The Spanish word for “murderer” is asesino, literally “assassin”. For example:

The police are looking for the murderer.

La policía está buscando al asesino.

And then the word for “idiot” is idiota, spelled just like the English word but with an A at the end. This word actually has an A at the end regardless of the gender of the person it describes, although it can be either masculine or feminine. For example:

Either he’s an idiot or she’s an idiot.

O él es un idiota o ella es una idiota.

Now, of course, idiota isn’t a word we’re going to encourage you to use, but it’s one that is common enough you’ll want to be able to recognize it. Incidentally, it’s also useful for pointing out an idiomatic use of por. Check out this sentence.

I’m an idiot for not going out beforehand.

Soy un idiota por no salir antes.

Literally, “I’m an idiot because of not going out beforehand.” This is an interesting situation where por is translated into English as “for”, even though what we’re referring to is clearly the cause, not something being intended for something (which is why we don’t use para).

And then one more negative word: In English, the opposite of “friend” is “enemy”, and in Spanish, the opposite of amigo is enemigo. So for example:

The two girls were enemies.

Las dos chicas eran enemigas.

Let’s practice the words asesino, idiota, and enemigo.

An idiot told me we were enemies.

Un idiota me dijo que éramos enemigos.

(Formal, f) Keep working or you’ll become my enemy.

Siga trabajando o se hará mi enemiga.

You have to continue or you’ll be a murderer.

Tienes que seguir o serás un asesino.

If she doesn’t finish this, she’ll be a murderer and an idiot.

Si no termina esto, será una asesina y una idiota.

Our next word is humano, spelled h-u-m-a-n-o. This simply means “human”. You probably won’t use this word nearly as often as you use the word persona, just like we don’t use the word “human” as often as “person” in English. But it’s useful in some situations, especially when you’re contrasting humans and animals. For example:

There are more dogs than humans in this room!

¡Hay más perros que humanos en esta habitación!

While we’re in this territory, let’s go ahead and learn the word for “animal”, which is animal, spelled exactly the same as the English word. So for example:

Wait. Is your friend a human or an animal?

Espera. ¿Tu amigo es un humano o un animal?

Let’s practice these words.

(Plural) Keep talking to that human.

Sigan hablando con ese humano.

I want him to finish so I can see the animal.

Quiero que termine para que yo pueda ver al animal.

I like animals more than humans, especially dogs.

Me gustan más los animales que los humanos, sobre todo los perros.

All right, now let’s learn some words for family members or other people close to you. We’ll begin with the words for grandparents. The word for “grandfather” is abuelo. For example:

My grandfather’s house is in the country.

La casa de mi abuelo está en el campo.

And then abuela means “grandmother”. And to say “grandparents”, you’ll use the term abuelos, just like you say padres for “parents”. Here’s an example:

Her grandparents are much older than my grandmother.

Sus abuelos son mucho mayores que mi abuela.

Try to predict the Spanish in this next one:

Your grandfather should meet my grandmother.

Tu abuelo debería conocer a mi abuela.

Next, the words for “uncle” and “aunt” are tío and tía. For example:

My aunt just met her uncle.

Mi tía acaba de conocer a su tío.

Let’s practice abuelo, abuela, tío, and tía.

If we finish, we can talk to our grandfather.

Si terminamos, podemos hablar con nuestro abuelo.

My aunt wants him to continue working with his grandmother.

Mi tía quiere que siga trabajando con su abuela.

Our grandparents like my uncle and my dad.

A nuestros abuelos les gustan mi tío y mi papá.

Next let’s learn some terms you might use in a romantic partnership. The word novio means “boyfriend”, and novia means “girlfriend”. Here are some examples:

My girlfriend has never been here.

Mi novia nunca ha estado aquí.

Her boyfriend needs to meet her grandparents.

Su novio necesita conocer a sus abuelos.

Note that these words have secondary meanings; novia can also mean “bride”, and novio can mean “groom”. But the most frequent uses are “girlfriend” and “boyfriend”.

And our last word is marido, which means “husband”. Of course, we’ve already learned that the word esposo can mean “husband”, but marido is a very common synonym. For example:

She’s my husband’s aunt.

Ella es la tía de mi marido.

Let’s practice novia, novio, and marido.

He was my boyfriend, but now he’s my husband.

Era mi novio, pero ahora es mi marido.

His girlfriend hasn’t finished working.

Su novia no ha terminado de trabajar.

Her husband tells her to continue talking, it’s free.

Su marido le dice que siga hablando, es gratis.

The bride and groom want me to finish their work.

La novia y el novio quieren que yo termine su trabajo.

For more practice with any of this, feel free to dig deeper at LCSPodcast.com/169. Or if you’re ready, let’s go on to today’s final quiz.

My grandfather doesn’t seem human.

Mi abuelo no parece humano.

We finished our work and my boyfriend will finish his soon.

Terminamos nuestro trabajo y mi novio terminará el suyo pronto.

I didn’t finish, so I continue talking to my grandmother.

No terminé, así que sigo hablando con mi abuela.

If I finish this, the animal can be free.

Si termino esto, el animal puede ser libre.

She keeps believing her husband isn’t an idiot.

Sigue creyendo que su marido no es un idiota.

Finish this work! You had to finish it yesterday.

¡Termina este trabajo! Lo tenías que terminar ayer.

If you keep calling me a murderer, I’m going to be sad.

Si me sigues llamando un asesino, voy a estar triste.

My uncle has a black car that he likes.

Mi tío tiene un auto negro que le gusta.

He is not my enemy! He is my boyfriend!

¡No es mi enemigo! ¡Es mi novio!

My uncle is the best human in the world.

Mi tío es el mejor humano del mundo.

My aunt told me I’m an idiot for not listening to my grandmother.

Mi tía me dijo que soy un idiota por no escuchar a mi abuela.

My enemy is dumb, but he isn’t a murderer.

Mi enemigo es tonto, pero no es un asesino.

My aunt says that if they continue it will be hard.

Mi tía dice que si siguen será duro.

How incredible that my girlfriend and her grandfather continue talking.

Qué increíble que mi novia y su abuelo sigan hablando.

Her husband wants to see the animals.

Su marido quiere ver los animales.

I’m inside the white car.

Estoy dentro del auto blanco.

Keep talking to your girlfriend because she is special.

Sigue hablando con tu novia porque ella es especial.

He finished but we continue.

Él terminó, pero nosotros seguimos.

For more practice with all of this, go to LCSPodcast.com/169, or tune in tomorrow for a big quiz to practice everything we’ve learned this week.

This show is brought to you by LearnCraftSpanish.com. The Spanish voice in this episode was our coach Michael Agudelo. Our music was performed by the Seattle Marimba Quartet, and I’m Timothy, encouraging you to do the hard work of learning Spanish. Acquiring a second language is one of the most fulfilling things you can do, so start your fluency journey today at LCSPodcast.com.

Get the Free Podcast Materials
Sign up for instant access to the free course that goes with the podcast!
Access the Free Materials