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The Spanish verb Pasar means “to pass” or “to happen”. This verb is conjugated exactly like Hablar, yesterday’s verb. Let’s learn all about Pasar and get lots of practice using it in context.

Full Podcast Episode


Estas cosas pasan a veces.

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

Yesterday we learned all the conjugations of the verb Hablar. Today, we’re going to explore how to use those patterns on another verb.

Our verb today is Pasar, which means something like “to pass”. To describe the nuanced meanings of this word, let’s imagine sitting in a window, simply watching people pass and watching things happen. The verb Pasar can mean both “to pass” and “to happen”.

Here are a couple of examples:

I don’t want to pass by that place.

No quiero pasar por ese lugar.

That’s never going to happen!

¡Eso no va a pasar nunca!

See if you can predict how to use the gerund and the participle in these next two examples:

This isn’t happening.

Esto no está pasando.

He hasn’t passed by here yet.

Él todavía no ha pasado por aquí.

Now let’s practice conjugating Pasar in the present tense. Remember that it’s going to be conjugated EXACTLY like Hablar, with all the endings exactly rhyming with the endings that you learned yesterday. So for “I talk” we have hablo, and for “I pass” we have paso. Try it in this sentence:

I pass by your house all the time.

Yo paso por tu casa todo el tiempo.

For “he/she talks” we have habla, and for “he/she passes” we have pasa. Try that in this next one:

When he is here that doesn’t happen.

Cuando él está aquí eso no pasa.

Other forms are pasan, pasas, and pasamos. Try these next two yourself:

Juan and I pass by your house once a month.

Juan y yo pasamos por tu casa una vez al mes.

These things happen sometimes.

Estas cosas pasan a veces.

OK, let’s recall how to conjugate the preterite forms. Remember that “I spoke” is hablé. So “I passed” is pasé. Try it yourself in this next example:

I told you that I didn’t pass by her house.

Te dije que no pasé por su casa.

And then the third person singular is pasó, just like habló. Try translating this one:

Actually, that didn’t happen.

En verdad, eso no pasó.

The most common future tense form of this verb is pasará. For example, try to translate this one:

That’s what will happen if you don’t leave.

Eso es lo que pasará si no te vas.

And then the subjunctive forms are all based on pase. Try that here:

I’ll tell it to him when he passes by my house.

Se lo diré cuando pase por mi casa.

The imperative, pasa, is often used to tell someone to “come in”. For example, imagine that you’re standing outside my door. I might tell you to “pass through” by saying pasa. Try translating this next sentence:

Come in and don’t speak! 

¡Pasa y no hables!

There’s another reason that this verb is so common: In Spanish, when you spend time doing something, this is most often translated as passing time doing something. For example, to say “I spent two hours with Juan”, you’re likely to say “I passed two hours with Juan”, or pasé dos horas con Juan.

Let’s practice this with a mini-quiz, using various conjugations of Pasar.

I will spend the whole day with my friend tomorrow.

Pasaré todo el día con mi amigo mañana.

He spent three hours with her.

Pasó tres horas con ella.

They want me to spend time with him.

Quieren que yo pase tiempo con él.

She will spend the afternoon with her friends(f).

Pasará la tarde con sus amigas.

For more practice with any of this, feel free to dig deeper at LCSPodcast.com/102. Or if you’re ready, let’s go on to today’s final quiz.

How is it going? Who are you talking to?

¿Qué tal? ¿Con quién hablas?

Something happens with such a thing.

Algo pasa con tal cosa.

She wants me to go to any other place.

Quiere que yo vaya a cualquier otro lugar.

I spend time here and they spend time at parties.

Yo paso tiempo aquí y ellos pasan tiempo en fiestas.

No, I’m talking!

¡No, estoy hablando!

We don’t have enough time.

No tenemos suficiente tiempo.

There is more and more of this.

Hay cada vez más de esto.

Don’t talk unless you have some idea.

No hables a menos que tengas alguna idea.

I was talking while that was happening.

Yo hablaba mientras eso estaba pasando.

Some man has to pass time here.

Algún hombre tiene que pasar tiempo aquí.

I will talk to too many people.

Hablaré con demasiadas personas.

I don’t want her to spend much time at the table.

No quiero que ella pase mucho tiempo en la mesa.

They love each other, but they won’t speak to each other.

Se quieren, pero no se hablarán.

Please, come in!

Por favor, ¡pasa!

There aren’t so many things at that place.

No hay tantas cosas en ese lugar.

The light didn’t pass through there.

La luz no pasó por ahí.

Perhaps they speak about the past.

Tal vez hablen del pasado.

The team doesn’t have water and, as such, we have a problem.

El equipo no tiene agua y, como tal, tenemos un problema.

There are less and less cars.

Hay cada vez menos autos.

She speaks with certain people.

Ella habla con ciertas personas.

We have to be here for quite a bit of time.

Tenemos que estar aquí por bastante tiempo.

I have one job, but they don’t want me to have any.

Tengo un trabajo, pero ellos no quieren que tenga ninguno.

You spend time with some friends.

Pasas tiempo con algunos amigos.

She was talking about that.

Hablaba de eso.

Maybe she will pass by my house.

Quizás ella pase por mi casa.

It’ll be a problem, she only has two dollars.

Será un problema, sólo tiene dos dólares.

We speak and pass time while we’re here.

Hablamos y pasamos tiempo mientras estamos aquí.

I want to have a little bit of time to do this.

Quiero tener un poco de tiempo para hacer esto.

(formal) Come in! He’ll talk to you in two minutes.

¡Pase! Él hablará con usted en dos minutos.

No person wants to do it and, for such a reason, we can’t do it.

Ninguna persona quiere hacerlo y, por tal razón, no podemos hacerlo.

I passed by your house today.

Pasé por tu casa hoy.

She’ll pass time with him when he talks to her.

Pasará tiempo con él cuando él hable con ella.

Talk to me!

¡Habla conmigo!

I didn’t do it until you talked.

No lo hice hasta que hablaste.

(formal) Talk to each person!

¡Hable con cada persona!

We talked to them and one(indefinite) of them did it.

Hablamos con ellos y alguno de ellos lo hizo.

Do you want some food?

¿Quieres algo de comida?

For more practice with all of this, go to LCSPodcast.com/102.

In tomorrow’s episode, we’ll get more practice with all these verbs, plus we’ll learn some fun interjections, such as the Spanish words for “ouch”, “stop”, and “goodbye”.

This show is brought to you by LearnCraftSpanish.com. The Spanish voice in this episode was our coach Ximena Lama-Rondón. 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.

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