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Is Spanish more complicated than English?

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It might be challenging to learn a language. You might find learning one language more difficult or easier than learning another. Is Spanish more complicated than English?

Is Spanish more complicated than English?

It’s really hard and relative to say if English or Spanish is more complex. English is one of the world’s easiest languages to learn, as you’ve probably previously heard. Some people might find that to be true, but not others.

It actually depends on your first language and whether you are multilingual. For instance, learning Spanish will certainly be simpler for you if you speak French.

However, if you speak German, you’ll probably pick up English more quickly than Spanish. Speaking a language that is similar to the one you are learning, however, may actually be detrimental, according to some linguists.

In reality, if you think the language is too simple, you might overestimate your linguistic abilities.

spanish vs english

Spanish vs English

In order for you to reach your own judgment, three key factors must be compared:

  • Vocabulary
  • Grammar
  • Pronunciation and spelling

Both languages use the same alphabet. So you won’t be too lost if you already speak a language with the same alphabetic writing system and are thinking about learning one or the other. That is unquestionably a bonus!

Spanish vs English: vocabulary

Does Spanish use more words than English? Let us conclude by estimating that there are approximately 150,000 “official” words in Spanish.

The Oxford English Dictionary, on the other hand, contains approximately 600,000 words, some of which have long since been retired. Comparative Spanish dictionaries, on the other hand, typically have around 100,000 words.

Spanish vs English: grammar

For example, both languages use parts of speech in essentially the same way. Prepositions (preposiciones) are so-called because they are “pre-positioned” before an object. Other languages have postpositions and circumpositions that Spanish and English do not.

Verbs: Spanish vs English

Spanish becomes substantially more difficult than English at this point. Spanish includes seven simple tenses and seven complex tenses, totaling 14 complete verb paradigms.

The subjunctive

English’s subjunctive mood, which typically comes after the indicative verb forms, is not particularly significant. In Spanish, however, it adds a full new set of endings, including the present, past, and future in the subjunctive. “I hope you improve soon” and “I hoped you would improve soon.”

The imperative

The Spanish imperative is a new set of verb endings that can be used to express both positive and negative orders. A negative command in English is created by adding “don’t” to the front, and a positive command is the same as in the indicative.

Phonetics: Spanish vs English

Spanish has a long history of adapting foreign terms to fit Spanish standards; for example, locals here pronounce Goo-glay and Che-vro-let. English, on the other hand, is a mash-up of Anglo-French and Germanic influences and considerably evolved from Old English into Modern English (though I wonder if this will alter with the arrival of social media—”selfie,” anyone?).

When I was learning Spanish in Peru, I can still clearly recall getting quite upset whenever I asked for a word’s spelling. My pals would simply pronounce the word again: sim-pá-ti-co, as opposed to spelling it. There must be a good reason why Spanish doesn’t have many Spelling Bees.

spanish vs english pronunciation and spelling

Spanish vs English: pronunciation and spelling

So, when it comes to pronunciation and spelling, English is probably harder than other languages.

Spanish is not the simplest language to learn from scratch, as was previously stated. You should be aware of the aspects of studying it that will be the most challenging for you, even though they are by no means impractical.

The subjunctive: The challenge is incorrectly applying the subjunctive verb forms; learning them is not difficult. When to use them is difficult for Spanish learners to understand; sometimes it is obvious, but other times it is not, and pupils frequently become perplexed.

“Ser” and “estar”: Both verbs have the same name in English, which is the verb to be. There are two distinct ones in Spanish. Because of this, it can be challenging for non-native speakers to tell when one is used vs the other.

Is Spanish really complicated?

My impression is that Spanish is more formulaic, making charts and logical explanations easier to use. The grammar is extensive, nevertheless. There are numerous people who sound incredibly natural and quickly acquire intermediate proficiency.

Even with a lot of information, those folks could still have trouble explaining particularly complicated concepts. Spanish is perhaps more immediately understood. Even while students may not develop verb forms that are extremely correct, they may grasp the “stem” and understand it.

English is more unpredictable because of its origins. The rules are very intricate (particularly in terms of phonetics), yet there are no gendered nouns and only a few verb tenses.

It will be more difficult to sound natural while writing or speaking, but it won’t be as difficult to express academic concepts. I truly don’t know, but as a native speaker of the other language, I feel more qualified to describe the special difficulties and benefits of learning either language.

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