High Frequency Words in Spanish 22 – PERO


Pero is the twenty-second most common word in the Spanish language.

Pero is a conjunction and a noun.

Pero means “but” and can also mean, as a noun, a snag or a defect.

But, by far and away, the most common use of pero is but.

But, pero should not be confused with perro. For those with sharp eyes (the ones reading this post) and sharp ears (the ones listening to this podcast), you can see and hear the difference. To Spanish ears pero means “but” and perro means “dog”. The trilled r, as it is known, a sound which is alien to most English native tongue speakers makes the difference. Not that there is really much chance of confusing the two, but it is a nice linguistic point.

Below is an example of the use of the word pero.

Me gusta el perro, pero es un poco grande – I like the dog but it is a bit big.

So the twenty-second most common word in the Spanish language is a tale of non trilled R’s. Having just written that I am now seeing possibilities playing with Toys R us, but I am going to resist it.

Pero, then, is a two syllable conjunction, that, quite simply put, all serious learners of the Spanish language have to know.

As a native English speaker, or come to that, non Spanish native speaker, how do you produce the trilled r sound. Why give share your top language tip on the contact form below?

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