Spanish Lesson Beginner 24 The Spanish verb “Gustar” (To like)

Posted on 26. Oct, 2011 by in Basic, Pronunciation, Spanish Grammar, Videos

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¡Hola! ¿Cómo estáis?

Today we are going to look in detail at the Spanish verb “Gustar” (To like).

This is a very commonly used verb which doesn´t work in the same way as the other Spanish verbs we have previously seen. Although it ends in –AR, we don´t say: Yo gusto, Tu gustas, Él gusta, etc… This verb is completely different.

• (a mí) Me gusta: I like…
• (a ti) Te gusta: You like… (friendly)
• (a usted) Le gusta: You like… (formal)
• (a él/a ella) Le gusta: He/She likes…
• (a nosotros/as) Nos gusta: We like…
• (a vosotros/as) Os gusta: You like… (group/friendly)
• (a ustedes) Les gusta: You like… (group/formal)
• (a ellos/as) Les gusta: They like…
• (a mí) No me gusta: I don´t like…

With “Gustar” we don’t use “yo, tú, él, etc…” We use instead “a mí, a ti, a él, etc,…” and it is always optional. So you can say “me gusta” or “a mí me gusta…”

If you are saying that someone likes something you must remember to use “a” before the person. For example:

• A mi abuelo le gusta el vino: My grandfather likes wine
• A Sonia le gusta el chocolate: Sonia likes chocolate

You might find it easier if you think of “Gustar” as meaning “To please” rather than “To like”. In this way you could translate the sentences as “Wine pleases my grandfather” or “Chocolate pleases Sonia”.

If you want to say that the person likes one thing, you will use “gusta” because one thing is pleasing the person, but if the person likes various things you will have to use “gustan” because various things are pleasing the person.

Also it is important to know than you will have to use “el”, “la”, “los” or “las” depending on the gender of the item and if it is singular or plural. For example:

• Me gusta el café: I like coffee
• Me gustan las aceitunas: I like olives
• Le gusta la cerveza: He likes beer
• Le gustan los bombones: He likes chocolates

If you want to say that the person likes doing something. Then you don´t use the article “el” or “la”, “los” or “las”, only the verb in infinitive (without changing the ending). For example:

• Me gusta ver la televisión: I like watching TV
• Nos gusta ir a la playa: We like going to the beach

Now, let´s see how to say how much you like something using “Gustar”:

• Me gusta muchísimo: I really like…
• Me gusta mucho: I like a lot…
• Me gusta bastante: I quite like…
• No me gusta demasiado: I don´t like that much…
• No me gusta nada: I don´t like at all…

These phrases can be used for any person. You can say, for example, “nos gusta muchísimo…” (we really like…) or “no le gusta nada…” (he doesn´t like at all….). Remember that you still have to change “gusta” for “gustan” when necessary.

Let´s see some examples:

• Me gusta muchísimo ir de compras: I really like going shopping
• Me gustan mucho los dulces: I like sweets a lot
• Nos gusta bastante andar por la playa: We quite like walking on the beach
• A mi madre no le gustan mucho las verduras: My mum doesn´t like vegetables very much
• A mis hermanos no les gusta nada la carne: My brothers don´t like meat very much.

So this is all for today. As you can see, the Spanish verb “Gustar” is quite different to the other verbs we have seen in this course. It usually takes a little bit of time for the student to get confident with it, so don’t worry if you find it a bit tricky at first. Once you have practiced with “Gustar” for a while and given it time to sink in you will find that it is not so complicated. It is a really commonly used verb so it is important to get practicing right away.

Have a great week and see you soon with more Spanish.

¡Hasta luego!

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About Laura

I am from Bilbao in northern Spain. I qualified as a Spanish Language Teacher in 2004. I have taught Spanish in England and Spain and now really enjoy teaching the Spanish Language via the internet to students from all around the world. I love my job and the intricacies of the Spanish Language. I currently live in Alicante in south eastern Spain (where the sun shines a lot more than in the north!). My main personal interests are music, photography, travelling, reading and cooking. I studied music for twelve years in Bilbao and I play the piano. I also enjoy singing and I try my best to sing more in English now. I hope very much that you enjoy my Spanish video lessons and welcome any comments.

4 Responses to “Spanish Lesson Beginner 24 The Spanish verb “Gustar” (To like)”

  1. Germán 27 October 2011 at 11:37 am #

    Estimados amigos:

    Enhorabuena por vuestro trabajo de difusión de la lengua española.

    Os informamos de que en el Centro Virtual Cervantes hemos inaugurado una sección para aprender español cuyo primer tema es, precisamente, los verbos del tipo ‘gustar’.

    Se llama En Sintonía con el Español (ESE); dispone de un podcast descargable y actividades interactivas, además de un blog donde resolver dudas y compartir experiencias.
    Lo encontraréis en:

    Un saludo cordial
    Germán Hita

  2. Valeria 28 October 2011 at 7:42 am #

    This course from today is great, so useful….Gracias!!!!

    Os deseo un dia bonita!

  3. Phil 31 October 2011 at 6:36 pm #

    Me parece muy interesante la manera en la que están estructuradas las clases de éste blog. Buen trabajo.

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