Pois é… Posted by Transparent Language on Jul 21, 2008 in Learning
An important thing to remember when answering yes or no questions in Portuguese are the different options you have for saying “yes.”
1. The grammatically correct answer uses the main verb in the question, which you conjugate in the first person tense. You can add a “sim” for good measure, but you don’t need it.
Você gosta de camarão? Do you like shrimp? Sim, gosto. Yes, I do.
Você quer dormir? Do you want to go to sleep? Quero. Yes, I do.
2. When you have a question in the third person, talking about another person or “it,” you can just say “é.”
O jogo é difícil? Is the game hard? É. Yes, it is.
A Maria é bonitinha, né? Maria is cute, isn’t she? É. Yes, she is.
3. Finally, you can use the term “pois é” with a yes or no question when your answer is “yes,” and when you’re not happy about the answer. Also, this term must be followed by some sort of explanation.
Você vai ficar no escritório até às 19:00? Are you going to stay at the office until 7pm?
Pois é, tenho muito trabalho de fazer ainda. Yes, I am, since I still have a lot of work to do.
Você soube do assalto? Did you hear about the mugging?
Pois é, que coisa terrível. Yeah, I did–that’s so terrible.
Você está triste? Are you sad?
Pois é, meu irmão foi embora hoje. Yes, I am–my brother left today.