Portuguese Language Blog

Portuguese Translation Trick Posted by on Apr 27, 2011 in Learning

Here’s a handy trick for translating words, learning new vocabulary, or visualizing a new concept when learning Portuguese. It works best with certain types of speech, particularly objects, some nouns, and even verbs, and it works best for words that are best understood in a visual format. It’s especially helpful for visual learners!

Let’s say you come across a word in a sentence you don’t understand:

Ela fez um bolo de abacaxi para a festa.

Let’s say you haven’t heard the word abacaxi before. Plug it into the Google Images Brazil, and voilá:

This trick sometimes works for verbs too:



Sometimes it even works with adjectives!



It’s just another way to help learn new vocabulary words instead of just plugging them in to a translator. What are other ways you use to translate new words?

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  1. Steve:

    I generally really like this site, but this is a fairly disingenuous and potentially misleading “tip.” (It’s not even really related to Portuguese per se at all — Googling would work in any language.) What if the original phrase was “Que abacaxi!” The pictures of pineapples that showed up would be useless to determining the meaning of the phrase.

    You say that this works best with certain types of words, but how does someone who doesn’t know the language or what the word mean possibly know what category of word it is?

    Somehow it seems appropriate to end this comment with “Deu zebra!”

    • Rachel:

      @Steve Hi Steve,
      The idea of this blog is to give whatever tools necessary to help learn Portuguese, whether or not they relate only to Portuguese or to all language learning. I have actually used this myself when I needed to see a word translated visually, especially with objects. If someone has no knowledge of Portuguese, it won’t work, but this blog is for people learning Portuguese, who are familiar with the types of speech and at least basic vocabulary. Obviously, someone with no knowledge of Portuguese or intent to learn just uses a translator. Our tips are aimed at those already learning Portuguese looking for new ways to learn. I’m sorry you didn’t find it helpful, but it’s something I used in becoming fluent in Portuguese, so I think it’s important to share all of the ways I use.