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Need Help with Portuguese Prepositions


Can someone explain to me Portuguese prepositions and when to use what word? ^^
Words such as 'do', 'da', 'no', 'na', 'numa', 'num', 'desse', 'dessa', etc. I know for the most part it depends on the gender of the word, right? But other than that, I'm completely lost. o__o

I think the main reason I'm confused is because I learned these on a site called Duolingo and they don't really explain how to use these words, they kind of just make you 'do it' by translating. Translating from Portuguese to English is almost no problem, but it comes to translating from English to Portuguese, that's where I struggle because I don't remember which word to use.

I'm learning Brazilian Portuguese by the way if that makes a difference. I don't know if this is the same for European Portuguese. >.< Thank you~

For learning: Portuguese
Base language: English
Category: Language



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    do', 'da', 'no', 'na', 'numa', 'num', 'desse', 'dessa

    I cant help you with the complexities because my portuguese is not amazing, but these are contractions as follows:

    do = de + o = Of the (masculine)
    da = de + a = Of the (feminine)
    no = em + o = in/on the (masculine)
    na = em + a = in/on the (feminine)
    num = em + um = in/on a (masculine)
    numa = em + uma = in/on a (feminine)
    desse = de + esse = of this (masculine)
    dessa = de + essa = of this (feminine)

    These contractions are very important and are used constantly. It will really help your verbal comprehension to use them becuase you will NEVER hear them uncontracted in speech or even proper written material. The definitions I gave are not comprehensive. Especially desse/dessa, but this is a good start.


    Having completed the Brazilian Portuguese lessons on duolingo I understand. Duolingo is awesome but it is really is only good at teaching how to take written material from the target language and turning it into your mother tongue. It is always improving but that is where it is now.
    Also I would recommend getting a grammar book, you could look online for free one (ahem) or just google your question. Keep in mind that prepositions don't map one to one in English and there are habit and layers of meaning depending on the preposition choice.

    For example in English, "I am on the bus" means that I am traveling by bus, but "I am in the bus" means something else right? In Portuguese "Estou de autocarro (onibus)" means I am on the bus but if I want to be specific I say "Estou no autocarro 726", which means I am on the 726 bus.

    I might try Easy Portuguese for a more thorough explanation.

    Do/da is commonly used to indicate that something belongs to someone.

    "The boy's smile" -> O sorriso DO garoto.

    "The girl's smile" -> O sorriso DA garota.

    However, do/da can be used to give details abou a thing.

    "The lake house" -> A casa DO lago.

    "The magazine article" -> O artigo DA revista.

    No/na are used to talk about a specific location, about where.

    "The book is on the table" -> O livro está NA mesa.

    "In my life" - NA minha vida.

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