How to Say Yes and No in Portuguese
- Thursday June 2nd, 2022
- Posted by: Amanda Ennes
- Category: Learn the Portuguese Language and Portuguese Grammar
If you are studying Portuguese, you probably already learned the basic sentences every beginner must know. We are talking about things like how to say hello, thank you, and greetings in Portuguese. We are sure you already know how to say Yes and No in Portuguese as well. Just Sim and Não. Right?
However, the Portuguese language is rich and we have different ways to say the same thing. It is important to expand your vocabulary so you are familiar with new words to use in different situations. In fact, it is also important to learn different ways to say Yes and No in Portuguese to understand when the locals use them to talk to you.
Moreover, we will also use this opportunity to talk about the different ways to say ‘maybe’ in Portuguese.
How to say Yes in Portuguese
Sim means Yes and that is all.
Example: Pedi Joana em casamento e ela disse sim. (I asked Joana to marry me and she said yes.)
Affirmative way to give a response. Often used in the military.
– Terminei a prova. Posso ir embora? (I have finished my test. Can I go home?)
– Positivo. (Positive.)
If you are sure about your answer/thoughts/statement and want to confirm it with confidence, you can say ‘com certeza’.
Example: Eu vou desfilar no carnaval com certeza. (I’m going to parade in carnival for sure.)
Use this word to give or emphasize agreement or permission.
– Mãe, posso comer a sobremesa agora? (Mom, can I eat desert now?)
– Claro! (Of course!)
Very popular slang in Rio de Janeiro. It is another way Cariocas say ‘yes’, usually when something has been agreed upon or decided beforehand. Other Carioca slang with the same meaning includes: demorou; falou; partiu.
– Hoje é aniversário do Paulo. Vamos na casa dele fazer uma visita? (It is Paulo’s birthday today. Let’s visit him?)
– Já é! (Sure!)
Now, this is a funny one. We use the word ‘não’, which means ‘no’ with a positive meaning here. ‘Pois não’ is a polite way of saying ‘yes’. It is typically used when someone asks for help.
– Quero comprar um vestido novo. Você pode me ajudar? (I want to buy a new dress. Can you help me?)
– Pois não? (Yes. How can I help you?)
Using the verb
In Portuguese, if someone asks you a question, you can use the verb used in said question as an affirmative answer. Let’s check a few examples so you understand.
– Você aceita ser minha madrinha de casamento? (Will you be my maid of honor?)
– Aceito. (I will.)
– Quer viajar comigo no fim de semana? (Do you want to travel with me over the weekend?)
– Quero. (I do.)
– Posso pegar seu lápis emprestado? (Can I borrow your pencil?)
– Pode. (Yes, you can.)
– Vamos à praia amanhã? (Let’s go to the beach tomorrow?)
– Vamos. (Yes.)
How to say No in Portuguese
The most common way to say ‘no/not’.
Pay attention to the pronunciation, as ‘não’ has a nasal sound unknown to many other languages.
Example: Eu não vou à festa. Já disse que não. (I am not going to the party. I already said no.)
A more formal way to say no. However, it can also be used in some everyday situations.
– Maria disse que você vai pedir demissão. (Maria said you are going to quit.)
– Negativo. Eu não disse isso. (Negative. I did not say that.)
‘Nunca’ means ‘never’ and can be used as a negative statement.
Example: Eu nunca faria isso com você. (I would never do that to you.)
‘Jamais’ and ‘nunca’ are synonymous.
Example: Eu jamais irei àquele bar. (I will never go to that bar.)
De jeito nenhum
Use this expression when the is no possibility for something to happen.
Example: Meu pai não vai deixar eu ir à festa de jeito nenhum. (There is no chance my father will allow me to go to the party.)
De jeito maneira
Same as ‘de jeito nenhum’.
– Posso sair mais cedo do trabalho hoje? (Can I leave work early today?)
– De jeito maneira. (No way!)
How to say Maybe in Portuguese
It is used to show that something is possible or that something might be true.
Example: Talvez Bruno não seja tão malvado assim. (Maybe Bruno is not so mean after all.)
‘Quem sabe’ is used to express the idea that anything is possible.
Example: Quem sabe eu não mudo de ideia e viajo com vocês no fim do ano? (Maybe I change my mind and travel with you at the end of the year.)
Example: Mariana possivelmente vai vender o carro dela. (Mariana will probably sell her car.)
There are two meanings for ‘de repente’. It can be used as ‘suddenly’, unexpectedly. Nonetheless, it can also represent possibility.
Example: De repente eu passo na sua casa depois do trabalho. (Maybe I will stop by your house after work.)
Brazilians usually find it difficult to say no. They will frequently leave it open and say ‘talvez’, ‘quem sabe’, or ‘de repente’ when in fact they want to say no. This usually happens when you invite them to something/someplace they do not really want to do/go but are afraid to hurt your feelings by saying no.
How to Say Yes, No, and Maybe in Portuguese
|Yes||Sim; Positivo; Com certeza; Claro; Já é; Pois não|
|No||Não; Negativo; Nunca; Jamais; De jeito nenhum; De jeito maneira|
|Maybe||Talvez; Quem sabe; Possivelmente; De repente|
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