Portuguese indefinite articles are so easy.
And yet so important.

The Portuguese indefinite articles are very important as well. They are the equivalent to the English words "A", "An", or "Some".

To say "A", "An", or "Some" in Portuguese, you have 4 possibilities depending on gender and number.

Ok. Let me explain again.

As we have seen in previous explanations,gender, refers to words that are either feminine or masculine. Every single object, idea or person is either masculine or feminine - say male or female (except in very particular cases).

Generally speaking, the Portuguese indefinite articles are used the same way as you use them in English (e.g. to say "a house" - "uma casa" - or "an obstacle" - "um obstáculo").

As you may know, in English you have the words "a" and "an" for singular depending on whether the next word begins in a consonant or a vowel (e.g. "a house" or "an obstacle") respectively.

However, in Portuguese the words "um" and "uma" depend on whether the next word is masculine or feminine, respectively.

So, this leads us to talk again about Number. In Portuguese, you not only have to give words a gender - using the Portuguese indefinite articles - but you also have to give them a number - singular ans plural. As an example, you know that "a table" - "uma mesa" - is different from "some tables" - "umas mesas".

So, the Indefinite articles are as follows:

A, An - Singular
Some - Plural
Masculine
Um [oong]
Uns [oongsh]
feminine
Uma [oomah]
Umas [oomash]

I think that that's nothing better than illustrate what we are talking about here with some examples.

So:

Um amigo - a male friend.

Uma amiga - a female friend.

Umas amigas - some female friends.

Uns amigos - some male (or male and female) friends.

In this last example I write " some male (or male and female) friends" because in Portuguese, when you have to refer to a group of mix gender - males and females together - you use the plural masculine form.

So, if you said to me that you are going out with "uns amigos", I'd understand that you are going out either only with some male friends or with some male and female friends in a mixed group.

Some more examples:

Um livro [oong lee-vroo] - a book.

Uns livros [oongsh lee-vroosh] - some books.

Uma ideia [oomah ee-day-eeah] - an idea.

Umas ideias [oomash ee-day-eeash] - some ideas.

Uma caneta [oomah cah-nay-tah] - a pen.

Umas canetas [oomash cah-nay-tash] - some pens.

And so on.

You see? It's not difficult at all! I'm sure you understand it now!

So, what you have to do next is practise these indefinite articles with every single noun I give you here and replace the definite article by a correct indefinite article (e.g. instead of saying "a água" you should say "uma água", instead of saying "a ajuda, you must say "uma ajuda") and so on.

Hey! have you started???

Come on! Practise your vocabulary now!

Boa sorte! (Good luck!)

Rafa

I hope


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