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Spanish Grammar Tip – Connectives

Spanish Grammar Tip

 

Los conectores discursivos – Spanish Connectives

Los conectores (Spanish Connectives) are words or groups of words that join ideas by clearly expressing how they relate to each other. An appropriate use of connectors gives a greater coherence to our speech and makes it more intelligible to those listening or reading. In fact, connectives can be used in both written and oral texts. Their main function, same as in English and as their name implies, is to connect different parts of a text, that is, words, phrases or even whole paragraphs. When a text is constructed, it is crucial to highlight the logical relations that link the different ideas so that our interlocutor can interpret them correctly. A new idea can be added to, for example, complement, contradict or reinforce a concept previously expressed. Therefore, using connectives properly will result in a final text that is coherent and easy to understand.

Below the main categories of connectors are briefly explained.

Tiempo (time)

Los conectores temporales allow placing actions or events in time, either with respect to other actions or facts or with respect to the moment in which the speaker talks.

SPANISH ENGLISH
al principio at the beginning
antes (de) before
después (de), luego, a continuación afterwards, then
al mismo tiempo at the same time
finalmente finally

Orden (order)

Los conectores de orden are those that can be used to expose an orderly series of ideas or arguments, either simply by establishing a sequence or by hierarchizing the ideas according to their importance.

SPANISH ENGLISH
primero firstly
en segundo / tercer lugar secondly, thirdly
por un lado / por otro lado on one hand / on the other hand
y and
además, también moreover, also
por último lastly
para resumir, en conclusión in conclusion

Causa (cause)

Los conectores causales express the cause or raison d’être of something.

SPANISH ENGLISH
porque, puesto que, dado que, ya que, debido a because, due to, since, as

Finalidad (purpose)

Los conectores de finalidad express the purpose, the aim, the objective of an action.

SPANISH ENGLISH
para, con el fin / objetivo de for, (in order) to, with the aim / objective to

 

Consecuencia (consequence)

Los conectores de consecuencia introduce actions or events that are a consequence or result of other actions or events.

SPANISH ENGLISH
así que, entonces, por (lo) tanto, por eso, por consiguiente therefore, consequently, so

Oposición (opposition)

Los conectores adversativos introduce opposing, contradictory or incompatible ideas. They are employed to formulate an opposition, a restriction or an objection.

SPANISH ENGLISH
pero but
sin embargo, no obstante however, nevertheless
a pesar de, pese a despite

Explicación (explication)

Los conectores reformulativos are those that allow developing a more precise way to explicit an idea through clarifications, reformulations, precisions, examples, etc.

SPANISH ENGLISH
es decir, o sea that is, i.e.
por ejemplo for example, e.g.

Referencia (reference)

Los conectores de referencia can be used to introduce a topic or be placed in it by referring to actions or events that have already been mentioned or that are known by the speakers.

SPANISH ENGLISH
en cuanto a, con respecto a, por lo que concierne with regard to, as to

 

Let’s look at some examples:

Primero me ducho y luego desayuno.  First, I shower and then I have breakfast.

Pilar trabaja mucho porque le gusta lo que hace. → Pilar works a lot since she likes what she does.

Hace mucho frío así que ponte el abrigo. → It is very cold and so put your coat on.

Laura va a preparar un pastel para su cumpleaños. → Laura is going to make a cake for her birthday.

En cuanto a las vacaciones, este verano quiero ir a Tenerife. → As to the holidays, this summer I want to go to Tenerife.


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