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    Spanish Directional Prepositions

    Beginner+ Spanish - Level A2

    Overview

    Prepositions are words that effect (without describing as an adjective does) a noun or pronoun,
    normally preceding it. In other words, prepositions describe the relationship of people, places and things
    to the world.

    Vocabulary

    Directional Prepositions

    Madrid, Spain financial district skyline at twilight viewed towards the Gates of Europe.-1

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    Spanish A2

    Directional prepositions indicate the location of what is being talked about. If you want to know where something is, or how to get somewhere, or even at what location something is happening, you will be using directional prepositions. In Spanish there are several of these:

     

    Encima de              

    On top off                              

    Enfrente de              

    In front of / opposite

    Debajo de                

    Underneath from                    

    Entre

    In between

    Detrás de                  

    Behind  

    Lejos de                    

    Far from  

    Delante de              

    in front of / ahead of

    Cerca de                    

    Near to

    Al lado de                

    Next to                                  

    Adentro

    Inside

    A la izquierda  

    To the left                            

    A la derecha              

    To the right

     

    These are just a few of the prepositions used. The preposition “A” is use for directional instructions, as well as to indicate time:

    The directional “A” or “Al” is translated as “to” not “at.” Voy a la cena. I am going to supper.

    The directional “a” is used to indicate time, places, events.

    a el cine -                              -   I am going to the movies

    To a person:     Voy a ver a Ernesto.                   - I am going to see Ernesto

    To an activity:   Voy a

    To a place:       Voy a estudiar                             - I am going to study

    To a time:         La película comienza a las ocho - The movie starts at eight.

     

    Examples of uses of “Al”

    Voy al teatro a ver una obra - I am going to the theater to see a play.

    Gladys va al concierto para escuchar música. - Gladys goes to the concert to listen to     music.

    To indicate when an event is going to happen, you use the directional “A” plus “ser.”

    El desfile es a las 9 de la noche. The parade is at 9 pm.

    Another preposition is “EN.” This is used to indicate where things or people are located. “EN” translates to “in,” “at,” “on.”

    La ropa está en la mesa.   - The clothes are on the table

    Mi bebida está en mi vaso - My drink is in my cup.

    Notice how the same preposition “en” is used for both “in,” “on.”

    Each sentence uses the verb “estar,” and there are other verbs which always need the preposition “A” to go with them.

    Asistir a - Attend to               Jugar a   - Play ….

    Invitar a   - Invite …                Llegar a - To arrive at

    Ayudar a - Help …                 Hablar a - Speak to

     

    All of these are directional prepositions and should not be confused with what we will call personal “a” which indicates something being done to someone else.

    Voy a invitar a Diana a la fiesta.     I am going to invite Diana to the party.

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