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  5. "The family goes to many conc…

"The family goes to many concerts."

Translation:La familia va a muchos conciertos.

June 15, 2018



If this is the family then surely it is van not va? Thanks


If it is "la/el", you use "va", if it is "las/los" you use "van". Simple as that. They consider a family as some unit of people, I guess...

And i'm not Shirley.


Typo not Shirley: "la / el".

Adding to your answer, the Spanish conjugation here is the same as our own:

The boys go / The sisters go / The family goes.


Thanks, you are right. Changed it.


And therefore she/he goes!


Fantastic answer. Simply put. Now I get it. Thank you.


Tú está muy divertido, matey...


HAHAHA, Surely you're joking! Hahaha


"Familia"is singular, like the word "gente", and takes the third person singular when you are conjugating verbs. It is singular despite being composed of a number of individual people.


you may consider the family as it


when do I use ir and when do I use va? Aren't they interchangeable?

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"Ir" is the Spanish base form of the English verb "go", it is also an infinitive that means "to go". "Va" is "ir" conjugated for the singular third person (él, ella, etc..) and "usted". "Va" means "(it) goes", "(he/she/etc.) goes". "(formal you) go".

  • Va desde aquí. - It goes from here.

  • Ella va al trabajo. - She goes to work.

  • Necesito ir ahora. - I need to go now.

  • Él no quiero ir al trabajo. - He doesn't want to go to work.


Ir - is an infinitive form. It is irregular. Here it's conjugation: https://www.spanishdict.com/conjugate/ir


Thanks PavelBoris2. I often get stuck on "ir" and when to conjugate it.


Why can't "ir" go in place of "va"?


Because the verb needs to be conjugated to the subject. "Ir" is the infinitive.


Why isn't it "va a los conciertos muchos"? I thought nouns came before quantifying words.


Normally quantifying adjectives come before the noun they are modifying in Spanish. Also, the "los" is unnecessary.


Why not "la familia ir a muchos conciertos"? Why "va" instead of "ir"?

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"Ir" is the base, unconjugated form, which basically means "to go". Since in the sentence above, it's used as the verb for "la familia", it must be conjugated to the third person singular which is "va". "La familia ir" would mean "the family to go", as opposed to "la familia va" which means "the family goes".


This sentence epitomizes what is confusing about spanish to an english speaker - why a but not a los or al and where to put muchos, not to mention va is singular. Eventually I have to think this way and not look up a rule.

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It looks like you need to know some rules to see how the sentence came to be.

Let's try to break it down..

not to mention va is singular

"The family goes to many concerts" looks too confusing for now. Let's remove "to many concerts" first, and focus on "The family goes". "The family goes" literally translates to "La familia va". "The family" is singular in English and so is "La familia" in Spanish, that's why the verb is the singular "va".

why a but not a los or al

The original English sentence says "to many concerts", it doesn't have the definite article "the", so it should be the same for the Spanish, as a general rule. There are exceptions of course but for countable/count nouns, like "concert", the inclusion or exclusion of the definite article usually is analogous between English and Spanish. In other words, "to the concerts" --> "a los conciertos", or for "to concerts" --> "a conciertos". It cannot be "al" in this case, since "conciertos" is plural.

where to put muchos

In Spanish, "mucho/a" and "muchos/as" are placed before the modified noun. The English sentence says "many concerts" so the Spanish should be "muchos conciertos".

So to summarize, there are at least three rules to be noted here.

  1. The verb "va" has to agree with the subject "la familia".
  2. The Spanish doesn't have the definite article "the", so the English should follow. (a general rule for countable nouns, with exceptions)
  3. "Muchos" is placed before the modified noun "conciertos".


Oh my God, that is probably the most clear, thought out and well done answer I have seen here. Great job breaking it down and explaining it. Even though I had the answer right, your answer helped me further understand why I was right. Thank you.



Very well explained. Thank you!

My challenge right now is in understanding when to include the "a" (for the preposition "to"). It seems that the preposition is often included with the primary verb, but not always. While I've been able to memorize it for some verbs, I think understanding the rule would help a lot. For example, "I want to eat" is just "Yo quiero comer"... Can you help?


Very generally "a" can be included for "to" when the English "to" relates a sense of movement / direction / location / change. I started to give examples, but quickly realised there would be a page full. There are exceptions, and many situations where "a" does not translate as "to", but again, trying to state them all would be difficult.

The major point of difference is in the example you have given: Quiero comer - I want to eat. Here the "to" is the infinitive "to" in English, and does not translate into Spanish as anything.


Thanks again. I think I need to study English grammar a bit more in order to better understand Spanish grammar.


I'm with you Julie, but when I came into learning Spanish, all I wanted was every day Spanish. The in depth grammar that comes with learning another language is quite intense, but would be very ignorant not to make an effort. I think when I go to Spain my ( disculpe mi Espanol es no muy bien , pero lo estoy intantendo lo siento) will be well used.


This was one of those things I had to wrap my head around when I started learning a foreign language - since we learn our first language intuitively, we don't always know the rules as intellectually. The unconjugated "comer" is "to eat" - we just don't think of our English verbs this way, because our conjugation is fairly simple. So, in that example, you don't add "a" because the "to" is included when you say "comer"

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Try these:

  • Ser o no ser. - To be or not to be.
  • Errar es humano. - To err is human.
  • (Nosotros) podemos tocar las guitarras. - We are able to play the guitars. / We can play the guitars.


Re: The family: Singular or plural.

US English speakers who follow Tour de France broadcasts know that our English cousins handle "collective" nouns as plurals. Phil, and, alas formerly, Paul, say "the team are," for example, instead of the US version, "the team is."


Hah another cycling fan! They are just bad at grammar: we shout at them when they say amount of riders instead of number!!


It's va and not van because it's not multiple families, but only one family. If it had said "Las familias va a muchos conciertos." Then it would have been incorrect as the va should be van, but in the sense that it was speaking about a singular family in "La familia" va is used.


Again with the a? This rule seems to change all the time. Why is it used here when it isn't specific???


The "a" here is a preposition of movement, exactly comparable to our "to":

El coche va bien - The car goes well
El coche va a la tienda - The car goes to the store


I said "conciertos muchos". How do I know when to put "muchos" infront instead of behind?


In Spanish, limiting adjectives (those that define amount or number) are placed before the noun they are describing, just like in English. As "mucho" is strictly a limiting adjective is should always come before the noun. I can't think of any exceptions.

*Note that some limiting adjectives can be placed after the noun, but in doing so they cease to be limiting adjectives and become descriptive. Eg. Limiting adjective: "Este es el único libro - This is the only book". Descriptive adjective: "Este es el libro único - This is the unique book".


Collective nouns work the same in English: eg a flock of birds is overhead where the verb agrees with flock (singular) and not birds (plural). Similarly, the family is leaving or the members of the family are leaving...


In US English, but not UK English. Please see my previous comment.


I dont get when to use va vs ir

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You use "va" with singular third persons or objects.

  • Ella va a la escuela. - She goes / is going to school.
  • Juan va a dormir. - Juan will / is going to sleep.

You use "ir" on top of an existing verb..

  • Ella quiere ir a la escuela. - She wants to go to school.
  • Juan no necesita ir a casa. - Juan doesn't need to go home.
  • Yo tengo que ir ahora. - I have to go now.

..or as a gerund, a subject.

  • Ir a casa es el mejor. - Going home is the best.


Thanks for the clarification ... you're really quick! You answered my question before I asked!! Have a lingot!


"La Familia" is singular hence "va" Las "Familias" is plural as in more than one family that would be "van". The family is going versus the families are going. And yet I made the same error. Go figure. :-)


again, why isn't it "los conciertos"?


I had no idea how to form this sentence.


how do you when to use ir al/a from vas or va?


Why, since we are taking about someone else (third person), is it not 'a la familia...'?


Because "La familia" is the subject. No personal "a" is required for the subject.


Why doesnt "ir" work in this sentence? Why does it have to be va?


Because "ir" is the infinitive. The primary verb needs to be conjugated to the subject. In this case the subject is "La familia", which is treated as a singular third person entity, so "ir" must be conjugated to "va".


What's the difference between -ir a- amd -va a-

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