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When do you use buen vs bueno or buena?

  • Posted Jun 23, 2010
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  • Great info, but I'm confused re: buena suerte. I didn't think suerte was either masculine or feminine so why is there an "a" ending re: buena? Thanks. - silverfoxtro Jun 23, 2010
  • Suerte is feminine. All nouns have gender in Spanish. - canicos Jun 23, 2010
  • I would add an important point to this thread of questions/answers: for every rule there is an exception! As someone noted in an example, below, Buenos dias! Dia ends in A, yet it is masculine, El Dia, so plural, buenos dias! Also: las manos, hands - sschmid1960 Oct 15, 2017

2 Answers

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This thread had some good points:

Buen, bueno, buena

Buen, bueno, buena... the ending matches the noun it describes, as far as gender.

For example,

La niña buena = The good girl

El niño bueno = The good boy

NOTE: When bueno comes before a masculine singular noun such as día (day), viaje / bee-AH-hay (trip), or trabajo (job), you drop the final 'O'.

Un buen alumno = The good student (male)

Una buena alumna = The good student (female)

"Buenos días - Good morning, Good day

Buenas noches - Good night

Que pase un buen día - Have a nice day

¡Buen viaje! - Have a nice trip (Bon voyage)

Buena suerte - Good luck!

Buen trabajo - Good job

Buen provecho - Enjoy your meal (Bon appetit)

Something else to note:

Some adjectives change their meaning according to whether they are placed before or after the noun:

El es un buen hombre. This would indicate the man is a fine man, a good person.

Jaime es un niño bueno. This would indicate Jaime is a good boy, as in well behaved.

The differences are subtle.

Es una buena comida.

It's a good meal, indicating it looks good, it's healthy, etc.

Es una comida buena.

It's a good meal, indicating it tastes good, it was hearty, satisfying, etc.

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Thank you Kiwi-Girl for your very informative answer. I looked up the thread, also. I was going to ask this question today, but found this in the archives. This was a very good question Silverfoxtrot.

  • Jun 5, 2013
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