45 Vote

When confronted with how to translate "to get", replace this all-purpose verb with a synonym. If the synonym is not colloquial, but rather technical (especially if it sounds Latin or Greek), it will be much easier to translate. Examples:

  • to get sick = to fall ill = caer enfermo
  • to get sick = to contract a disease = contraer una enfermedad
  • to get sick = to sicken = enfermar
  • to get better = to improve = mejorar
  • to get there = to arrive there = llegar allí
  • to get a degree = to obtain a degree = obtener un título
  • to get the phone = to answer the phone = contestar el teléfono
  • I got a prize = I received a prize = Recibí un premio
  • I didn't get the joke = I didn't catch the joke = No pillé la broma
  • Get me some cigarettes = Buy me... = Cómprame tabaco
  • Get the doctor = Call the doctor = Llama al médico
  • They got the thief = They caught/captured the thief = Pillaron/capturaron al ladrón
  • Get the dinner ready = Prepare the dinner = Prepara la cena

A few synonyms of to get to "get you started":

to access to accomplish to achieve to acquire
to advance to annex to apprehend to arrest
to attain to bag to be afflicted with to be given
to be smitten by to beat to become to become infected with
to blow in to bring to bring in to build up
to buy into to buy off to buy out to capture
to cash in on to catch to catch on to to chalk up
to clean up to clear to collar to come
to come by to come down with to come over to come to
to compass to comprehend to contract to converge
to cop to defeat to develop into to draw
to draw near to earn to educe to effect
to elicit to evoke to extort to extract
to fathom to fetch to figure out to follow
to gain to get hands on to get into one's head to get sick
to glean to go to grab to grow
to have to hear to hustle to inherit
to know to land to lay hold of to lay one's hands on
to learn to lock up to look at to make
to make a buy to make a killing to make it to memorize
to nab to nail to net to notice
to obtain to occupy to overcome to overpower
to parlay to perceive to pick up to procure
to pull to rack up to reach to realize
to reap to receive to run to score
to secure to see to show to show up
to sicken to snag to snap up to snowball
to succeed to to succumb to take to take in
to trap to turn to turn up to wangle
to wax to win to work out

Why don't you contribute to this thread by providing more examples?

19 Answers

11 Vote

Should this be included in the Reference section?

7 Vote

This list is a perfect example of why so many contemporary native English speakers suffer from a constantly shrinking vocabulary. Ask most of them to replace the word "get" with the corresponding verb and it taxes their memory.

In my experience of teaching EFL / ESL, students of the language can do this task much easier than the natives. So if you happen to be taking on English as an additional language, there is is no need to lose sleep over learning all of the "get" usages. Once you start using the language, "get" will naturally infect your vocabulary as your language skills become more native-like. My advice is to retain your vocabulary as long as you can by avoiding "get" as much as you can.

5 Vote

Thank you so much, Lazarus smile

l always wondered how to translate ''get'' but never found a good answer!

5 Vote

This has been included here, graciasgrin

4 Vote

Very well stated. Good advice.

What would we do without you, Lazarus?! I just don't know...

orkut scraps

  • Get real! Just kidding... :) - cristalino Jun 30, 2011 flag
  • :) - SonrisaDelSo Jun 30, 2011 flag
  • Something in this image tag alters the font through the rest of this page. Tried to fix that. - pesta Jun 30, 2011 flag
  • Fixed. There was an unpaired "bold" tag following the image. - pesta Jun 30, 2011 flag
4 Vote

Get!!!! this in the reference section grin

Actually, this is great timing because today I have been reviewing some of the stuff in Paralee's lessons. Module 3, Lesson 14 talks about verbs 'to become' (or to get), ie Ponerse, volverse, hacerse and convertirse.

This thread ties in very well.

My example:

Cuando hablo en público me pongo nervioso.

When I speak in public I get nervous.

  • Billygoat, also «devenir», to become. - 0000000 Dec 25, 2011 flag
3 Vote

Wow fantastic resource Lazarussmile Thank you soooo much for all your hard work in compiling this !) smile grin

Could you arrange to have this included in the reference section, please? I think that making this available there would mean that it would be easily accesible to all at any time it might be needed and should hopefully lessen the chances that a new member might ask a get related question again Well, We can always dream can't we! raspberry tongue wink tongue rolleye LOL grin

3 Vote

Lazarus, thank you again for a great reference!! smile

2 Vote

I have a lot of examples in my mind, but as a beginner, I don't know how to translate them.

  1. get a shock
  2. get free
  3. get promotion
  4. get lost
  5. get it meaning understand
  6. all phrasal verbs with get
  • Try "receive a shock/a promotion" and "escape" instead of "get free". "To get lost" must be phrasal: "perderse". - lazarus1907 Jun 30, 2011 flag
  • recibir or obtener un calambrazo/ascenso? - ianta Jun 30, 2011 flag
2 Vote

Great Thread. How about - "To collect" as another example. question

2 Vote

Lazarus, that is fantastic. Get is one that I always wonder about. I have also heard Heidita mention coger for getting things but don't see it in your list. Am I mistaken? Thanks

  • The list in English is rather comprehensive, but my examples are only a few. - lazarus1907 Jun 30, 2011 flag
  • I meant in your examples above the list. - Yeser007 Jun 30, 2011 flag
  • Dear Yeser007, coger es palabrota en Sud America, copular. But then again you're right. It's an indispensable word, and nice if they hadn't ruined it. They are very loathe to say there it in polite company. I received a serious admonition. - 0000000 Dec 26, 2011 flag
2 Vote

Okay, I just used the phrase "to get away with" and now wonder how I translate that. This is as opposed to "get away" which is easily converted to escape.

Escape without getting in trouble (or without getting caught) adds another "get" phrase. Escape without punishment- well maybe. Escape unscathed?

Our dictionary actually has the phrase: Get away with

salir impune de

So I assume that is the answer.

  • I can't seem to make the link work. - Stadt Jul 1, 2011 flag
  • "Salir impune" is to aboid a punishment; otherwise, the idiom "salirse con la suya" works well. - lazarus1907 Jul 1, 2011 flag
  • Thanks, I was looking for something that didn't imply punishment necessarily; also @ pesta, thanks for fixing my link. - Stadt Jul 1, 2011 flag
2 Vote

If only I could not only 'get it' but 'keep it'. '

  • I assume this is a bump. It certainly looks worth reading. ;) - jrschenk Jan 5, 2016 flag
  • It is an incognito bump mate , not good at it am I . ;) - ray76 Jan 5, 2016 flag
  • :) - ian-hill Jan 5, 2016 flag
1 Vote

Laz, you are such a little helper monkey. tongue wink

Helper monkey throws first pitch Pictures, Images and Photos

1 Vote

Conseguir = to get

  • Yeah, well, sometimes. - samdie Jun 30, 2011 flag
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