Difference of use : Algo vs Alguno/a

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Posted by LAZARUS:

Alguno

As an adjective, it modifies the noun it precedes, when you don't refer to anyone or anything in particular among several possible options, like 'some? for statements or 'any? for questions and conditional sentences: algunas veces (sometimes), alguna película (any movie).

Used after a noun it means 'whatsoever? or '(not) at all', or simply 'none': Sin motivo alguno (for no reason at all), No hay problema alguno (There is no problem at all).

It has to be 'algún? in front of masculine nouns in singular (algún hombre), or feminine singular when the noun starts with a stressed 'a? sound, like 'águila', 'hacha', 'agua'... pretty much like 'el agua'.

'Algunos/as? can be translated as 'several': Me comí algunas magdalenas (I ate up several muffins)

As a pronoun, it is like the adjective before the noun, but the noun is intended from the context: Han venido algunos (Some of them came), algunas son más caras que otras (some are more expensive than others). In English it has many translations:

Alguno de tus hijos = One of your sons
Quiero uno = I want one
Siempre protesta alguno = There is always one who complains

Algo

In general, in statements it means 'something', and in interrogative and conditional sentences, 'anything'.

As an adverb, it means 'a little? or 'somewhat': Estoy algo cansado (I am a bit tired). Se queja algo, pero está mejor (He complains a little, but he is better). Estoy algo más tranquilo (I am a bit more calmed)

Also, as a pronoun and followed by 'de', its meaning is similar to the adverb: it indicates 'a bit', 'part of', 'something'... referring to just a (small) fraction of a whole: algo de comer (something to eat --> not necessarily a full meal), 'algo de carne? (a bit of meat), 'algo de ruido? (a bit of noise).

7680 views
updated FEB 20, 2009
posted by 00494d19

4 Answers

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Thank you, these are so helpful!!

updated FEB 20, 2009
posted by Natasha
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Thanks Heidita.

And thank you too, Lazarus. I welcome these "lesson-threads". More please!

updated FEB 19, 2009
posted by patch
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I have edited the text.

updated FEB 18, 2009
posted by 00494d19
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*Quiero uno = I want one

Shouldn't this be alguno, instead of uno'*

Don't ask me why but I think "uno" sounds better than "alguno" here.

updated FEB 18, 2009
posted by LadyDi