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Quick answer
"Backward" is an adverb which is often translated as "hacia atrás", and "upside down" is an adjective which is often translated as "al revés". Learn more about the difference between "backward" and "upside down" below.
An adverb is a word that describes a verb, an adjective, or other adverbs (e.g. to run quickly, very tired).
1. (toward the rear)
a. hacia atrás
The soccer player moved backward to avoid the goalie and then scored a goal.El futbolista se movió hacia atrás para evitar al portero y luego anotó un gol.
2. (back first)
a. hacia atrás
Cecilia was walking backward while talking to me and tripped over a step.Cecilia caminaba hacia atrás mientras hablaba conmigo y se tropezó con un escalón.
3. (in reverse order)
a. al revés
Nicholas can recite the alphabet backward.Nicholas sabe recitar el abecedario al revés.
An adjective is a word that describes a noun (e.g. the big dog).
4. (toward a worse state)
a. atrás
The so-called fiscal reform turned out to be a step backward.La supuesta reforma fiscal resultó ser un paso atrás.
5. (toward the rear)
a. hacia atrás
She got on the bus without even a backward glance.Se subió al camión sin ni siquiera una mirada hacia atrás.
b. atrás
Berta took a step back to keep from falling off the ledge.Berta dio un paso atrás para no caerse del saliente.
A word or phrase that is seldom used in contemporary language and is recognized as being from another decade, (e.g. cat, groovy).
An offensive word or phrase used to degrade a person or group of people based on race, gender, sexual preference, etc. (e.g. ghetto).
(with learning difficulties)
a. retrasado
Even a backward child has more sense than that idiotic politician.Hasta un niño retrasado tiene más sentido común que ese político idiota.
7. (underdeveloped)
a. atrasado
Some backward countries still have people stoned to death for adultery.Algunos países atrasados todavía lapidan a las personas por adulterio.
8. (reluctant)
a. reservado
Luke is too backward to ask Daniela to go out with him.Luke es demasiado reservado como para pedirle a Daniela que salga con él.
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upside down(
An adjective is a word that describes a noun (e.g. the big dog).
1. (inverted)
a. al revés
The curator was fired because he couldn't tell that the painting was upside down.Despidieron al curador porque no sabía que el cuadro estaba al revés.
b. del revés
It's easier to slice homemade bread if the loaf is upside down.Es más fácil rebanar el pan casero si está del revés.
c. boca abajo
Why are all the tables in the café upside down?¿Por qué están boca abajo todas las mesas en el café?
d. patas arriba
The DVD player wasn't working because the disc was upside down in the slot.El reproductor de DVD no funcionaba porque el disco estaba patas arriba en la ranura.
This refers to an idiomatic word or phrase for which there is no word-for-word translation.
no direct translation
All these upside-down pictures need to be flipped.Hay que girar todas las fotos que están al revés.
I put the upside-down glass right-side up.Giré el vaso que estaba boca abajo.
An adverb is a word that describes a verb, an adjective, or other adverbs (e.g. to run quickly, very tired).
2. (inverted)
a. al revés
You're lost because you're looking at the map upside down.Estás desorientado porque estás mirando el mapa al revés.
b. del revés
During the accident, our car flipped over and we landed upside down.Durante el accidente, nuestro carro capotó y caímos del revés.
c. boca abajo
The parachuter landed upside down in a tree and called for help.El paracaidista cayó boca abajo en un árbol y gritó pidiendo ayuda.
d. patas arriba
The party attendees destroyed the house and left everything upside down.Los asistentes de la fiesta arrasaron la casa y dejaron todo patas arriba.
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