Quick answer
"Nearer" is a form of "near", an adverb which is often translated as "cerca". "Closer to" is a phrase which is often translated as "más cerca de". Learn more about the difference between "closer to" and "nearer" below.
closer to
A phrase is a group of words commonly used together (e.g once upon a time).
phrase
1. (physically nearer to)
a. más cerca de
Why don't you stay at the Ritz instead? It's closer to the station.¿Por qué no te quedas en el Ritz en lugar del otro? Está más cerca de la estación.
2. (more intimate with)
a. más cercano a
I feel closer to my sister than to anyone else.Me siento más cercana a mi hermana que a cualquier otra persona.
3. (more in line with)
a. más afín a
My new job is closer to my usual line of work.Mi nuevo trabajo es más afín a mi línea habitual de trabajo.
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near(
nir
)
An adverb is a word that describes a verb, an adjective, or other adverbs (e.g. to run quickly, very tired).
1. (in space)
a. cerca
Are we near? I'm really tired.¿Estamos cerca? Estoy cansadísima.
2. (in time)
a.
This refers to an idiomatic word or phrase for which there is no word-for-word translation.
no direct translation
The day of the interview was getting nearer.Se acercaba el día de la entrevista.
The nearer I get to leaving, the harder it's becoming.A medida que se acerca mi partida, más difícil se me hace.
3. (in degree)
a.
This refers to an idiomatic word or phrase for which there is no word-for-word translation.
no direct translation
It's nowhere near as funny as his last movie.No es para nada tan graciosa como su última película.
This price is nearer to what I can afford.Este precio se acerca más a lo que puedo pagar.
4. (almost)
a. casi
She was kept in near total isolation.La guardaban casi totalmente aislada.
An adjective is a word that describes a noun (e.g. the big dog).
5. (in space)
a. cercano
The nearest gas station is 20 miles away.La gasolinera más cercana está a 20 millas de aquí.
6. (in time)
a. cercano
In the near future, we will be able to send humans to Mars.En un futuro cercano, podremos enviar seres humanos a Marte.
b. próximo
La boda ya está muy próxima.The wedding is very near now.
7. (something close to)
a.
This refers to an idiomatic word or phrase for which there is no word-for-word translation.
no direct translation
Violet was in a state of near despair when she realized what she'd done.Violet quedó al borde de la desesperación al darse cuenta de lo que había hecho.
What with the people who didn't show up without letting us know and the rain, the party was a near disaster.Entre la gente que faltó sin avisar y la lluvia, la fiesta fue casi un desastre.
A preposition is a word that indicates the relationship between a noun and another word (e.g. He ran through the door.).
8. (in space)
a. cerca de
I live near the hospital.Vivo cerca del hospital.
9. (in time)
a.
This refers to an idiomatic word or phrase for which there is no word-for-word translation.
no direct translation
Mike got injured near the end of the game.Mike se lesionó hacia el final del partido.
We'll talk about what food to buy nearer the day.Hablaremos más cerca de la fecha de qué comida hay que comprar.
10. (on the brink of)
a. a punto de
Sandra was near collapse when she got to the summit.Sandra estaba a punto de colapsar cuando llegó a la cima.
11. (almost)
a. cerca de
He’s nearer 40 than 30.Está más cerca de los 40 que de los 30.
A transitive verb is a verb that requires a direct object (e.g. I bought a book.).
12. (to get closer to)
a. acercarse a
We were nearing the top of the mountain.Nos estábamos acercando a la cima de la montaña.
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