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Quick answer
"Defecto" is a noun which is often translated as "defect", and "cualidad" is a noun which is often translated as "quality". Learn more about the difference between "defecto" and "cualidad" below.
defecto(
deh
-
fehk
-
toh
)
A masculine noun is used with masculine articles and adjectives (e.g. el hombre guapo, el sol amarillo).
1. (flaw in a person)
a. defect (physical)
Mi abuela tenía un defecto en un ojo y no veía bien.My grandmother had a defect in her eye and she could not see properly.
b. fault (moral)
Mi peor defecto es que soy extremadamente celosa.My biggest fault is that I am extremely jealous.
c. shortcoming (moral)
El profesor es muy bueno, pero tiene el defecto de gritar cuando habla.The teacher is very good, but his shortcoming is that he shouts when speaking.
2. (imperfection of a thing)
a. flaw
Marisa encontró un pequeño defecto en el vestido, pero apenas se veía.Marisa found a little flaw in the dress, but it was barely visible.
b. fault
La computadora nueva tenía un defecto, así que la devolví a la tienda.The brand new computer had a fault, so I took it back to the shop.
c. defect
La garantía de este teléfono celular cubre todos defectos dentro del primer año.The guarantee of this cellphone covers all defects within the first year.
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cualidad(
kwah
-
lee
-
dahd
)
A feminine noun is almost always used with feminine articles and adjectives (e.g. la mujer bonita, la luna llena).
1. (positive characteristic)
a. quality
Mi mejor cualidad es la honestidad, y mi principal defecto, la timidez.My best quality is honesty, and my main defect is shyness.
b. virtue
Tiene muchas cualidades, pero la generosidad no está entre ellas.She has many virtues, but generosity is not one of them.
2. (characteristic)
a. quality (of a person)
La curiosidad puede ser una cualidad positiva o negativa.Curiosity can be a positive or a negative quality.
b. property (of a plant or a substance)
Las cualidades inherentes del acero son dureza y resilencia.The inherent properties of steel are hardness and resilience.
c. attribute
Estos héroes encarnan cualidades caballerescas, como un marcado sentido del honor.These heroes embody knightly attributes, such as an acute sense of honor.
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