Quick answer
"Disculpar" is a transitive verb which is often translated as "to forgive", and "perdonar" is a transitive verb which is also often translated as "to forgive". Learn more about the difference between "disculpar" and "perdonar" below.
disculpar(
dees
-
kool
-
pahr
)
A transitive verb is a verb that requires a direct object (e.g. I bought a book.).
1. (to pardon)
a. to forgive
Por favor, discúlpame por haber roto la guitarra.Please, forgive me for breaking the guitar.
b. to excuse
Discúlpeme por llegar unos minutos tarde.Excuse me for arriving a few minutes late.
An intransitive verb is one that does not require a direct object (e.g. The man sneezed.).
2. (to ask forgiveness)
a.
This refers to an idiomatic word or phrase for which there is no word-for-word translation.
no direct translation
Disculpe, por favor. ¿Me dice dónde está la parada del metro?Excuse me, please. Can you tell me where the subway station is?
Disculpa, no te he visto trabajando allí. Me pondré los cascos.I'm sorry, I didn't see you there working. I'll put headphones in.
disculparse
A pronominal verb always uses a reflexive pronoun. (e.g. Te ves cansado.).
3. (to admit guilt)
a. to apologize
Si te disculparas, quizás te perdonaría.If you apologized, perhaps he'd forgive you.
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perdonar(
pehr
-
doh
-
nahr
)
A transitive verb is a verb that requires a direct object (e.g. I bought a book.).
1. (to accept apology)
a. to forgive
¿Me perdonas por regalarte flores que te hacen estornudar?Will you forgive me for giving you flowers that make you sneeze?
2. (to absolve)
a. to pardon (legal)
El presidente lo perdonó y ya no tendrá que ir a la cárcel.The president pardoned him and now he won't have to go to jail.
3. (to excuse from an obligation)
a. to waive
El banco nos perdonó la cuota que cobran para abrir una cuenta nueva.The bank waived the fee they charge to open a new account.
b. to write off
No sé por qué, pero el banco nos perdonó la deuda que debemos de la casa.I don't know why, but the bank wrote off the debt we owe on the house.
4. (to let go by)
a. to miss
Mi tío no perdona un partido de fútbol.My uncle never misses a soccer game.
b. to go without
Mi mejor amiga nunca perdona su café de la tarde.My best friend never goes without her afternoon coffee.
perdonarse
A pronominal verb always uses a reflexive pronoun. (e.g. Te ves cansado.).
5. (to grant oneself forgiveness)
a. perdonarse
Ya es hora de que te perdones por los errores del pasado. It's time for you to forgive yourself for your past mistakes.
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