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Quick answer
"Escribir" is a transitive verb which is often translated as "to write", and "leer" is a transitive verb which is often translated as "to read". Learn more about the difference between "escribir" and "leer" below.
escribir(
ehs
-
kree
-
beer
)
A transitive verb is a verb that requires a direct object (e.g. I bought a book.).
1. (to put in writing)
a. to write
El alumno escribió su ensayo de 20 páginas dentro de una noche.The student wrote his 20-page essay in one night.
Escribe lo que digo.Write what I say.
2. (to compose)
a. to write
Me escribió una canción de amor.He wrote me a love song.
An impersonal verb is a verb with no apparent subject (e.g. Llueve en España.).
3. (to spell)
a. to write
Los nombres propios se escriben con mayúscula.Proper nouns are written with capital letters.
escribirse
A reciprocal verb is a verb that indicates that two or more subjects perform an action on each other (e.g. Ellos se abrazan.).
4. (to correspond)
a. to write to each other
Nos escribimos todos los días.We write to each other every day.
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leer(
leh
-
ehr
)
A transitive verb is a verb that requires a direct object (e.g. I bought a book.).
1. (to look through)
a. to read
Deberías leer las obras completas de Shakespeare.You should read the complete works of Shakespeare.
2. (to guess the thoughts of)
a. to read
A ese jugador de póker es imposible leerle la cara.It's impossible to read that poker player's face.
3. (computing)
a. to read
Se produjo un error al leer el documento.An error occurred while reading the document.
4. (education)
a. to defend
Leyó su tesis doctoral frente a un panel de profesores.She defended her doctoral thesis in front of a panel of professors.
An intransitive verb is one that does not require a direct object (e.g. The man sneezed.).
5. (to look through text)
a. to read
Leo antes de acostarme para relajarme.I read before going to bed to relax.
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