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Quick answer
"Escritorio" is a noun which is often translated as "desk", and "papelera" is a noun which is often translated as "wastepaper basket". Learn more about the difference between "escritorio" and "papelera" below.
escritorio(
ehs
-
kree
-
toh
-
ryoh
)
A masculine noun is used with masculine articles and adjectives (e.g. el hombre guapo, el sol amarillo).
1. (furniture)
a. desk
Es más fácil hacer la tarea en un escritorio que la mesa de la cocina.It is easier to do homework at a desk than at the kitchen table.
b. bureau (United Kingdom)
El escritorio de la reina Isabel está hecho de roble.Queen Elizabeth's bureau is made of oak.
2. (office)
a. office
Mi abogado tiene un escritorio en el centro de la ciudad.My lawyer has an office downtown.
3. (computer)
a. desktop
Haz clic en el ícono de la aplicación en el escritorio.Click on the application icon on the desktop.
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papelera(
pah
-
peh
-
leh
-
rah
)
A feminine noun is almost always used with feminine articles and adjectives (e.g. la mujer bonita, la luna llena).
1. (container for waste)
a. wastepaper basket (in an office or a house)
Tuve que rebuscar en la papelera para encontrar la nota con su teléfono.I had to rummage through the wastepaper basket to find the note with her phone number.
b. wastebasket (in an office or a house)
Regionalism used in the United States
(United States)
La papelera ya está llena; deberías vaciarla.The wastebasket is already full; you should empty it.
c. wastepaper bin (in an office or a house) (United Kingdom)
Rompió el contrato y tiró los trozos a la papelera.She ripped up the contract, and threw the pieces in the wastepaper bin.
d. garbage can (in the street)
Regionalism used in the United States
(United States)
El basurero vacía las papeleras a diario.The trash collector empties the garbage cans on a daily basis.
e. rubbish bin (in the street) (United Kingdom)
No encontramos ni una sola papelera en todo el pueblo.We couldn't find a single rubbish bin in the entire village.
2. (plant)
a. paper mill
Cada año, las papeleras utilizan toneladas de madera en la fabricación de papel.Paper mills use tons of wood each year to make paper.
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