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Quick answer
"Estar bien" is an intransitive verb phrase which is often translated as "to be fine", and "ser" is a copular verb which is often translated as "to be". Learn more about the difference between "estar bien" and "ser" below.
estar bien(
ehs
-
tahr
 
byehn
)
An intransitive verb phrase is a phrase that combines a verb with a preposition or other particle and does not require a direct object (e.g. Everybody please stand up.).
intransitive verb phrase
1. (to be in good shape)
a. to be fine
Todo parece estar bien con sus documentos, señor.Everything seems to be fine with your documents, sir.
b. to be OK
Te prometo que dentro de poco todo va a estar bien.I promise you that in no time everything will be OK.
c. to be all right
No te preocupes por mí, voy a estar bien.Don't worry about me, I'll be all right.
d. to be good
La presentación del proyecto estuvo bien.The presentation of the project was good.
e. to be well
Jaime dice estar bien viviendo en el extranjero, pero yo creo que quiere regresar.Jaime says he's well living overseas, but I think he wants to come back.
2. (to be accurate)
a. to be right
Pensé que las medidas estaban bien, pero el sofá no cupo en la sala.I thought the measurements were right, but the sofa didn't fit into the living room.
b. to be correct
"El resultado está bien, pero ¿cómo lo obtuviste?" dijo el profesor."The result is correct, but how did you come to it?" said the teacher.
3. (to be healthy)
a. to be well
Después de meses de tratamiento, Melissa por fin está bien.After months of treatment, Melissa is finally well.
4. (to be on good terms)
a. to get along
Ana y yo estuvimos peleadas, pero ya estamos bien.Ana and I had a fight, but we're getting along now.
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ser(
sehr
)
A copular verb links the subject of a clause to the predicate (e.g. My brother is tall).
1. (used to talk about characteristics)
a. to be
Sus ojos son azules.Her eyes are blue.
Mi abuelo es profesor.My grandpa is a teacher.
An intransitive verb is one that does not require a direct object (e.g. The man sneezed.).
2. (used to indicate origin)
a. to be
Soy de Nueva York.I'm from New York.
3. (to serve as)
a. to be
El lápiz es para escribir, no para lanzar.Pencils are for writing, not for throwing.
4. (used to talk about prices)
a. to be
¿Cuánto quiere por este cuadro? - Son diez dólares.How much do you want for this picture? - It's ten dollars.
5. (to be composed of)
a. to be made of
El casillero antiguo de mi abuela es de roble.My grandma's antique dresser is made of oak.
6. (used to indicate possession)
a. to be
Este reloj es de mi madre.This watch is my mother's.
7. (to take place)
a. to be
La fiesta será en mi casa.The party will be at my place.
8. (to be associated with; used with "de")
a. to root for
Yo soy del mejor equipo del mundo: FC Barcelona.I root for the best team in the world: FC Barcelona.
An impersonal verb is a verb with no apparent subject (e.g. Llueve en España.).
9. (used to express time)
a. to be
Son las siete de la mañana.It is seven in the morning.
Era de noche cuando llegaron.It was night when they arrived.
An auxiliary verb, or helper verb, is a conjugated verb that comes before a main verb and determines the main verb's tense, mood, or aspect (e.g. I have gone.).
10. (with the passive voice)
a. to be
El edificio fue diseñado por un equipo de arquitectos.The building was built by a team of architects.
A masculine noun is used with masculine articles and adjectives (e.g. el hombre guapo, el sol amarillo).
11. (entity)
a. being
Hay un ser vivo en el lago, pero no sé qué es.There's a living being in the lake, but I don't know what it is.
12. (human)
a. person
Su papá es un ser muy agradable.Her dad is a very nice person.
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