Quick answer
"Find out" is a transitive verb phrase which is often translated as "averiguar", and "discover" is a transitive verb which is often translated as "descubrir". Learn more about the difference between "find out" and "discover" below.
find out(
A transitive verb phrase is a phrase that combines a verb with a preposition or other particle and requires a direct object (e.g. Take out the trash.).
transitive verb phrase
1. (to learn)
a. averiguar
They soon found out the flower shop was a front.Pronto averiguaron que la florería era una tapadera.
b. descubrir
Mom is going to be mad when she finds out you lied about the broken plate.Mamá se va a poner furiosa cuando descubra que mentiste sobre el plato roto.
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
2. (to become aware)
a. enterarse
The company didn't find out about the incident until it was contacted by the police.La compañía no se enteró del incidente hasta que la policía se puso en contacto con ellos.
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A transitive verb is a verb that requires a direct object (e.g. I bought a book.).
1. (to observe for the first time)
a. descubrir
We have not yet discovered life on other planets.Todavía no hemos descubierto vida en otros planetas.
2. (to find)
a. hallar
Yesterday the body of a woman was discovered in a garbage dump not far from the city.Ayer el cuerpo sin vida de una mujer fue hallado en un basurero próximo a la ciudad.
b. encontrar
During their search the police discovered a large haul of cocaine.Durante el registro la policía encontró un gran alijo de cocaína.
3. (to notice)
a. descubrir
I get up and go to my office, only to discover that it is Sunday.Me levanto y me voy a la oficina, para descubrir que es domingo.
b. darse cuenta de
It was then that I discovered I had left my umbrella in the restaurant.Fue entonces cuando me di cuenta de que había dejado el paraguas en el restaurante.
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