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Quick answer
"Undertones" is a form of "undertone", a noun which is often translated as "el trasfondo". "Permeate" is a transitive verb which is often translated as "impregnar". Learn more about the difference between "undertones" and "permeate" below.
undertone
A noun is a word referring to a person, animal, place, thing, feeling or idea (e.g. man, dog, house).
1. (underlying quality)
a. el trasfondo
(m) means that a noun is masculine. Spanish nouns have a gender, which is either feminine (like la mujer or la luna) or masculine (like el hombre or el sol).
What she has written is a comedy, but with dark undertones.Lo que ha escrito es una comedia, pero con un trasfondo siniestro.
2. (low voice)
a. la voz baja
(f) means that a noun is feminine. Spanish nouns have a gender, which is either feminine (like la mujer or la luna) or masculine (like el hombre or el sol).
"Go now, before he sees you," said Lucy in an undertone."Vete ahora, antes de que te vea", dijo Lucy en voz baja.
3. (muted color or scent)
a. el matiz
(m) means that a noun is masculine. Spanish nouns have a gender, which is either feminine (like la mujer or la luna) or masculine (like el hombre or el sol).
The aftershave has a citrus scent with woody undertones.La loción para después de afeitarse tiene una fragancia de cítricos con matices de madera.
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permeate
A transitive verb is a verb that requires a direct object (e.g. I bought a book.).
1. (to enter into)
a. impregnar
The leak permeated every level of the building.La fuga impregnó todos los pisos del edificio.
b. penetrar
The patient made it to the hospital before the venom could completely permeate his system.El paciente consiguió llegar al hospital antes de que el veneno penetrara su sistema por completo.
c. calar
Water from the rainstorm permeated the ceiling and now we've got leaks everywhere.El agua del aguacero caló el techo y ahora tenemos goteras por todos lados.
2.
A phrase used as a figure of speech or a word that is symbolic in meaning; metaphorical (e.g. carrot, bean).
(figurative)
(to infiltrate)
a. impregnar
The people are furious about the corruption that has all but completely permeated the government.El pueblo está furioso sobre la corrupción que ha impregnado al gobierno casi completamente.
b. calar
This ecological mentality is finally permeating our ideology.Esta mentalidad ecológica por fin está calando nuestra ideología.
c. estar presente en
There is still an unspoken racism that permeates our culture.Todavía existe un racismo oculto que está presente en nuestra cultura.
An intransitive verb is one that does not require a direct object (e.g. The man sneezed.).
3. (to spread)
a. penetrar
Cigarette smoke had permeated into the furniture and the plaster over the years.El humo de tabaco había penetrado a través de los muebles y el yeso a lo largo de los años.
b. extenderse
We cannot allow this kind of hateful rhetoric to permeate through our country.No podemos permitir que este tipo de retórica llena de odio se extienda por nuestro país.
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