Predicate for Spanish and English

Man and woman with illustrated jumble of letters
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A predicate is the part of the sentence that complements the subject by indicating either a state of being or an action.

Generally speaking, a complete sentence has a subject and a predicate. The subject typically is a noun or pronoun (in Spanish, the subject doesn't have to be explicitly stated) that either performs some action or is described after the verb. In a sentence such as "The woman is reading the book" (La mujer lee el libro), the subject of the sentence is "the woman" (la mujer) and the predicate is "is reading the book" (lee el libro).

Predicates can be classified as either verbal or nominal. A verbal predicate indicates some sort of action. In the sample sentence, "reads the book" is a verbal predicate. A nominal predicate uses a copulative verb (most commonly a form of "to be" in English, ser or estar in Spanish) to identify or describe the subject. In the sentence "The woman is happy," the nominal predicate is "is happy" (está feliz).

Also Known As

Predicado in Spanish.


In the sentence "I would like a cup of coffee," (Yo quisiera una taza de café) the predicate is "would like a cup of coffee" (quisiera una taza de café). In the sentence Están mas fuertes que nunca (They are stronger than ever), the entire sentence in Spanish is the predicate because the subject is not stated. (In the English translation, the predicate is "are stronger than ever").

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Erichsen, Gerald. "Predicate for Spanish and English." ThoughtCo, Apr. 5, 2023, Erichsen, Gerald. (2023, April 5). Predicate for Spanish and English. Retrieved from Erichsen, Gerald. "Predicate for Spanish and English." ThoughtCo. (accessed June 6, 2023).