In this Portuguese lesson I will show you how to use the correct preposition to thank people for something they have done for you.
I often see advanced Portuguese speakers making mistakes when saying simple things such as “Thank you for the information” or “Thank you for helping me.” Starting today, you will be able to always say it right. In the video, I will also give you and important pronunciation tips.
Why are Prepositions Difficult?
Learning how to correctly use prepositions is a challenge for every learner of Portuguese. The main reason it is so difficult is because in most of the cases you cannot simply translate these prepositions to your language. Different languages match verbs and prepositions differently. Therefore the same preposition will have different translations when used with different verbs.
My advice is to focus on one situation or one verb at a time. Today we will focus on expressing gratitude.
Pronunciation Tips in the Video
You already know from a previous lesson that women say Obrigada and men say Obrigado. To learn why this is so and to get a tip on how we pronounce these words colloquially in Brazil, please visit this previous lesson. It was my very first Youtube video lesson. It is funny to see how things have changed 🙂
In this lesson I give you two additional pronunciation tips that will certainly make your Portuguese sound much better. Watch the video lesson below for the tips, and subscribe to our YouTube channel.
Obrigado por or Obrigado para?
To thank people for something they have done for you, use the preposition Por.
I constantly see people saying things like:
- Obrigado para me ajudar.
= Thank you for helping me.
Using the preposition Para with Obrigado is always incorrect. You need to use the preposition Por and you need to know how to contract it with the definite articles. It is easy. Let me show you.
How to use “obrigado” followed by a verb
When you have a verb after the word obrigado, simply use the preposition Por. Notice that we use the verb in the infinitive in Portuguese:
- Obrigada por me ajudar com o relatório.
= Thank you for helping me with the report.
- Obrigada por organizar a reunião.
= Thank you for organizing the meeting.
- Obrigada por me dar uma carona.
= Thank you for giving me a ride.
How to use “obrigado” followed by a noun
When you have a noun after the word obrigado, you will likely also have a definite article before the noun. In this case, you need to use one of the contractions of the preposition Por :
- Por + o = pelo
- Por + a = pelas
- Por + os = pelos
- Por + as = pelas
This is because the preposition Por needs to contract with the definite article, and the resulting preposition needs to agree in gender (masculine/feminine) and number (singular/plural) with the noun that it refers to. It is easy. Let me deconstruct one example for you. Imagine you’d like to say:
- Thank you for the gift.
If you translate this literally from English to Portuguese, you will have:
- Obrigado por o presente.
Por + o will always contract into pelo. So you have:
- Obrigado pelo presente.
A little summary:
- Before a masculine singular noun, use pelo
- Before a feminine singular noun, use pela
- Before a masculine plural noun, use pelos
- before a feminine singular noun, use pelas
Let’s see additional examples:
- Obrigado pela informação.
= Thank you for the information.
- Obrigado pelo conselho.
= Thank you for the advice.
- Obrigada pela carona.
= Thank you for the ride.
- Obrigado pelos livros.
= Thank you for the books.
- Obrigado pelas flores.
= Thank you for the flowers.
Thank you for reading our blog and watching our Portuguese lesson. I hope this will make you confident when thanking your Brazilian friends and coworkers.
Subscribe to our Youtube channel for more Portuguese lessons.
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