501 Portuguese Verbs (501 Verb Series) 2nd Edition
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- Publisher : Barron's Educational Series; 2nd edition (May 1, 2005)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 592 pages
- ISBN-10 : 0764129163
- ISBN-13 : 978-0764129162
- Item Weight : 1.71 pounds
- Dimensions : 6 x 1 x 9 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #315,055 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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For example, it goes into quite a lot of detail concerning reflexive verb usage, object pronouns, passive voice, the progressive tense, and irregular past participles. Yet, there is little to no discussion at all about the various tenses and moods presented in the tables! Nowhere, for example, will you find a description of what the subjunctive mood is or when to use it - one of the trickiest things for English speakers to master. Completely lacking is any discussion of how to use each of the numerous past and future tenses. And nowhere will you find a discussion of the two most unusual and unique features of Portuguese verbs: the personal infinitive and the future subjunctive. Given how much attention is paid to far more arcane topics, it's just bizarre what has been left out.
That said, having already studied these missing topics using other resources (I highly recommend Modern Brazilian Portuguese Grammar by John Whitlam), I found that this book really helped me see the big picture and synthesize everything I had learned about the huge variety of tenses and moods available in Portuguese. After using this book for over a year, my verb usage has become more sophisticated, I've been able to memorize the irregular verbs that were giving me trouble, and I've learned quite a lot of new verbs.
The reference part of this book is solid, with a good selection of verbs showing every possible conjugation, tense, and mood. The handful of sample sentences at the bottom of each page does a good job of illustrating how each verb is used in its various shades of meaning. I would have appreciated it if the authors had also included the most common expressions and the appropriate prepositions to use with each verb -- a good dictionary is still necessary for these.
The additional English->Portuguese and Portuguese->English glossaries in the back vastly increase the value of this book, since they include an additional 1,000 verbs cross-referenced to similar verbs whose full conjugations are given in the main section.
The book is great for beginners in that you can look up many common verbs and select your form and tense. However the full benefit of the book is realized when it is used to teach you how to conjugate by example so that you will know how to conjugate verbs that are not in this book. For example, look up 3 verbs in the book ending in 'ar' and note the similarities in how their endings change with form and tense then pick an 'ar' verb out of your dictionary and apply those same endings. With practice the rules of conjugating will start to click.
What can we do?. Which are our options?. Well, we really don't have much choice. It is either learn those annoying and somehow distressing verbs, or face the dire fate of never learning to speak Portuguese well. Can you imagine yourself in a situation inspired in the classical "Me Tarzan, you Jane"?. I bet your answer is no, if you can avoid it.
So the real question is not whether you will learn Portuguese verbs, but how to make the whole verb learning experience less traumatic. This book is, in my opinion, a good answer to that question. Yes, it is neither original nor overly engaging, but it is very useful. It has 501 Portuguese verbs, fully conjugated in all tenses, and even samples of how each verb is used in everyday conversation. The only reason why I don't give it five stars is because it doesn't explain too well the grammatical conjugation rules, even though it mentions them. All the same, I think that wasn't the aim of the book, and that if you cannot avoid having to learn verbs (and nobody who really wants to speak Portuguese well can), you should tackle the task with some good tools. I recommend this one :)
Top reviews from other countries
how the Portuguese verb, in all its forms - tenses (present, past, future ) and moods (indicative,imperative,interrogative,conditional and the closely related subjunctive ) - works.The active and passive voice forms are also covered. I have already got the Russian, Japanese and Latin editions of this book and one welcome addition in the layout of the Portuguese version is that there are Portuguese sentence examples (with English translations) of how each verb is used. This is indeed very helpful. My Russian version of the 501 Verb series has no sentence examples of usage. Japanese (no sentence examples of usage) and Latin - has individual sentence examples but no translations! In fact, I actually emailed the author of the Latin version asking why he had not provided translations of the sentence examples. He replied saying - he had no room on the page!! Yeah, right. The Portuguese version of the 501 series has about 3 - 4 sentence examples with translations for each verb entry!! Perhaps this sentence examples with translations is a feature unique to the Portuguese version? I feel all languages in the 501 verbs series should have this feature. It enhances the book's usefulness and makes for a better understanding of how the verb works.
A great book!!
Gobstoppers 250g / 8.8 ounces
For those who had no grammar taught at school the tenses are explained in the forward helping you become familiar with the natural way of speaking..
I find myself looking through a verb and immerse myself without having to try and study.