How do you say I love you in Portuguese?

It is Valentine’s Day, the day when the verb “to love” is used even more than usual in the English language. When speaking English we love everything and everyone. The same doesn’t happen in Portuguese as the word “love” is feared by many and used by most solely for incredibly important things.

First things first: how do you say “I love you” in Portuguese? There’s plenty of ways to say we love/like something in Portuguese so let’s take a look at the main three.

1. Gostar

“Gostar” is translated as “to like” but is also a viable way to translate “to love” in some situations. Because the verb “to love” is used to exhaustion in English, it is often used for some things we only like and not love. That said, instead of “I love you” you can always use “gosto muito de ti” which literally means “I like you very much” and sounds much better in Portuguese than in English.

2. Adorar

“Adorar” something or someone is the next after “gostar”. “Adorar” is translated as “to adore”. Even if this isn’t a verb very commonly used in English, the translation is quite common in Portuguese and used by everyone who intends to tell someone they like them a lot but not quite ready to use the “love” word.

3. Amar

Finally the word you’ve been expecting! “Amar” is the accurate translation of “to love” and used by Portuguese when they actually love someone or something. So how to say “I love you” in Portuguese? It actually depends on if we’re talking about European or Brazilian Portuguese. In European Portuguese you’d say “amo-te” yet in Brazilian Portuguese you would say “te amo”. The difference is the personal pronoun “te” (which refers to “you”) that is used after the verb in European Portuguese and but before the verb in Brazilian Portuguese. This is one of the many differences between European and Brazilian Portuguese.

Now that we know how to use the verb, what about the noun? What is, after all, the Portuguese word for “love”? Easy: “amor”. It is pretty much the same as the verb with one letter different. Now that you’ve learned the very basics to celebrate this day why not learn some more beautiful words of the Portuguese language in one of our courses?



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