Archive for Tener Posts

Tener Expressions – Idiomatic Expressions Using The Spanish Verb Tener

Idiomatic expressions using the Spanish verb tener are common but before going into these expressions in more detail I will explain what an idiom is for those of you who may not know.

In short, an idiom is an expression that cannot be immediately understood if translated literally. A few examples of idioms in English are: to have ‘a strong stomach‘, to be ‘as good as new‘ and to ‘jump the gun‘.

There are many such idioms in Spanish and many of these use the verb Tener

Idiomatic Expressions Using Tener

There are quite a few idioms that use tener followed by a noun whereas in English ‘to be’ would be used followed by an adjective.

  • tener … años – to be … years old
  • tener calor – to be hot
  • tener cuidado – to be careful
  • tener en cuenta – to keep in mind
  • tener éxito – to be successful
  • tener frío – to be cold
  • tener ganas de – to be eager to do, to feel like
  • tener gracia – to be funny
  • tener hambre – to be hungry
  • tener miedo – to be afraid
  • tener paciencia – to be patient
  • tener prisa – to be in a hurry
  • tener razón – to be right
  • tener sed – to be thirsty
  • tener sueño – to be sleepy
  • tener suerte – to be lucky

There are also those expressions that use tener que followed by an infinitive which translates as ‘to have to’ or ‘must’:

  • tener que hacer – to have things to do
  • tener que ver con – to have to do with
  • tener que salir – to have to go out
  • tener que comer – to have to eat

Links for other posts about using the Spanish verb Tener:

Tener in the Subjunctive

Tener in the Subjunctive, as with the the indicative, is extremely irregular in all tenses. The subjunctive as outlined in previous posts is used a lot more in Spanish than it is in English where it is rarely put to use.

Although I will probably be shot by the language purists who may read read this, the average student need not worry too much about the subjunctive in Spanish because the indicative mood and it’s tenses are used much more frequently and are much more worthy of attention. Having said that, if you are a more advanced student then the following conjugations of Tener will be of great use to you.

Tener in the Subjunctive

Present Tense Subjunctive

  • (yo) tenga
  • (tú) tengas
  • (él/ella/usted) tenga
  • (nosotros/as) tengamos
  • (vosotros/as) tengáis
  • (ellos/ellas/ustedes) tengan

Imperfect Tense Subjunctive

  • (yo) tuviera or tuviese
  • (tú) tuvieras or tuvieses
  • (él/ella/usted) tuviera or tuviese
  • (nosotros/as) tuviéramos or tuviésemos
  • (vosotros/as) tuvierais or tuvieseis
  • (ellos/ellas/ustedes) tuvieran or tuviesen

Future Tense Subjunctive

  • (yo) tuviere
  • (tú) tuvieres
  • (él/ella/usted) tuviere
  • (nosotros/as) tuviéremos
  • (vosotros/as) tuviereis
  • (ellos/ellas/ustedes) tuvieren

Click on the link below for the required tense of Tener:

Tener Future Tense

Tener future tense, as with so many of the other tenses for this verb, is extremely irregular. As you will see from the formation of each conjugation, tener changes the ending ‘e’ for a ‘d’ whereas the regular conjugation for ‘-er‘ verbs would remain unchanged.

Although tener future tense is not too difficult to learn in itself, remembering to change the ‘e’ to a ‘d’ when used in conversation is easily forgotten…practice makes perfect they say! However, remembering things like this can be made a lot easier if you regularly use a verb training tool called the Verbarrator. Learn more here.

Tener Future Tense Conjugation

  • 1st person singular (yo) tendré – I will have
  • 2nd person singular (tú) tendrás – you will have
  • 3rd person singular (él/ella/usted) tendrá – he/she and you will have
  • 1st person plural (nosotros/as) tendremos – we will have
  • 2nd person plural (vosotros/as) tendréis – you will have
  • 3rd person plural (ellos/ellas/ustedes) tendrán – they/you will have

Other Tener Tense posts:

Tener Preterite Tense

The preterite form of tener is highly irregular Spanish verb but unfortunately is unavoidable as it is frequently used.

There is only really one way to learn tener preterite and that is to memorize it, although this process can be made far easier by using a verb training tool, one such tool is the Verbarrator … check it out!

Tener Preterite Conjugation

  • 1st person singular (yo) tuve – I had
  • 2nd person singular (tú) tuviste – you had
  • 3rd person singular (él/ella/usted) tuvo – he/she and you had
  • 1st person plural (nosotros/as) tuvimos – we had
  • 2nd person plural (vosotros/as) tuvisteis – you had
  • 3rd person plural (ellos/ellas/ustedes) tuvieron – they/you had

Other tener posts:

Tener Imperfect Tense

The imperfect tense of the Spanish verb tener is one of two past tenses regularly used in Spanish. Fortunately, the imperfect tense of tener follows the regular conjugation pattern as used for ‘-er‘ verbs unlike the other past tense, the preterite which is highly irregular.

In fact most of the tenses for Tener are irregular and learning them can be difficult but learning each tense can be made a lot easier with the use of a verb training tool such as the Verbarrator for which you can discover more info here.

Tener Imperfect Conjugation

  • 1st person singular (yo) tenía – I was having
  • 2nd person singular (tú) tenías – you were having
  • 3rd person singular (él/ella/usted) tenía – he/she was and you were having
  • 1st person plural (nosotros/as) teníamos – we were having
  • 2nd person plural (vosotros/as) teníais – you were having
  • 3rd person plural (ellos/ellas/ustedes)tenían – they/you were having

Other Tener posts

Tener Present Tense

The present tense of the Spanish verb tener is one of those tenses that is an absolute necessity to know well. Tener present tense formation combine two common forms of irregular verb structure.

Firstly it is known as a ‘go’ irregular which is the name given to Spanish irregular verbs that end in -go in the first person singular of the present tense and…secondly, it is an e’ to ‘ie’ verb, which means that the e in the stem of the verb changes to ‘ie’ in the second and third person singular and third person plural.

If that sounds a little confusing do not worry as the conjugation table below shows these irregularities of tener present tense very clearly.

However, learning the present tense of tener can be made even easier still by utilizing a verb training tool called the Verbarrator for which you can find more information here if you want to learn more about learning Spanish verbs better and much more quickly.

Tener Present Tense Conjugation

  • 1st person singular (yo) tengo – I have
  • 2nd person singular (tú) tienes – you have
  • 3rd person singular (él/ella/usted) tiene – he/she has and you have
  • 1st person plural (nosotros/as) tenemos – we have
  • 2nd person plural (vosotros/as) teneís – you have
  • 3rd person plural (ellos/ellas/ustedes) tienen – they/you have

Simply click on the required tense of Tener below:

Tener Conjugation – The Conjugation of Tener in Spanish

Tener ConjugationUnderstanding tener conjugation patterns is vitally important because the Spanish verb tener is one of the most commonly used verbs in the Spanish language.

This blog post will concentrate on the various different conjugations of tener but also, on the many different common idioms or expressions that tener is used for.

The conjugation of Tener is irregular in all but the future tense so it makes sense to break down each conjugation into seperate posts, each covering a specific tense, doing so should make learning this difficult irregular Spanish verb a lot easier to digest.

Simply click on the link for the required tense below:

Hope this post provides you with the help you need, why don’t you bookmark it so you can find it much more quickly and easily whenever you need it.