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100 Most Frequently Used Spanish Words


The word list below is based on a scientific study conducted by Mark Davies. For a much longer list of the most common 5000 Spanish words (!), consult his book A Frequency Dictionary of Spanish. Core Vocabulary for Learners


1. el / la (def. art.) the
2. de (prep.) of, from
3. que (conj.) that, which
4. y (conj.) and
5. a (prep.) to, at
6. en (prep.) in, on
7. un (indef. art.) a, an
8. ser (verb) to be
9. se (pron.) -self, oneself [reflexive marker]
10. no (adv.) no
11. haber (verb) to have
12. por (prep.) by, for, through
13. con (prep.) with 
14. su (adj.) his, her, their, your (fam.)
15. para (prep.) for, to, in order to
16. como (conj.) like, as
17. estar (verb) to be
18. tener (verb) to have
19. le (pron.) [3rd pers. indirect object pronoun]
20. lo (art.) the (+ noun)
21. lo (pron.) [3rd pers. masc. direct object pronoun]
22. todo (adj.) all, every
23. pero (conj.) but, yet, except 
24. más (adj.) more
25. hacer (verb.) to do, make
26. o (conj.) or
27. poder (verb) to be able to, can 
28. decir (verb) to tell, say
29. este (adj.) this (m); esta (f)
30. ir (verb) to go 
31. otro (adj.) other, another
32. ese (adj.) that (m); esa (f)
33. la (pron.) [3rd pers. fem. direct object pronoun]
34. si (conj.) if, whether
35. me (pron.) me 
36. ya (adv.) already, still
37. ver (verb) to see
38. porque (conj.) because
39. dar (verb) to give
40. cuando (conj.) when 
41. él (pron.) he
42. muy (adv.) very, really
43. sin (prep.) without
44. vez (noun, f.) time, occurrence 
45. mucho (adj.) much, many, a lot
46. saber (verb) to know
47. qué (pron.) what?, which?, how (+ adj.)
48. sobre (prep.) on top of, over, about
49. mi (adj.) my
50. alguno (adj.) some; (pron.) someone
51. mismo (adj.) same
52. yo (pron.) I
53. también (adv.) also
54. hasta (prep.) until, up to; (adv.) even
55. año (noun, m.) year
56. dos (num.) two
57. querer (verb) to want, love
58. entre (prep.) between
59. así (adv.) like that
60. primero (adj.) first
61. desde (prep.) from, since
62. grande (adj.) large, great, big
63. eso (pron., n.) that
64. ni (conj.) not even, neither, nor 
65. nos (pron.) us
66. llegar (verb) to arrive
67. pasar (verb) to pass, spend (time)
68. tiempo (noun, m.) time, weather
69. ella (pron.) sheellas them
70.  (adv.) yes
71. día (noun, m.) day
72. uno (num.) one
73. bien (adv.) well
74. poco (adj.) little few; (adv.) a little bit
75. deber (verb) should, ought to; to owe
76. entonces (adv.) so, then
77. poner (verb) to put (on); get (+ adj.)
78. cosa (noun, f.) thing
79. tanto (adj.) much
80. hombre (noun, m.) man, mankind, husband
81. parecer (verb) to seem, look like
82. nuestro (adj.) our
83. tan (adv.) such, a, too, so
84. donde (conj.) where 
85. ahora (adv.) now
86. parte (noun, f.) part, portion
87. después (adv.) after
88. vida (noun, f.) life
89. quedar (verb) to remain, stay
90. siempre (adv.) always
91. creer (verb) to believe
92. hablar (verb) to speak, talk
93. llevar (verb) to take, carry
94. dejar (verb) to let, leave 
95. nada (pron.) nothing
96. cada (adj.) each, every
97. seguir (verb) to follow
98. menos (adj.) less, fewer
99. nuevo (adj.) new
100. encontrar (verb) to find


Source:

A Frequency Dictionary of Spanish. Core Vocabulary for Learners
By Mark Davies, 286 p. (2006)


This provides a frequency list of the most common 5000 words in the Spanish language based on a broad text corpus of 20 million Spanish words. The corpus includes a balanced sampling of written and spoken language and a balanced representation of variants used in Spain and Latin America. Each dictionary entry lists the word's rank, part of speech, its English translation, a sentence demonstrating the word's usage in context, and the number of occurrences of the word per million words of the corpus. In addition, the dictionary contains much supplemental information that students and instructors will find useful. There is an additional alphabetical list of the 5000 words, ordered lists of the most frequent Spanish nouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs, and other parts of speech. Of interest are also the 30 additional informational boxes interspersed throughout the book. These include ordered lists of thematically linked words (e.g., colors, weather, family terms, opposites, verbs of movement) as well as differences in registers and more. This is a useful book for instructors and students alike.


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