Many students in my classes and daily life make mistakes like:
- Esto es mucho importante (The translation would be: “This is very important”
- Me gusta mucha (I like it very much)
- Yo bebo mucho agua (I drink a lot of water)
- Vivimos mucho lejos (We live very far)
So the confusion continues…
This is a mistake many students are making and also many non-native Spanish speakers, but above all, the ones who are just starting to experience this beautiful language. The important thing you need to know is how these two words work in the construction of regular sentences.
Another thing we need to keep in mind is MUCHO, MUCHA, MUCHOS, and MUCHAS, all mean “many” or “a lot”. The following table will show you in which cases to use them:
|Mucho||En Colombia hay mucho café. In Colombia there is a lot of coffee.|
|Mucha||En Latinoamérica hay mucha diversidad cultural. In Latin America there is a lot of cultural diversity.|
|Muchos||En Latinoamérica hay muchos tipos de arepa. In Latin America there are many types of arepa.|
|Muchas||En Colombia hay muchas ciudades bonitas. In Colombia there are many beautiful cities.|
As you can observe, there are differences in the meanings of these four words I just explained before. In Spanish, we use them depending on the noun gender we are referring to. The other matter we need to focus on is how to use MUY or MUCHO correctly. Well, the following table will show you:
|Muy+ adjective||Verb+ Mucho|
|Muy bonito/a/os/as:Juanita es muy bonita (Juanita is very pretty)Muy grande¡Este museo es muy grande! (This museum is very big)||Llueve mucho en Bogotá (It rains a lot in Bogotá)|
Gabriel come mucho (Gabriel eats a lot)Me gusta mucho( I like it very much)
As you can see, MUY means very and MUCHO could have two meanings depending on the context: a lot and very much.
There are many new elementary Spanish speakers that usually say “me gusta muy mucho”, but they are trying to translate “I like it so much”. We need to understand that “so much” is translated in Spanish as “mucho” and that is it. However, instead you should say “me gusta muchísmo”. That means “I like it so much”. Another example would be: “María Fernanda come muchisimo” (Maria Fernanda eats so much).
So keep in mind the previous examples for the next time you decide to use “muy” or “mucho in your conversations in Spanish.
Audio to practice
Check our article “You” in Spanish: usted, vos or tú? for another related topic.
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Written by Gise, professor at Whee.