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Why does the verb ‘volver’ confuse so much?

With the ‘volver’ verb Carlos Gardel titled the famous tango that sings the return to the first love; Pedro Almodóvar, the film for which Penélope Cruz was nominated for one Oscars, who narrates the survival of three generations of women, and Mexican singer and actor Vicente Fernández, the popular ranchera recites around the world “come back, come back” (“I know lose, I want to come back … “) Volver is a nostalgic and evocative verb, as I has demonstrated. But also it is a verb that confunde a lot Spanish students. In Spanish, we use this irregular verb of the second conjugation (ending in -er),  also irregular participle (vuelto) to come back to the starting point, turn around, or adopt a different aspect, according to the Panhispanic Dictionary of doubts of the RAE.  For us ‘volver’ is a verb of change of state or movement (vuelve a amanecerno me vuelvo a enamorar, vuelvo a casa sobre las diez). ‘Volver’ is to return (me voy pero vuelvo) and ‘volver’ it is also to repeat or insist (vuelvo a decir). ‘Volver’ is to return (vuelvo a mi antigua empresa) or to turn (vuelve ese calcetín del revés). ‘Volver’ is to reappear ((¡he vuelto!). ‘Volver’ is to come (vuelve mañana a la misma hora) but also ‘volver’ is to twist and turn ((no volvió la cabeza, vuelve la puerta un poco). And among other meanings, Spanish verb ‘volver’ is also change, transform, and become and / or disturb order things ((se volvió una fiera, el pesimista se volvió optimista, el amor se volvió odio, vuelve loco a cualquiera). In this post I leave some phrases for you to practice with it.


Listen the MP3:


Vuelve a amanecer.

(It dawned again.)

Vuelva usted mañana.

(Come back tomorrow.)

Vuelvo al sector privado.

(I returned to the private sector.)

Cuando vuelva a ser campeona.

(When I’m champion again…)

No me vuelvas a mentir.

(Do not lie to me again.)

Ya no vuelve a su antiguo cargo. 

(He no longer returns to his old position.)

Vuelve a la ciudad de Palencia.

(He / she returns to the city of Palencia.)

Va a volver a esquiar.

(He/ she is going to ski again.)

Es una gran noticia que vuelva.

(It’s a great news he’s back.)

¿Volverá a estar en sus cabales?

(Will he be in his right mind again?)

Espero que no vuelva a suceder.

(I hope it does not happen again.)

Se ha vuelto loco.

(It has gone mad.)

Volvemos a la calle.

(We returned to the street.)

Nos volvemos agresivos.

(We become aggressive.)

Volvemos a 1990.

(We go back to 1990.)

Volvemos al horario de verano.

(We go back to summer time.)

Volvemos a las raíces.

(We go back to the roots.)

Volví a adelgazar.

(I lost weight again.)

Volví a la iglesia.

(I went back to the church.)

Volví a caminar.

(I walked again.)

Nunca más la volví a ver.

(I never saw her again.)

Volví a empezar.

(I started again.)

Volví a nacer.

(I was reborn.)

Nunca volví a tener miedo.

(I never had fear again.)

¿Cuándo vas a volver?

(When are you coming back?)

Lo volvería a hacer.

(I would do it again.)

Volvería a intentarlo.

(I would try it again.)

Volvería con los ojos cerrados.

(I would return without a second thought.)

Si volviera atrás.

(If I go back…)

Se ha vuelto transversal.

(It has become transversal.)

Se ha vuelto viral.

(It has become viral.)

Ha vuelto cansado.

(He has come tired.)

Ha vuelto muy cansado.

(He has come very tired.)

Se ha vuelto frío y calculador.

(He has become cold and calculating.)

Se han vuelto bastante competentes.

(They have become quite competent.)

Se ha vuelto un experto.

(He has become an expert.)

Es para volverse del revés.

(It’s to turn the other way.)

Pía Valls/ PracticaEspañol 

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