Vocabulary

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Let’s take a closer look at each of these expressions.
In the first conversation, do you remember how Mark says,
"Good morning, Ms. Hernandez?"
Buenos días, profesora Hernández.
First is Buenos días, "Good morning." Buenos días.
Let’s start with días, "days." Días (enunciated). Días.
In Spanish, all nouns have grammatical gender and are either singular or plural. Días is masculine and plural — a fact that will determine the form of other words in the sentence.
Next is buenos, "good." Buenos (enunciated). Buenos.
Buenos is masculine and plural to agree with Días.
Together, Buenos días literally means “good days,” but it translates as "good morning” in this context. Buenos días.
This is the standard greeting during the morning. Buenos días.
Next is profesora, meaning “teacher.” Since it can also be used as a form of direct address, here "Ms." is used in the English translation instead. Profesora (enunciated). Profesora.
Profesora is feminine singular.
Finally, the teacher’s family name, Hernández. Hernández (enunciated). Hernández.
Together, profesora Hernández. “Ms. Hernandez.” Profesora Hernández.
All together, Buenos días, profesora Hernández. "Good morning, Ms. Hernandez."
Buenos días, profesora Hernández.
When including a person’s name in a greeting, it’s more common to say the person’s name after the greeting.
Note, using a person’s family name in a greeting may come across as more formal.
Do you remember the teacher’s response?
“Good morning, Mr. Lee.”
Buenos días, ingeniero Lee.
First is buenos días. "Good morning." buenos días.
Next is ingeniero, which literally means “engineer,” but translates as "Mr.” in this context. Ingeniero (enunciated). ingeniero.
The teacher addresses Mark with his job title as a sign of respect. In English, this would be similar to calling someone Mr.
Ingeniero is masculine and singular.
Finally, Mark’s family name in Spanish. Lee. Lee (enunciated). Lee.
All together, it’s, Buenos días, ingeniero Lee. Literally, “Good days, engineer Lee,” but translates as "Good morning, Mr. Lee."
Buenos días, ingeniero Lee.
Note, this exchange is formal.
In the second conversation, which takes place at noon, do you remember how Karen says,
"Good afternoon?"
Buenas tardes.
Note that Karen’s greeting is slightly less formal, as she doesn’t say the teacher’s name.
Buenas tardes. "Good afternoon." Buenas tardes.
Let’s start with tardes "afternoons." Tardes (enunciated). Tardes.
Tardes is feminine and plural — a fact that will determine the form of other words in the sentence.
Next is Buenas "good." Buenas (enunciated). Buenas.
Buenas is feminine and plural to agree with, tardes.
Together, Buenas tardes, literally means "Good afternoons," but it translates as "Good afternoon." This is the standard greeting from midday on.
Buenas tardes.
Do you remember how her teacher replies,
“Good afternoon, Ms. Lee.”
Buenas tardes, señora Lee.
First is Buenas tardes, "Good afternoon." Buenas tardes.
Next is señora meaning "Ms." señora (enunciated). señora.
This is an honorific for women. It’s similar to the term "Ms." in English.
Finally, Karen’s family name in Spanish. Lee. Lee (enunciated). Lee.
All together, it’s, Buenas tardes, señora Lee. "Good afternoon, Ms. Lee."
Buenas tardes, señora Lee.
In the third conversation, which takes place in the evening at 7 p.m., do you remember how Ben says,
"Good evening, teacher."
Buenas noches, profesora.
First is Buenas noches. "Good evening." Buenas noches.
Let’s start with noches, "nights." Noches (enunciated). Noches.
Noches is feminine and plural — a fact that will determine the form of other words in the sentence.
Next is Buenas, "good." Buenas (enunciated). Buenas.
Buenas is feminine and plural to agree with noches.
Together, Buenas noches, literally means "Good nights," but it translates as "good evening." This is the standard greeting during the evening. Buenas noches.
After this is, profesora, "teacher." Profesora.
This is the feminine, singular form of the word, profesor. Adding her title increases the formality of the greeting.
All together it’s Buenas noches, profesora. "Good evening, teacher."
Buenas noches, profesora.
Do you remember how the teacher replies,
"Good evening, Ben."
Buenas noches, Ben.
First is Buenas noches. "Good evening." Buenas noches.
After this is Ben’s name in Spanish. Ben. Ben (enunciated). Ben.
Since he is a young adult, she refers to him by his first name.
All together, it’s, Buenas noches, Ben. "Good evening, Ben."
Buenas noches, Ben.
The greeting Buenos días is used during the morning, from early in the day until around 11:45am or so. Buenas tardes is used from around 12 pm, until it gets dark. Usually, until 6:45pm or so. Buenas noches is used after the sunset. Usually, from 7 pm.
In this lesson, Karen is addressed as "señora Lee." Señora is an honorific used for married women.
To address an unmarried woman there’s another honorific señorita, meaning "Miss." Señorita.
The word Señor, meaning “Mr.,” is used to address adult men in general, similar to the way "Mr." is used in English.
In work environments or when the situation is formal, it’s common in Mexico to use job titles if they’re known. In this lesson, for example, Mark called his teacher Profesora Hernández, and the teacher called him ingeniero Lee.

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SpanishPod101.com Verified
Friday at 06:30 PM
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Did you know the basic greetings introduced in this lesson?

SpanishPod101.com Verified
Saturday at 11:34 AM
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Hola Marie,


Thank you for your question.

They are synonymous, so you can use one instead of the other.

Sigamos practicando.


Saludos,

Carla

Team SpanishPod101.com

Marie
Sunday at 08:33 PM
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Hola!

I was wondering what the difference is between profesora and maestra?

Gracias!