Portuguese is considered a Romance language, along with Spanish, Italian, French, and Romanian. Portuguese is the official language of Portugal, Brazil, Angola, Cape Verde, Guinea Bissau, Mozambique, Sao Tome and Principe and Timor-Leste. Therefore, it presents great internal diversity, and for this reason, it is one of the main international languages of the world. Spoken by over 250 million people, Portuguese is the fifth most widely spoken language in the world.
As you may know, Portuguese is spoken slightly differently in Brazil than it is in Portugal, so if you want to know how to speak Portuguese, you may be wondering: Do Brazilian and Portuguese Speakers Understand Each Other? The level of differences between Brazilian and European Portuguese are comparable to the level of differences between American and British English. And as we all know, the American people have been able to communicate with each other for years! It happens the same with Brazil and Portugal!
Sentences are usually built with the same structure in English and Portuguese.
Subject + Verb + Object
Ela estuda Português.
She studies Portuguese.
Statement, Question, Negative Statement
Ela estuda Português. => She studies Portuguese.
Ela estuda Português? => Does she study Portuguese?
Ela não estuda Português. => She doesn’t study Portuguese.
Like in English, the capital letter is usually used to begin a sentence, to write proper nouns, etc…, but unlike English, in Portuguese the lower case letter is used to write months, nationalities and days of the week, the intonation between a statement and a question is different. To make a question in Portuguese you just need to raise your voice at the end of the sentence as in English. For negative sentences use the word “Não” (no/not) before the verb in Portuguese.
If you want to know how to speak Portuguese for an upcoming trip, you might find it helpful to pick up a few common terms you’re likely to find on signs:
Bem Vindo Welcome
Homem Man / Gentleman
Mulher Woman/ Lady
Não é Permitido Not allowed
Proibido estacionar No parking