4.E Verb gustar

The Spanish verb ‘gustar’ is very commonly used to express likes, interests and preferences. However, the construction of sentences expressing likes/dislikes in Spanish is very different from that used in English.

In this lesson you’ll learn to use he verb ‘gustar’, the indirect object pronouns and the use of prepositional phrases to emphasize or clarify the indirect object pronoun.

Me gusta la comida sana                  I like healthy food.


To construct this type of sentence, you will use the indirect object pronouns.

These are the indirect object pronouns in Spanish:

  • (Yo) me
  • (Tú) te
  • (Él, Ella, Usted) le
  • (Nosotros) nos
  • (Vosotros) os
  • (Ellos, Ellas, Ustedes) les

After choosing the right indirect object pronoun (according to the person that likes the thing) it is time to conjugate the verb.

When speaking about things we like, there are only two possibilities: ‘gusta’ or ‘gustan’. This is because the verb is conjugated according to the subject, and the subject in this case is the thing we like, so we’ll use the third person singular or plural depending on whether the thing that “is pleasing to us” is singular or plural.

A ellas les gusta correr

Check these examples:

  • Me gusta el fútbol = I like fútbol.
  • Nos gustan los helados = We like ice-cream.
  • ¿Os gusta el deporte? = Do you like sports?

Also, we sometimes use prepositional phrases in order to clarify who likes the thing (because, for instance ,’le’ could refer to él, ella or usted).

These are the prepositional phrases you’ll find in Spanish:

  • A mí
  • A tí
  • A él / ella / usted
  • A nosotros-as
  • A vosotros-as
  • A ellos/ellas/ustedes

Also, after the ‘A’ you could just mention the name of the person:

  • A mi madre
  • A Luis
  • A los estudiantes

Apart from clarifying the indirect object pronoun, it can also be used to emphasize the person that likes the thing.


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El Español por el Mundo Copyright © by Gemma Morawski and Ani Alcocer is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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