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Common mistakes in Spanish – D

Dé / de

Here is an example of when the accent mark is used to mark a difference in meaning.

: Form of the verb "dar".
De: Preposition.

Example:
Juan no lo cogerá aunque usted se lo .
Ese coche es de Luís.

De 2004 / del 2004

According to the latest ruling of the Royal Academy of the Spanish Language, in dates that are included in letters, documents and newspapers the year should appear without the article: "20 de abril de 2004".
In other cases we can add the article: "20 de abril del 2004".

Example:
Esa carta está fechada el 20 de abril de 2003.
Me iré a Méjico el 18 de Agosto del 2005.

Deber / deber de

Deber indicates obligation.
Deber de indicates probability.

Example:
Debes estudiar más.
Las llaves deben de estar en la entrada.

Demás / de más

Demás: Indefinite pronoun that indicates the part that is not mentioned. Equivalent to "los otros/as".
De más: Preposition plus adverb of quantity.

Example:
Sólo está Juan. Los demás no han venido.
Me has dado dinero de más.

Dequeísmo

A phenomenon that consists in adding "de que" to verbs related to language or opinion, such as "decir" (to say) or "pensar" (to think).
Normally these verbs are only followed by "que".

Example:
Incorrect: *Me dijo de que irías con él.
Correct: Me dijo que irías con él.

Drogas

A word that causes confusion given its English false friend "drugs". In medical language this should be translated as "fármacos". Never as "drogas".

Example:
Esa empresa es una gran distribuidora de fármacos.

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