LEVAR VS. TRAZER
In Portuguese, the verbs levar and trazer may be confusing to some people. Levar (to take) is used to indicate a movement away from the speaker or the place where the speaker is at the moment of speaking while trazer (to bring) is used to indicate a movement toward the speaker or the place where the speaker is at the moment of speaking. If used to indicate a movement, levar (to take) is followed by the preposition lá/ali (there) while trazer (to bring) is followed by the preposition aqui (here). The preposition is often omitted, but try to use it at least mentally in order to make it easier to distinguish both and not misuse them. Another note, if you are talking about bringing or taking a person somewhere, use levar and not trazer. Levar is used to talk about human beings.
“eu vou levar o computador lá.” - ”i’m going to take the computer there.”
“ela vai trazer o celular aqui.” – “she’s going to bring the cell phone here.
“levei o dinheiro lá para pagar a conta.” - “i took the money there to pay the bill.”
“foi ele que trouxe a roupa suja aqui.” - ”he was the one who brought the dirty clothes here.”
“eu levei o bolo para a festa.” - ”i took the cake to the party.”
“minha tia trouxe a feijoada para a minha festa.” - ”my aunt brought feijoada to my party.”
“vou levar um presente para meu amigo no Brasil. Quando ele vier aos Estados Unidos, ele vai trazer um presente para mim.” - ”i’m going to take a present to my friend in Brazil. When he comes to the US, he’s going to bring me a present.”
If there are any other groups of similar words in Portuguese that get you confused please share them in the comments below. Thanks everyone!
Meanwhile, here are some other common mistakes made by Portuguese students: