EP word of the week (#82): “Parabéns a você!”

Hey, everyone!

On this day last year, I decided to take a leap forward with my desire in helping people learning EP and I started this blog, so it’s time to say Happy Birthday! :D

I’d like to take a moment to thank the people who have helped to me during this process, especially Elaine (I haven’t heard from you in a while, but you were key for me to make the jump from Duolingo to this more personal endeavour; I hope all is well with you), João (your insightful comments are always appreciated, and your likes help me know at least someone is engaged with the blog and keep going) and Yuliya (thank you for your questions and the support – I notice your likes too, and I sincerely hope you’re learning something with the blog or at least finding some motivation to keep your Portuguese studies)! But anyone who’s commented, followed the blog or was a friend helped make this happen :)

Today’s word of the week is more of an expression than an actual word: it’s actually the first line of the EP birthday song, which usually goes like this:

Parabéns a você (Happy Birthday to you)

Nesta data querida (In this dear/cherished date)

Muitas felicidades ([We wish you] many good things)

Muitos anos de vida ([and] a long life [i.e. many years of life])

Hoje é dia de festa (Today is a day for celebration)

Cantam as nossas almas (Our souls sing)

Para o/a menino/a [name of person/thing being celebrated] (for the little boy/girl [name])

Uma salva de palmas (a round of applause [for the birthday boy/girl])

As you can guess, Brazilians have different ways of singing the song; for example, theirs starts with “Parabéns para você”. As I’ve mentioned before, we use “você” in a very formal way in Portugal, but it stuck in this song – you’ll sing “Parabéns a você!” whether it’s for a friend, a co-worker, a distant family member, or someone you hardly know. Outside the microcosm of the song, however, you should go back to adjusting the pronouns/verb conjugations.

The same goes for [o] menino / [a] menina: you’re supposed to use it with people of all ages, from 1 to 111! This partly stems from the fact that 1) it’s a song, so there’s no point in adjust it; 2) It’s a cutesy way of showing how special the day is to someone (just like birthday boy and birthday girl in English). Just make sure the gender of the noun matches the preferred gender of the person in question, or just trying following along with the song – it’s usually way too loud to realize whether someone make a grammatical mistake, and no one would be that pedantic to correct you :P

Thanks again to everyone for reading the blog, and hopefully we’ll have a great second year together!



4 thoughts on “EP word of the week (#82): “Parabéns a você!”

  1. gaih January 23, 2017 / 9:48 pm

    Great job! Thank you Luís!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. João Duarte January 24, 2017 / 1:29 am

    I’m sorry that you “disappeared” from Duo, because an EP moderator is always in short supply, but I can imagine the frustration it is to not being able to integrate an EP course there when we have Klingon…
    My likes will keep coming because I truly admire the time you put into this work. :)

    Liked by 2 people

    • luisdomingos January 24, 2017 / 7:34 am

      Thank you for the kind words and the always present support, João :) At least with the blog I’m able to help people learn on my own terms – it may not be as fast as having a platform, but it’s great to know I’m personally helping some people with their progress :)


      Liked by 2 people

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