The English word “either” and its multiple meanings in Spanish

It is very annoying when you are leaning a new language and you come across with one word that has different equivalents, and that is exactly what we are talking about today. An English word with several meanings in Spanish depending on what we want to express.

The inspiration for this blog actually came from one of my students when he asked me “¿cómo se dice “either” en español? I normally have the answer for that question straight away but this time I thought and say well…depending! What do you want to say?

So I thought I would put it out there” either and its multiple Spanish meanings” as I think it might be something Spanish students face at some point when speaking Spanish, as “either” is not an uncommon word.


1-either meaning a choice, either this or that in Spanish is “o esto o eso”

Imagine your niece asks you for ice cream and candy, you probably would say yes, because you’re the cool uncle/aunt, not their mum…jaja just kidding, it is likely you would say

No, either you have ice cream or candy-no, o tienes helado o caramelo.

2-either when adding and meaning both, in Spanish is ambos.

Imagine you come to my house and you are annoyed because there were road works in both side of the road, you could complain saying:

What a nightmare! There were road works in either side of the road-¡qué pesadilla! Había obras en ambos lados de la carretera,

If you think about it, it actually makes sense as in English you can say both instead of either in this case and both in Spanish is ambos.

3-either when you don’t have a preference in Spanish would be cualquiera.

Imagine I offer you a hot drink and I ask

What do you want, coffee or tea?- ¿qué quieres café o té?

And you don’t have a particular preference, you like both equally and you just want a hot drink you will answer

Eithercualquiera, and that means that you leave the choice to me 🙂

4-either when agrreeing with a negative sentence is tampoco.

If we are having a conversation and I say

I haven’t seen Antonio Bandera’s last movie-no he visto la última película de Antonio Banderas

And you are the same, so you haven’t watch it, you will be agreeing with my statement that is negative, right?

Then you could say

I haven’t watched either- Yo tampoco la he visto

And that’s all, the English word either and its multiple meanings in Spanish, as I say all the time-because it’s true- la practica hace la perfección-practice makes perfect so now you have read this blog, leave a comment with a sentence using one of the different uses of “either” in Spanish .

I hope you enjoy the English word either and its multiples uses in Spanish and learnt something new, if you like my content and want to support me work I will appreciate if you could give a minute to the thought of supporting me by the price of a cup of coffee here.

Also if you are more of a visual person you can find this content on my youtube cahnnel here.

¡Ten un buen resto del día!-Have a great rest of the day!

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