Stem-Changers

Present Indicative Tense 

The most common set of irregular verbs in present tense are the stem changers, or boot verbs. All of these verbs will have a small change in the last syllable of the stem. There are four types of stem changers.

There are e to ie verbs like recomendar, e to i verbs like pedir, o to ue verbs like recordar, amd u to ue verbs like jugar.

The reason that these are sometimesreferred to as boot verbs is that if you were to draw a line around the stems that change, it would look like a boot. That is, the yoform,  form, él, ella, usted form, and ellos, ellas, ustedes form all get a stem change, whereas nosotros and vosotros do not. Look at the table below.

 

e to ie verbs like recomendar 

Singular Plural
Yo
recomiendo
Nosotros
recomendamos
recomiendas
Vosotros
recomendais
El
Ella
Usted

recomienda
Ellos
Ellas
Ustedes

recomiendan

 

e to i verbs like pedir

Singular Plural
Yo
pido
Nosotros
pedimos
pides
Vosotros
pedís
El
Ella
Usted

pide
Ellos
Ellas
Ustedes

piden

 

o to ue verbs like dormir

Singular Plural
Yo
duermo
Nosotros
dormimos
duermes
Vosotros
dormís
El
Ella
Usted

duerme
Ellos
Ellas
Ustedes

duermen

 

u to ue verbs like jugar

Singular Plural
Yo
juego
Nosotros
jugamos
juegas
Vosotros
jugáis
El
Ella
Usted

juega
Ellos
Ellas
Ustedes

juegan

 

Here are a few more example of stem changing verbs:

 

e to ie e to i o to ue
acertar – to guess, get right
encender – to light
advertir – to advise, warn
entender – to understand
cerrar – to close, shut
comenzar – to begin
hervir – to boil
confesar – to confess
mentir – to lie
consentir – to consent
negar – to deny
convertir – to convert
pensar (en) – to think about
defender – to defend
perder – to lose
empezar – to begin
preferir – to prefer
impedir – to impede
colegir – to deduce
competir – to compete
medir – to measure
conseguir – to get, obtain
pedir – to ask for, to order
corregir – to correct
perseguir – to pursue, to persecute
reír – to laugh
despedir – to dismiss, fire
repetir – to repeat
seguir – to follow, continue
freír – to fry
servir – to serve
gemir – to groan, moan
sonreír – to smile
almorzar – to eat lunch
morir – to die
aprobar – to approve
mostrar – to show
contar – to count, to tell
probar – to prove, test, sample, taste
costar – to cost
recordar – to remember
devolver – to return (an object)
volver – to return (from someplace)
rogar – to beg, pray
dormir – to sleep
encontrar – to find
soñar (con) – to dream (about)
morder – to bite
volar – to fly

 

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