GCSE Spanish verbs list - the top 25

Below you will find the top 25 Spanish verbs.

This is the definitive GCSE Spanish verbs list.

In each sentence there is one verb - so if you are familiar with these verbs, it will improve your chances in the actual GCSE exam.

Having said that, all students of Spanish will benefit from knowing these verbs well. 

GCSE Spanish verbs list - the top 25

Here is the definitive list:

1. SER - to be

2. HABER - to have

3 ESTAR - to be

4. TENER - to have

5. HACER - to do/ make

6. PODER - to "can" / to be able

7. DECIR - to say / tell

8. IR - to go

9. VER - to see

10. DAR - to give 

11. SABER - to know ( a fact)

12. QUERER - to want / to love

13. LLEGAR - to arrive

14. PASAR - to pass / to spend

15. DEBER - to "must" / to have to / to owe

16. PONER - to put

17. PARECER - to seem

18. QUEDAR - to stay / to remain

19. CREER - to believe

20. HABLAR - to speak

21. LLEVAR - to carry / to wear

22. DEJAR - to leave

23. SEGUIR - to follow

24. ENCONTRAR - to find

25. LLAMAR - to call

You will find below the verbs set out in the first person (YO form), with the English translation.

Comments have been added which will be useful to the Spanish GCSE student.

The 25 top verbs in Spanish - one of the keys to success in #GCSE SPANISH. Click here for the definitive guide.

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GCSE Spanish verbs list - the top 25

1. Ser - to be

"Ser" is the most frequently used Spanish verb.

It is therefore an absolute must for your Spanish GCSE / Spanish IGCSE studies.

Indeed, "Ser" is a key verb for any Spanish student.

Firstly, it is irregular.

Here are the key parts of the verb.

ser first person in present, future, imperfect perfect and preterite

The irregular parts have been highlighted.

Here are some examples of the use of the verb, which will be useful in both the speaking and writing part of the GCSE exam.

Present tense examples

Soy inglés / soy inglesa

Soy bastante alto / soy bastante alta

Warning!

Native English speakers may be tempted to translate "I am 15 /16 years old" by using "soy". 

This is incorrect!

To say, I am 15/ 16 years old, you say:

"Tengo 15 / 16 años".

Imperfect tense example

To say when I was young, you use the imperfect tense.

"Cuando era joven"

Preterite tense - comment

"Fui" can mean "I was" but it also means "I went".  

This can be confusing.

To avoid possible confusion, you could learn "block" phrases.

Here is an example:

"Fui a España en avión." (I went to Spain by plane)

Fui un(a) estudiante de ABC instituto primario (I was a student of ABC primary school)

2. Haber - to have

Haber is the second most frequent word in the Spanish language.

Haber means "to have".

It is irregular - see the table below. 

Haber also has important grammatical role.

What is the difference between Haber and Tener?

English speaking Spanish students can be confused as to when to use "haber" and when to use "tener", since they both mean "to have" in English.

Put simply -

1. Tener means to have in a physical sense

e.g. tengo un lápiz en mi mano.

2. Haber means to have in a grammatical sense

he sido - I have been

había sido - I had been

habría sido - I would have been

haber first person in present, future, imperfect perfect and preterite

3. Estar - to be

estar first person tener first person in present, future, imperfect perfect and preterite

Estar - to be

Estar is the third most common word in the Spanish language.

This two syllable verb poses students of the language a number of challenges.

Firstly, Estar is irregular in its formation.

Secondly, its meaning is the same as Ser (number 1 in this list) for it also means "to be"....

and because of this, Estar can cause a number of difficulties.

It is always dangerous to simplify, but here goes

Estar is used for:

a) where something is located

Madrid está en España.

b) when something is temporary.

Estoy triste (but I am not sad all the time)

4. Tener- to have

Tense

Spanish - YO

English - I

Present

TENGO

I HAVE

Future

TENDRÉ

I WILL HAVE

Imperfect

​TENÍA

I HAD / USED TO HAVE

Perfect

HE TENIDO

I HAVE HAD

Preterite

TUVE

I HAD

5. Hacer - to do / make

Tense

Spanish - YO

English - I

Present

HAGO

I DO / MAKE

Future

HARÉ

I WILL DO / MAKE

Imperfect

​HACÍA

I DID / MADE

USED TO MAKE / DO

Perfect

HE HECHO

I HAVE DONE / MADE

Preterite

HICE

I DID / MADE

6. Poder - to can / be able

Tense

Spanish - YO

English - I

Present

PUEDO

I CAN / AM ABLE

Future

PODRÉ

I WILL BE ABLE

Imperfect

​PODÍA

I WAS ABLE

Perfect

HE PODIDO

I HAVE BEEN ABLE

Preterite

PUDE

I WAS ABLE

7. Decir - to say / tell

Tense

Spanish - YO

English - I

Present

DIGO

I SAY / TELL

Future

DIRÉ

I WILL SAY / TELL

Imperfect

​DECÍA

I USED TO SAY / TELL

I TOLD / I SAID

Perfect

HE DICHO

I HAVE SAID / TOLD

Preterite

DIJE

I SAID / TOLD

8. Ir - to go

Tense

Spanish - YO

English - I

Present

VOY

I GO

Future

IRÉ

I WILL GO

Imperfect

​IBA

I USED TO GO /

I WENT

Perfect

HE IDO

I HAVE GONE / BEEN

Preterite

FUI

I WENT

9. Ver - to see

Tense

Spanish - YO

English - I

Present

VEO

I SEE

Future

VERÉ

I WILL SEE

Imperfect

VEÍA

I USED TO SEE /

I SAW

Perfect

HE VISTO

I HAVE SEEN

Preterite

VI

I SAW

10. Dar - give

Tense

Spanish - YO

English - I

Present

DOY

I GIVE

Future

DARÉ

I WILL GIVE

Imperfect

DABA

I USED TO GIVE /

I GAVE

Perfect

HE DADO

I HAVE GIVEN

Preterite

DI

I GAVE

11. Saber - t0 know (a fact)

Tense

Spanish - YO

English - I

Present

I KNOW

Future

SABRÉ

I WILL KNOW

Imperfect

SABÍA

I USED TO KNOW /

I KNEW

Perfect

HE SABIDO

I HAVE KNOWN

Preterite

SUPE

I KNEW

12. Querer - to want, to love

Tense

Spanish - YO

English - I

Present

QUIERO

I WANT / I LOVE

Future

QUERRÉ

I WILL WANT / LOVE

Imperfect

QUERÍA

I USED TO WANT

/ LOVE

I WANTED / LOVED

Perfect

HE QUERIDO

I HAVE WANTED / LOVED

Preterite

QUISE

I WANTED / LOVED

13. Llegar - to arrive

Tense

Spanish - YO

English - I

Present

LLEGO

I ARRIVE

Future

LLEGARÉ

I WILL ARRIVE

Imperfect

LLEGABA

I USED TO ARRIVE /

I ARRIVED

Perfect

HE LLEGADO

I HAVE ARRIVED

Preterite

LLEGUÉ

I ARRIVED

14. Pasar - to pass / spend time

Tense

Spanish - YO

English - I

Present

PASO

I PASS / SPEND TIME

Future

PASARÉ

I WILL PASS /

SPEND TIME

Imperfect

PASABA

I USED TO PASS / SPEND TIME

Perfect

HE PASADO

I HAVE PASSED / SPENT TIME

Preterite

PASÉ

I PASSED /

SPENT TIME

15. Deber - to "must", to have to, to owe 

Tense

Spanish - YO

English - I

Present

DEBO

I  must / to have to / owe

Future

DEBERÉ

 WILL HAVE TO / WILL OWE

Imperfect

DEBÍA

I USED TO HAVE TO/ OWE

Perfect

HE DEBIDO

I HAVE HAD TO / OWED

Preterite

DEBÍ

I HAD TO / OWED

16. Poner - to put

Tense

Spanish - YO

English - I

Present

PONGO

I PUT

Future

PONDRÉ

I WILL PUT

Imperfect

PONÍA

I USED TO PUT /

I PUT

Perfect

HE PUESTO

I HAVE PUT

Preterite

PUSE

I PUT

17. Parecer - to seem 

Tense

Spanish - YO

English - I

Present

PAREZCO

I SEEM

Future

PARECERÉ

I WILL SEEM

Imperfect

PARECÍA

I USED TO SEEM /

I SEEMED

Perfect

HE PARECIDO

I HAVE SEEMED

Preterite

PARECÍ

I SEEMED

18. Quedar - to stay , remain

Tense

Spanish - YO

English - I

Present

QUEDO

I STAY / REMAIN

Future

QUEDARÉ

I WILL STAY / REMAIN

Imperfect

QUEDABA​​​​

I USED TO STAY / REMAIN

Perfect

HE QUEDADO

I HAVE STAYED / REMAINED

Preterite

QUEDÉ

I STAYED / REMAINED

19. Creer - to think, believe 

Tense

Spanish - YO

English - I

Present

CREO

I BELIEVE

Future

CREERÉ

I WILL BELIEVE

Imperfect

CREÍA

I USED TO BELIEVE /

I BELIEVED

Perfect

HE CREÍDO 

I HAVE BELIEVED / BELIEVED

Preterite

CREÍ

I BELIEVED

20. Hablar  - to speak, talk 

Tense

Spanish - YO

English - I

Present

HABLO

I SPEAK / TALK

Future

HABLARÉ

I WILL SPEAK / TALK

Imperfect

HABLABA

I USED TO SPEAK / TALK

I SPOKE / I TALKED

Perfect

HE HABLADO

I HAVE SPOKEN / TALKED

Preterite

HABLÉ

I SPOKE

21. Llevar - to take, carry, wEAR

Tense

Spanish - YO

English - I

Present

LLEVO

I TAKE / CARRY / WEAR

Future

LLEVARÉ

I WILL TAKE / CARRY / WEAR

Imperfect

LLEVABA

I USED TO TAKE / CARRY / WEAR /

I TOOK / CARRIED / WORE

Perfect

HE LLEVADO

I HAVE TAKEN / CARRIED / WORN

Preterite

LLEVÉ

I TOOK / CARRIED / WORE

22. DEJAR - TO LEAVE / LET

Tense

Spanish - YO

English - I

Present

DEJO

I LEAVE / LET

Future

DEJARÉ

I WILL LEAVE / LET

Imperfect

DEJABA

I USED TO LEAVE / LET

Perfect

HE DEJADO

I HAVE LEFT / LET

Preterite

DEJÉ

I LEFT / LET

23. Seguir - to follow

Tense

Spanish - YO

English - I

Present

SIGO

I FOLLOW

Future

SEGUIRÉ

I WILL FOLLOW

Imperfect

SEGUÍA

I USED TO FOLLOW /

I FOLLOWED

Perfect

HE SEGUIDO

I HAVE FOLLOWED /

I FOLLOWED

Preterite

SEGUÍ

I FOLLOWED

24. Encontrar - to find 

Tense

Spanish - YO

English - I

Present

ENCUENTRO

I FIND

Future

ENCONTRARÉ

I WILL FIND

Imperfect

ENCONTRABA

I USED TO FIND /

I FOUND

Perfect

HE ENCONTRADO

I HAVE FOUND /

I FOUND

Preterite

ENCONTRÉ

I FOUND

25. Llamar - to call, to name 

Tense

Spanish - YO

English - I

Present

LLAMO

I CALL

Future

LLAMARÉ

I WILL CALL

Imperfect

LLAMABA

I USED TO CALL /

I CALLED

Perfect

HE LLAMADO

I HAVE CALLED / 

I CALLED

Preterite

LLAMÉ

I CALLED

GCSE Spanish verbs list - the top 25
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GCSE Spanish verbs list - the top 25
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GCSE Spanish verbs list - the top 25
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GCSE Spanish verbs list - the top 25. This valuable list is useful for all students of Spanish.
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