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Of Course!

Words and Phrases Used to Indicate Obviousness


Volcano Arenal

Claro que iré a Costa Rica a ver a Cristiano. (Of course I'll go to Costa Rica to see Cristiano.)

Photo by Arden; licensed via Creative Commons.

If you want to indicate that something is obvious — just as you would do in English with the phrase "of course" — here are some words and phrases, some of them from the lesson on adverbs of affirmation, that you can use. Of course, when translating such sentences to English, you aren't limited to the phrase "of course" or those used here; depending on the tone of the conversation, you can also use words such as "obviously" and "certainly."

Claro: For more about this word, see the lesson on claro. A more literal translation is "clearly," although "of course" often works, depending on the context:

  • Claro que iré a Costa Rica a ver a Cristiano. Of course I'll go to Costa Rica to see Cristiano.
  • Sí, sí, claro, estoy muy contenta. Yes, yes, of course, I'm very happy.
  • ¡Claro que sí! Of course! ¡Claro que no! Of course not!
  • ¡Claro que fue gol! Of course it was a goal!

As is the case with other idioms, the phrase desde luego doesn't make much sense if you try translating it word for word ("since later"). But in some areas it is a popular way to say "of course":

  • ¡Desde luego! Of course! ¡Desde luego que no! Of course not!
  • Desde luego que habría un nuevo plan. Of course there'd be a brand-new plan.
  • Desde luego que vamos hacerlo lo más rápido posible. Of course we're going to do it as quickly as possible.
  • Jimmy Page es un gran guitarrista, desde luego. Jimmy Page is a great guitarist, of course.

Por supuesto is also very common:

  • ¡Por supuesto! Of course! ¡Por supuesto que no! Of course not!
  • Por supuesto creo que el estado debe ayudarnos. Of course I believe the state should help us.
  • Estoy muy satisfecho, por supuesto. I'm quite satisfied, of course.

Be aware that sometimes "por supuesto" can be part of a longer phrase to indicate that something is supposed rather than proven, as supuesto is the past participle of suponer, which often means "to suppose": Detuvieron al hijo del actor por supuesto abuso. They arrested the actor's son for alleged abuse.

The phrase "es un hecho que" can be used to indicate that something is a given: Es un hecho que los senadores también aprobarán el programa. Of course (or it's a given that) the senators will also approve the program.

Other possibilities include the adverbs obviamente (obviously) and ciertamente (certainly), although of course the choice of translation depends on the context:

  • Obviamente la pregunta está formulada de esa manera para confundir a la gente. Of course the question is worded that way to confuse people.
  • Ciertamente no quiero ser parte de ello. Of course, I don't want to be part of that.

Note: As is the case with many lessons on this site, sample sentences are adapted from a variety of sources, generally ones written by native Spanish speakers. Among the sources consulted for this lesson were: Alt1040.com, LNE.es, Nuevo Diario, Last.fm, Diario Presente, Solucioneseng.org, Rankia.com, Foro Jackson and Terra.com.

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