Family in Portuguese

example of vocabulary for family in portuguese: a família

Whats up guys! In our Dica today, we are going to talk about the family in Portuguese. Do you know how to say mother, father, brother, sister or daughter in Portuguese? I am sure by the end of this class you will know even what does it mean tia in Portuguese!

Family Members in Portuguese

Now, let’s check out a list with the vocabulary for family members in Portuguese: from the basic mother, father, sister and brother; until the specific tia in Portuguese!

Mulher / EsposaWoman / Wife
Marido / EsposoHusband
IrmãosBrothers and Sisters / Brothers / Siblings 
PrimaCousin (female)
PrimoCousin (male)
AmigaFriend (female)
AmigoFriend (male)
Namorado Boyfriend
Sogra Mother-in-law
Sogro Father-in-law

Example about Family in Portuguese

Meu nome é José e tenho 28 anos. Moro com minha família em São Paulo. Agora vou falar sobre os membros da minha família em Português. Minha esposa se chama Juliana, e temos dois filhos, Eduarda e Pedro. Meu pai se chama João e minha mãe se chama Margarida. Os dois moram no Rio de Janeiro e estão casados há 40 anos. Tenho dois irmãos, Augusto e Carlos que também moram no Rio com as famílias deles. Meu avô, senhor Alfredo e minha avó, dona Augusta, moram em Minas Gerais e são casados há 60 anos. Eles são muito felizes. Durante as férias, sempre viajamos para o nosso sítio, onde meus filhos podem brincar com os primos deles. Somos uma família grande e muito feliz.

Translation of the Example

My name is José and I am 28 years old. I’m going to talk about my family members in Portuguese. I live with my family in São Paulo. My wife´s name is Juliana, and we have two kids, Eduarda e Pedro. My father´s name is João and my mother´s name is Margarida. Both of them live in Rio de Janeiro and they have been married for 40 years. I have two brothers, Augusto and Carlos, which live in Rio with their families too. My grandfather, Mr. Alfredo, and my grandmother, Ms. Augusta, live in minas Gerais and they have been married for 60 years. They are very happy. During vacations, we always travel to our house in the country side, where my kids can play with their cousins. We are a big and happy family.

There are different ways to talk about the family in Portuguese. Take a look at another example:

Example about Family Members

Meu nome é Renato, tenho 21 anos e sou estudante de História. Sou do Rio de Janeiro, mas moro em São Paulo porque minha universidade fica aqui. Agora vou te contar sobre a minha família em Português.
Sou de uma família muito pequena: Paulo, meu pai, tem 49 anos e Margarete, minha mãe, tem 46. Susana, minha irmã é mais velha que eu, ela tem 25 anos e estuda nos Estados Unidos, meu irmão se chama Pedro e mora no Canadá porque está estudando Administração lá. Também tenho um avô, Ismael, ele tem 71 anos e minha avó, Dalva, tem 70. Também temos um cachorro que faz parte de nossa família, o nome dele é Zeus. Além disso, eu tenho um grande amigo estrangeiro que fez o CELPE-Bras e é fluente em Português.

Translation of the Example

My name is Renato, I am 21 years old and I study History. I am from Rio de Janeiro, but I live in São Paulo because my university is here. Now I’m going to tell you about my family in Portuguese.
I am from a small family. Paulo, my father, is 49 years old, and Margarete, my mother, is 46. Susana, my older sister, is 25 years old and she studies in the USA. My brother is Pedro and he lives in Canada because he is studying Business there. I also have my grandfather, Ismael, who is 71 years old, and my grandmother, Dalva, who is 70. We also have a dog that is part of our family; its name is Zeus. Besides that, I have a great foreign friend who did the CELPE-Bras exam and is fluent in Portuguese.

Brother in Portuguese?

Brazilians use slangs that are very important for you to keep in mind: brother, in English itself, and irmão. They are slangs used to address a friend or stranger in a friendly manner. Interestingly, when used as slang, there is no gender variation to those words. So don’t be surprised if a Brazilian friend calls you irmão or brother in the middle of a conversation in Portuguese! Let’s check some examples:

  • João é meu melhor amigo, ele é meu irmão.
  • João is my best friend, he is my brother.
  • Brother, minha namorada é muito bonita!
  • Brother, my girlfriend is very pretty!

However, there is a variation of irmão, very used in Rio de Janeiro, that is mermão. This is a term that is the combination between meu + irmão. It’s not often used as a friendly treatment, but rather as an exclamation emphasis. Just like some other ones we use in Portuguese, such as: Uau, Nossa!, Caramba. Let’s check out some examples to understand it:

  • Mermão! A prova de matemática estava impossível!
  • Mermão! The math test was impossible!
  • A melhor escola para aprender português é a Rio & Learn, mermão!
  • The best school to learn Portuguese is Rio & Learn, mermão!

Why is everybody called tia?

Yes, tia in Portuguese is originally used for the sister of your parents. However, you already know that in Brazil we are very affectionate even with strangers, right? That is why you will often see children and teenagers calling older women tia and older men tio, even when they are not related. This is not considered disrespectful, but rather the opposite: it’s expected that your children’s friends refer to you as tia/tio, for example.

Culturally, it’s also considered a rite of passage: in school, kids can call their teachers tia/tio until they reach the second part of the Fundamental School (around of age 12). After that, children are introduced to the fact people often have titles, just as the teachers. But it’s important to notice that for their friend’s parents or other older people, these kids and teenagers will continue using tia/tio.

It’s also a rite of passage into adulthood: when kids get confident into calling you tia/tio, it means you are for sure looking old! :p

Here in Brazil, pets are treated as a family member! Now we have just learned about mother, father, sister, brother and more family members in Portuguese.  What other family members do you know? Check out our Instagram to get to know more about us from Rio & Learn!

See you!

Click in the links below to see more related Dicas
Greetings and Farewells in Portuguese
Informal greetings in Portuguese
Numbers from 1 to 10 in Portuguese
Possessive pronouns in Portuguese

This post is also available in: English Português (Portuguese) Español (Spanish)

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Kanso M
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Llevo solo unas semanas estudiando en línea con Rio & Learn y puedo decir que mi portugués ya ha mejorado notablemente! Espero poder visitar la escuela pronto para realizar una inmersión completa y conocer a todos los profesores que son geniales. Muchas gracias Rio & Learn!
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Mathieu Vandemaele (MathieuV)
Rio & Learn is a one stop shop for learning Portuguese while enjoying the amazing Carioca lifestyle. The teachers and the staffs are very accommodating and they always encourage you to speak and immerse in the language. The immersion classes would take you on amazing journeys to local historic spots of the city while keeping you extra fit. Highly recommend!!!
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