Wish in Portuguese

example of usage for wish in portuguese: Desejamos que vocês venham se divertir com a gente!

Hey guys! I have a few questions for you today! Have you ever wished upon a star? To get that great promotion at work? Wished for more time with someone? Or even wished to learn Portuguese super fast? Everyone wishes for something and hopes that it will eventually come true. In today’s Dica we will learn how to express a wish in Portuguese. We will also check out the difference between the verbs of wish and desire in Portuguese, and how to use them. Finally, we will look at a case of an informal expression using wish in Portuguese.

Verb and Substantive for Wish in Portuguese

First, let’s begin by understanding how this verb works and which is its correspondent substantive. Verb wish in portuguese is “desejar”. The corresponding noun is “desejo”. Take a look at how to pronouce it correctly:


Expressions for Wish

Besides the verb desejar, we can also use the expressions tomara and oxalá to express desire. Both of them have the same meaning: to express what you want to someone. Take a look at some examples below:

Tomara que você consiga o emprego!
I hope you get the job!

Oxalá você chegue bem em casa.
I hope you get home well.

I Wish as an Expression

In Portuguese we have the informal expression quem dera, which you can use when you really wish for something, or to be in someone else place. Let’s look at some examples with I wish in Portuguese:

Quem dera minha mãe deixar eu sair.
I wish my mother would let me go out.

Quem dera eu fosse rico como ele, compraria uma mansão!
I wish I was as rich as him, I would buy a mansion!

Different Verbs for Wish in Portuguese

express what you wish in portuguese. we use the expression "desejo que" with present of subjunctive to express what we want to happen. structure: eu + desejo que + pronome + presente do subjuntivo + complemento. Example: eu desejo que você compre o presente. We can also use the expression "espero que" with the same function. Structure: eu + espero que + pronome + presente do subjuntivo + complemento. Example: Eu espero que você estude para a prova.

But how can we use wish in Portuguese? There are many different verbs we can use and they will be in the present subjunctive and imperfect past subjunctive forms.

Express what you wish in Portuguese. We use the imperfect subjunctive added with verbs desejar and esperar in the past to express desire: Structure: verbo no passado + pretérito imperfeito do subjuntivo. Examples: Eu esperava que ela ficasse até mais tarde. Ela desejava que eu estivesse aqui. Nós desejávamos que você fosse mais paciente. Vocês queriam que eu andasse mais rápido.

Let’s look at at some examples and where we can use them:

Esperar – Eu espero que você se divirta no Rio de Janeiro.
Expect/Hope – I hope you enjoy yourself in Rio de Janeiro.

Desejar – Nós desejamos que vocês tenham um ótimo fim de semana.
Wish – We wish you a great weekend.

Pedir – Ele pediu que eu comprasse a carne pro churrasco.
Ask – He asked me to buy meat for the barbecue.

Preferir – Ela prefere que você fique em casa e descanse.
Prefer – She would prefer you to stay home and rest.

Querer – Você quer que eu ao supermercado?
Want – You want me to go to the supermarket?

Gostar – Eu gostaria que você falasse mais baixo.
Like – I would like you to speak more quietly.

Wish vs Desire

portuguese students getting to know a samba school in rio de janeiro. example of usage for wish in portuguese.

In English, the verb wish is used to express something that you hope happens, while desire suggests you will do something in order for it to come true.

The verb wish in Portuguese can be expressed with the help of many other verbs, as seen in the examples above: pedir, preferir, querer and gostar, but the closest in meaning would be esperar, to hope for: Eu espero ser feliz (I wish to be happy).

With the verb desire in Portuguese, the closest translation would be desejar. If you say eu desejo (I desire), it means a stronger feeling than just a wish. An example would be: Eu desejo ser rico (I desire to be rich).
But pay attention! You can also use the word desejo as a noun in Portuguese: Meu maior desejo é ser feliz! (My greatest wish is to be happy!)

Wish in Portuguese for Events

To express congratulations in Portuguese, you can use the word “desejar” (to wish) followed by the specific occasion. With regard to holidays, you can use the same structure, adapting the wish according to the specific celebration. On all these occasions, expressing your wishes lovingly and sincerely will convey your best wishes to the recipient. So, check out some examples for different holidays in Portuguese:

Eu te desejo um feliz aniversário!
I wish you a happy birthday!

Nós desejamos que você tenha um feliz ano novo!
We wish you have a happy new year!

Te desejo um feliz natal e um próspero ano novo!
I wish you a merry Christmas and a flourishing new year!

Elas desejam que você tenha um bom feriado!
They wish you have a great holiday!

E-mail with Verbs and Expressions of Desire

Let’s see how to use the verbs and expressions we have just learned, check out the e-mail below:

Meu caro amigo, João,

Espero que esteja bem ao receber este e-mail.

Quero que saiba que estou gostando muito da cidade maravilhosa e estou fazendo muitos amigos. Estou estudando na Rio & Learn, uma escola de Português muito legal com professores muito simpáticos que pedem que nós falemos Português durante todo o dia. Eles querem que nós participemos de todas as Atividades RioLIVE! da escola e falemos bastante em Português. É proibido falar em outras línguas e isso deixa tudo mais interessante. Sempre peço que eles me ajudem quando tenho dificuldades e eles sempre me ajudam.
Tomara que você chegue logo e comece a estudar aqui comigo. Oxalá possamos ficar no mesmo grupo.
Gostaria que praticássemos juntos fora da escola também. Assim vamos aprender mais rápido!

Abraços do seu amigo,



My dear friend João, 

I hope this email finds you well. 

I want you to know that I am truly enjoying the cidade maravilhosa and am making many friends. I am studying at Rio & Learn, a very cool Portuguese school with friendly teachers who ask us to speak Portuguese the entire day. They want us to participate in all RioLIVE! activities with the school, and that we speak lots of Portuguese. It is forbidden to speak any other language, which makes everything a lot more interesting. I always ask for them to help me when I have any difficulty, and they always do.
I hope you arrive soon and start studying here with me. Hopefully we can be in the same group.
I would like us to practice together outside of the school too. That way we can learn faster!

Hugs from your friend,

Now that you know some verbs of desire and wish in Portuguese, and some expressions too, we hope that you are able to practice a lot!

We will see you soon with another Dica do Dia.
Kisses from Rio & Learn!

Click on the links below to see more related Dicas
Present Subjunctive in Portuguese
Doubt in Portuguese
Conjunctions of the Subjunctive in Portuguese
Congratulations in Portuguese

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

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