Using 'Acabar' with Different Prepositions in Spanish


When learning Spanish, mastering verbs and their prepositions is essential for effective communication. One versatile verb that can take on various meanings with different prepositions is "acabar." In this post, we'll explore how to use "acabar" with different prepositions to convey different shades of meaning in your Spanish conversations.

1. Acabar de (To Have Just):

  • When "acabar" is combined with "de," it is used to express that an action has just been completed or happened recently.

Examples of "acabar de" in use:

  1. Acabo de comer (I have just eaten).
  2. Ellos acaban de llegar (They have just arrived).

2. Acabar por (To End Up Doing):

  • "Acabar por" is used to express that something was unexpected or happened as a result of certain circumstances.

Examples of "acabar por" in use:

  1. Acabé por comprarlo (I ended up buying it).
  2. No tenía planes, así que acabé por quedarme en casa (I didn't have plans, so I ended up staying home).

3. Acabar con (To Finish or Destroy):

  • When combined with "con," "acabar" is used to express finishing something or destroying it completely.

Examples of "acabar con" in use:

  1. Acabé con el libro en un día (I finished the book in one day).
  2. El incendio acabó con la casa (The fire destroyed the house).

4. Acabar en (To End in):

  • "Acabar en" is used to express that something results in a particular outcome or destination.

Examples of "acabar en" in use:

  1. La discusión acabó en lágrimas (The argument ended in tears).
  2. Su viaje acabó en Nueva York (Their trip ended in New York).

5. Acabar sin (To Run Out Of):

  • When combined with "sin," "acabar" expresses that something has run out or is depleted.

Examples of "acabar sin" in use:

  1. Acabamos sin dinero (We ran out of money).
  2. Ella acabó sin paciencia (She ran out of patience).

Understanding how "acabar" combines with different prepositions allows you to convey various nuances in your Spanish conversations. Practice using these combinations to become a more versatile and fluent Spanish speaker. 

¡No te preocupes si no lo dominas de inmediato! (Don't worry if you don't master it right away!) Like any language skill, practice makes perfect, and you'll gradually become more comfortable with these expressions.