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02 Preterite – Irregulars – Saber

This video lesson covers one of many irregular verbs in the preterite: saber (to know). Remember that we use this verb for:
1. facts
2. information
3. ‘how to.’

Something about saber though is that like a few other verbs, it changes meaning slightly in the preterite. We’ll go over more on this later but it although you might think it translates to ‘knew’, it actually means ‘found out, learned’.

Please note that saber can also mean ‘to taste‘ in Spanish. This is not mentioned in the video, but should be noted by students.
Present:¿Cómo sabe la comida?How does the food taste?
¿Cómo supo la comida?How did the food taste?


Let me know if you have any questions, comments or suggestions about this video.

conjugation chart:

preterite saber copy

cuando – when
de – of, from, about
donde – where
el número de teléfono – phone number
estar – to be [located]
hablar español – to speak Spanish
jugar al básquetbol – to play basketball
la ciudad – city
la historia – history
la Navidad – Christmas
la receta – recipe
los estudiantes – students
mi(s) – my
perfecto / perfecta – perfect
sobre – about, above
un poco – a little [bit]

Related video(s):

  1. Preterite regular -AR verbs
  2. Preterite -AR verbs: -GAR, -CAR, -ZAR
  3. Preterite regular -ER verbs
  4. Preterite regular -IR verbs
  5. Preterite Irregulars hacer
  6. Preterite Irregulars decir
  7. Preterite Irregulars poder
  8. Preterite Irregulars querer
  9. Preterite Irregulars estar
  10. Preterite Irregulars poner
  11. Preterite Irregulars tener
  12. Preterite Irregulars venir
  13. Preterite Irregulars ver & dar
  14. Preterite Irregulars traer, traducir, conducir
  15. Preterite – pedir, servir, traer
  16. Preterite Irregulars song

7 Responses

  1. Señor Jordan,
    A reminder…the verb saber is sometimes used to mean taste as in “Esta comida sabe muy mal”…”This food tastes very bad”. The first time I heard this I thought “How can the food “know” anything? 🙂

  2. Hola!

    I’ve noticed that you used “saber” in a sentence:
    Nosotros sabemos un poco Venezuela.

    I thought that we should use “conocer” to describe a place that we know.

    Gracias i Hasta luego!

    Pablo de Varsavia

  3. Right. But notice the ‘de’. I am not saying I am familiar with Venezuela as in I have been there. I am saying I know about Venezuela. You could also use sobre to mean about in that sentence.

    -Sr. J

  4. Hola!

    thanks a lot for these helpful video, really great effort.
    I would like to ask you about the pronunciation of saber, why did you pronounce it “saver”? I know that “v & b” in Spanish pronounced b, so could you please make it clear for me?

    Muchisimas gracias

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