The Difference Between JOGAR and BRINCAR

In this post, you will learn the difference between the verbs "jogar" and brincar" - they both mean "to play", but they are used in different contexts

Let's start with the verb jogar

The verb jogar means to play, as in to take part in a game, where the main objective is to win. For example:

jogar futebol / to play football

Você gosta de jogar futebol? / Do you like playing football?

jogar xadrez / to play chess

Vamos jogar xadrez? / Shall we play chess?

jogar videogame to play videogames

Ontem joguei videogame o dia inteiro. / Yesterday, I played videogames all day.

The verb jogar means to throw 

Vou jogar essa bola pra você! / I'm going to throw this ball to you!

and  to throw away

Vou jogar fora essa guitarra! / I'm going to throw away this guitar!

Let's see two very common expressions with the verb jogar:

jogar conversa fora / to chat; to make small talk

Às vezes, eu gosto de jogar conversa fora. Sometimes I like making small talk.

jogar tudo pro alto / jogar tudo pra cima / to drop everything; to stop doing something

Ontem, quase joguei tudo pro alto! / Yesterday, I almost dropped everything!

Now, let's start move onto the verb  brincar

The verb brincar can also be translated as to play, but it's used in relation to toys and children's play For example:

brincar de casinha / to play doll

Elas estão brincando de casinha. / They are playing house.

brincar de carrinho / to play (with) toy cars

Eu gostava de brincar de carrinho. / I used to like playing (with) toy cars

brincar de esconde-esconde / to play hide-and-seek

Vamos brincar de esconde-esconde! / Let's play hide-and-seek.

Another meaning of the verb brincar is to joketo jest:

A very common expression with the verb brincar is

brincar com fogo / to play with fire

Quem brinca com fogo acaba se queimando. / If you play with fire, you get  burned.

There is another verb that can also be translated as to play, which is tocar, when referring to a musical instrument.

tocar piano / to play the piano

Eu toco piano todos os dias. / I play the piano every day.


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Categories: Verbs, Vocabulary, How to Say Anything in Brazilian Portuguese