Desperate grammar…

One of the subjects that every translator must have aprobadisima is the spelling. For that we turn to pages such as the RAE, the Instituto Cervantes, Fundeubbva, etc.

There are many grammatical questions with which we can bump us translating, for example, the use of the prefix ‘des’ front of the prefix “de”. In Spanish there are about 66,000 words that begin with the prefix ‘des’ that, incidentally, is a prefix of Latin origin meaning: denial, on leave; excess, as in shoes; or out of, anddisplaced.


But sometimes that prefix loses its s, for example, in the words decoder, demodulator, decapitate, slaughter, discolor, stripping, defoliar, DeForest, deform, degrade, demolish and a long etcetera.

When assails us the doubt, if that assails us, it is not enough to consult a dictionary, if you go to the SAR it is possible you will get with the surprise that some words such as decode are supported in both ways, with sand without it. Although a common technique is to adhere to the popularity ratings, the term without s has many more followers, and is that you for the technological terms that come from English or French seems to be more accepted to translate them with the prefix “de”. This is the case of the word “demodulate” and its derivatives. If we consult the SAR we see that “demodulate” does not exist.

In specialized agencies such as the ITU (International Telecommunication Union) exclusively used forms with “-” (demultiplexing, deconstruction, etc.) to translate the equivalent terms in English or French; but it never is, before you go with the original language, check the dictionaries say.