WordReference is a site that I’ve taken for granted so much that I never even thought to write about it until now. Whenever I have a question about Portuguese that no one else seems able to answer, I go here.
For example, I have long wondered about the difference between three words that all seem to mean “beautiful” in Portuguese: bonito, lindo, belo. I have asked people about this before but have never gotten a satisfactory answer. I finally found this thread on WordReference, where a several native speakers give excellent answers:
- bonito and lindo both mean beautiful, but something that is lindo is even more beautiful than something that is bonito.
- belo is like bonito, but it has a more poetic/literary ring to it that can sound ridiculous or forced in certain contexts, though it’s possible to use that to ironic effect
- belo usually comes before the noun while bonito and lindo come after.
- belo can also be used in certain expressions where it means “satisfactory” or “sufficient”: um belo exemplo, uma bela quantia
WordReference is an excellent site to have in your toolkit when you’re working on a translation, or when you need expert advice from a native speaker.