The use of the word dar (to give)



Introduction: The verb "dar" means "to give" but it is also used in hundreds of expressions. The first table contains a selection of the most frequently used ones and then later we give some examples of less common ones.

Click here to see all the conjugations of the verb dar


dar a alguien las gracias por algo
¿Le diste las gracias?

to thank someone for something
Did you thank him? Did you say thank you?

dar a alguien la bienvenida to welcome someone
No me da la gana I don't want to. / I don't feel like it.
dar un paseo
¿quieres dar un paseo?
to go for a walk
Would you like to go for a walk
dar una vuelta en coche
dar una vuelta a la manzana
to go for a drive
to go round the block
Note: "Dar una vuelta" could also mean to go for a spin.
Le va a dar un ataque cuando lo vea he'll have a fit when he sees it /
he'll go mad when he sees it
dar patadas a algo / alguien to kick something / someone
dar asco
Me da asco
Le dan asco las cebollas.
to sicken / revolt
It revolts me.
He can't stand onions.
dar clases: Note: If someone says "doy clases de baile" It is not clear if they are the student or the teacher. to give classes (teacher)
to have classes (student)
dar de comer a
había que darle de comer al águila con la mano
to feed:
the eagle had to be fed by hand
dar en el blanco
to hit the target - to get a bullseye
dar la vuelta al mundo to go round the world
dar un consejo a alguien to give someone some advice
dar ánimo(s) a alguien

to encourage someone - to urge someone on
darse cuenta de algo
No me di cuenta.
to realise something
I didn't realise.
dar una entrada para algo to put down a deposit on something
dar un examen to take an exam
dar fe de algo to testify to something.
Note: At the end of legal documents it often says "Doy fe" before the signature.
dar la lata
siempre está dando la lata

to be a nuisance / to bother someone
he is always being a nuisance.
dar voces to shout / scream
dar a luz to give birth
dar cosa

Me da cosa preguntarle de nuevo
to feel uncomfortable / awkward about something
I feel awkward about asking him again
en un momento dado at a given moment / time
dado que given that / since
dado por ...
dado por muerto
presumed to be ....
presumed to be dead
me da hambre:
See note: After "me da ..." many expressions are possible: eg: me da envidia = It make me envious
It makes me feel hungry:
Note that there are many expressions with "me da ...." and they normally mean that something makes you feel something. So you could say "me da hambre" if you are looking a book of delicious recipes for example.
dar pena / lástima
Me da pena ver a esas personas
A mí los que me dan pena son los niños
to make sad / to upset / to feel sorry
It upsets me to see those people
It's the children I feel sorry for
dar guerra
Estos niños me dan mucha guerra
to cause trouble / to hassle
These children give me a lot of hassle
me da lo mismo
me da igual
it's all the same to me
it's the same to me or I couldn't care less:
Note: "No me importa" is very similar.
tuve que darle la razón I had to admit he was right
dar saltos de alegría to jump for joy
dar señas / señales de to show signs of
dar buena / mala suerte to bring good / bad luck

dar marcha atrás (sobre algo)
el gobierno dio marcha atrás
to go back (on something)
the government made a "U" turn

Nos van a dar las uvas
(dar las uvas a alguien)

We'll be here all day / night
We'll be here until the cows come home

¡Esa no da ni la hora!
No nos da ni la hora

You won't get anything out of her
He won't even given us the time of day

dar oídos a algo
No podía dar crédito a mis oídos
to take notice of something
I couldn't believe my ears
dar lidia
¡Qué lidia dan estos niños!
to be a handful/a struggle
These children are a real handful.
dar la hora / las cinco to strike the hour / five o'clock
dar una cabezada to have a nap

dar un calambre en
Me ha dado un calambre en el pie

to get cramp in
I've got cramp in my foot
dar en el clavo to hit the nail on the head
dar refugio a alguien to take someone in
dar por sentado
dar algo por supuesto
to take for granted
to take something for granted
dar leña a alguien
Le dieron mucha leña en el debate
to give someone a lot of stick
He took a lot of stick in the debate
darle caña a alguien
to have a go at someone / to attack
¡dale caña! give it some stick. Note: If you want someone to turn the sound up loud when listening to music or maybe go faster if you are driving you might say: ¡dale caña! (give it some welly BR.)
dar refugio a alguien to take someone in
dar (hasta) las entrañas to give one's all
dar una pataleta
Le dio una pataleta
to throw a tantrum / to have a fit
She threw a tantrum
deja de dar el peñazo stop hassling me
dar algo por perdido to give something up as lost
dar el visto bueno a algo to approve something
¡Como se entere su madre le va a dar un infarto! If his mother finds out, she'll go mad!
darse un resbalón to slip (lit), to put one's foot in it,
dar vía libre a algo to give something the go-head
to give something the green light
dar un volantazo to swerve: Note: "volante" is the steering wheel.
dar una voltereta to do a somersault
dar un vuelco
La situación puede dar un vuelco en cualquier momento
to change drastically
The situation could change drastically at any time
dar en la tecla to hit the nail on the head
dar un telefonazo a alguien to give someone a buzz / a call (coll.)
dar un taconazo to click one's heels

dar los últimos coletazos
Mi relación con mi novia está dando los últimos coletazos

to be on its last legs
My relationship with my girlfriend is on its last legs.
dar palos de ciego

Estaban dando palos de ciego, tratando de encontrar una solución
to lash out blindly (in a fight)
to grope around (in the dark)
They were groping around for a solution.
darse por aludido
Lo dije varias veces pero no se dio por aludido
No te des por aludido, no hablabamos de tí
to take the hint
We told him several times but he didn't take the hint.
Don't take it personally, we weren't talking about you.
dar una paliza a alguien to beat someone up
dar una guantada a alguien to slap someone
dar una leche
dar una leche a alguien
to crash (car, etc.)
to thump someone