The term you're looking for is "inflected language." Spanish is much more inflected than English.JD wrote:Well, Spanish has finally gotten tough; the past tense is kind of kicking my ass right now. But I think it's also partly a weakness in Duolingo: it seemed like all of a sudden there were just all these random new things to learn, but once I looked up Spanish verb conjugation, I realized there was a pattern. But Duolingo doesn't give you patterns or rules much, just random examples. Once you know there's a pattern, you know that, for example, "bostezar", would go yo bosteze', tu bostezaste, e'l bostezo', etc. Without any rules, you're lost in a sea of "-aste"s and "-ieron"s.
Also, I had a realization about English. Spanish is regular enough that you can often guess what part of speech an unknown word is. English isn't like that, though. If you run across a new word like "glurkle", absent a lot of context you have very little idea what it might be - a verb, "to glurkle"? a noun, "a glurkle"? an adjective, "a glurkle car"?
We do have some inflections, and with some words the part of speech is clear; you can probably guess what part of speech I think "spungly" is, and you can at least narrow "nelter" down to two choices. But between our lack of language and our copious word-borrowing, you're in general right.
(The girlfriend and I discuss this periodically, since Romanian is highly inflected).