I’ve been living in Portugal for the last 3 years or so. I genuinely like the country and, as a good citizen, I started to learn the language. From scratch.
While difficult, I’m lucky since Romanian, my native language, is also a Romance language and the grammar is really similar.
But the diminutives, OMG, the diminutives!!!
Portuguese people already speak really fast and it’s difficult to understand the words they speak, but they use SO MANY diminutives that I sometimes just stop making any effort to understand what they are saying.
I recently went with my car to get it serviced and, at some point, the guy asked for my “chavizinho” and I was confused as hell. “Chave” is “key”, so I thought I kinda got it, but I genuinely wasn’t sure that was what he wanted.
I’d love to have a dictionary that has both original word and the diminutive attached. You know, just to be there :)
Here’s a funny video (in Portuguese, with some English explanations) to understand how it happens.
The source of the video: these guys.
P.S.: just to get an idea of how fast Portuguese people speak and how much they “eat” vowels, this is how the word “Portugal” sounds to me when they say it: “prtgal”.