Confusing Terms – Differences/2 for 1

I’m going to combine a Differences post with a 2 for 1 post (both under the Portuguese category). While understanding the difference between the Portuguese words might be no sweat for Brazilians, I’ve been forced to throw them in the ‘confusing words’ pile (where the ‘camisa vs camiseta‘  and ‘troco vs trocado‘ pairs sometimes reside) for far too long. It’s time to stop confusing the terms (at least personally).

Series vs Sitcom

Série (f) – TV series

Seriado (m) – TV series/Sitcom/Serial

As in the US, a sitcom has no defined ending. An easy-ish way to remember the difference is ‘série’ looks like ‘series’ and ‘seriado’ looks like ‘serial’ (even though the last term isn’t used that much anymore).

Shirt vs T-shirt

Camisa (f) – Shirt/Dress shirt (buttons)

Camiseta (f) – T-shirt/Undershirt (casual)

I swore I already wrote about the difference but upon double-checking, I guess not. To not confuse these two, try to remember that t-shirt is a longer word than shirt, just as camiseta is longer than camisa. Also, one should note that jersey (used for sports) can be defined with either word or even jérsei, but it’s more likely you’ll see camisa used for jersey.

Of course, if you look at the comments, you’ll start to understand why some of these terms are confusing…

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5 thoughts on “Confusing Terms – Differences/2 for 1

  1. just to confuse a little bit more.

    Actually, “camiseta” in spoken Portuguese is usually for sleeveless T-shirts rather than “bottom or no bottom”.

    Generally to say “shirt” we use “camisa social”, and the T-shirt “camisa”. Well, at least this is true for part of Minas, and Rio. lol

  2. Yes, Jonas is right. You definition is accepted, but in real life people just say “camisa” for T-shirt and “camisa social” for shirt. Sometimes people people use “camisa” for both. Example: You are at a party and somebody spills wine at you “shirt”. Nobody will say “Aquele cara entornou vinho na minha camisa social”, people will just say “Aquele cara entornou vinho na minha camisa”. “Camisa social” is only used when you want to make clear which type you are talking about. “Tá vendo aquele cara com uma camisa social verde?. Foi meu professor na escola”

    About série and seriado, honestly, they are the same thing to me. You can call both “Lost” and “Friends” or “CSI”, séries or seriados.

  3. hum yeah I would say that série and seriado has the same meaning also, but there is a slight difference between them.
    I think some people would say that “série” is something produced in Brazil (as miniséries produced by Globo and so on), and “seriado” is mostly used when is something produced abroad such as Friends, True Blood, and so on…

  4. I’ve heard ‘série’ being used for all of those, especially on cable channels. “Conheça as novas séries do Sony Entertainment”.

  5. Just to add more info. I remembered that seriado was a term used in the 80s and early 90s. When the satellite tv channels made their name in mid 90s, they started using the term “series”. I still refer to them as ‘seriado’ though.

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