Aunque + El Presente vs El Presente de Subjuntivo

Aunque, generally translated as although, even if, or despite of, can be used with the indicative and the subjunctive. Using one or the other will depend on what we want to express.

In this lesson we will study cases of:

Use aunque + El Presente 

To declare something that what we know is happening. It is a fact. The speaker has absolutely no doubt that what he is saying is true. It also implies that the speaker considers this information as new for the listener. He wants to make sure the listener is aware.

Voy a salir aunque llueve mucho.
I am going out despite the rain.

Here the speaker is using the present indicative because he may have looked through the window and checked that it is actually raining. There is no doubt about it. In addition, he is informing the listener about this in case he didn't notice.

Use aunque + El Presente de Subjuntivo 

1. To give some background information which is known by the speaker and the listener. It is a shared information.

Voy a salir aunque llueva mucho.
I am going out although it is raining.

Here the speaker and the listener know already that it is raining, maybe because they’ve just come from outside, or they are looking through the window and they can see the rain.

2. To refer to something that may/may not happen later, in the future.

Voy a salir después aunque llueva mucho.
I am going out later even if it rains.

Here the speaker doesn't know whether it will rain or not later but it may rain, maybe because he can see a grey sky and there is a possibility of rain later.

Aunque París es una ciudad impresionante, prefiero Londres.
Although Paris is an astonishing city, I prefer London.

Aunque me duele la cabeza, voy a seguir trabajando.
Even though I have a headache, I am going to keep on working.

Aunque París sea una ciudad impresionante, prefiero Londres.
Even though Paris is an astonishing city, I prefer London.

Aunque me duela la cabeza, voy a seguir trabajando.
Although I have a headache, I am going to keep on working.

Aunque me supliques no me casaré contigo.
Even if you beg me I won't marry you.

No irás a ese viaje aunque consigas el dinero.
You will not go on that trip even if you get the money.

Bear in mind that sometimes it is difficult to know whether the speaker is using the subjunctive to convey a future idea or a shared information. Have a look again at this example:

Aunque esté nevando, voy a sacar al perro a pasear.

There are two possibilities here:

  1. the speaker is thinking that it may snow later (but despite that, he is taking the dog for a walk)
  2. the speaker and the listener both know that it is snowing at that moment of speaking (but despite that, he is taking the dog for a walk), so it is a background/shared information.

Examples and resources

Presente de Subjuntivo: The speaker has already shared this information with the listener


Voy a salir aunque llueva mucho.
I am going out although it is raining.


Aunque París sea una ciudad impresionante, prefiero Londres.
Even though Paris is an astonishing city, I prefer London.


Aunque me duela la cabeza, voy a seguir trabajando.
Although I have a headache, I am going to keep on working.


Presente de Subjuntivo: The speaker is referring to a possibility in the future


No irás a ese viaje aunque consigas el dinero.
You will not go on that trip even if you get the money.


Voy a salir después aunque llueva mucho.
I am going out later even if it rains.


Aunque me supliques no me casaré contigo.
Even if you beg me I won't marry you.


Aunque esté nevando, voy a sacar al perro a pasear.
Although it is snowing, I am going to walk the dog.


Presente: The speaker is declaring something that is true


Aunque me duele la cabeza, voy a seguir trabajando.
Even though I have a headache, I am going to keep on working.


Aunque está nevando, voy a sacar al perro a pasear.
Although it is snowing, I am going to walk the dog.


Aunque París es una ciudad impresionante, prefiero Londres.
Although Paris is an astonishing city, I prefer London.


Voy a salir aunque llueve mucho.
I am going out despite the rain.


Q&A Forum 1 question, 1 answer

EmanuelB2Kwiziq Q&A regular contributor

Aunque Paris es una ciudad impresionante ... it seems to me that this is a fact everyone knows... shouldn't we use sunjunctive ... sea?

Asked 1 month ago
InmaKwiziq team member

Hola Emanuel

We are using the indicative in this case after aunque to express something that the speaker considers "a new piece of information" or simply "wants to state this piece of information as a true one". It is as if it was a confirmation of what he/she believes. He/she is making a point about that. 

However I understand that this could be taken as "shared" by everyone, because it is a universally known fact, (everyone knows Paris is beautiful) therefore triggering the subjunctive, as you were saying. 

So, this sentence could have been said in two slightly different situations:

1. It is something that everybody knows, it is obvious, but the speaker is determined to state it as a true fact. This is reinforced by the use of indicative.

2. The two speakers have already being talking about how beautiful Paris is, so they've shared this information and agreed on it. So if this bit of information is repeated in their conversation again, the subjunctive would be used, as they have shared this previously. It is something that is known and accepted by both "Paris is beautiful".

I hope this clarifies it for you. There are little nuances in Spanish when using "aunque". We are aware that "aunque" is a complex connective and we will be extending the content related to this in the future in Kwiziq, to make sure all these nuances are understood by the students.

Gracias y un saludo

Inma

Aunque Paris es una ciudad impresionante ... it seems to me that this is a fact everyone knows... shouldn't we use sunjunctive ... sea?

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