Decades in Spanish

The most common way to talk about decades in Spanish is to use the article "los". Have a look at the following examples: 

Yo fui jipi en los setenta.I was a hippy in the seventies.

En los noventa fundamos nuestra asociación.We founded our association in the nineties.

Me encanta la moda de los cincuenta.I love fifties fashion/I love the fashion of the fifties.

 

The masculine article "los" is always used because it refers to "años" (years). You can also choose to include the the word años:

Me encanta la moda de los años cincuenta.I love fifties fashion/I love the fashion of the fifties.

You may also use the Spanish word decada if you use the whole phrase: in the decade of the ...

En la década de los ochenta...In the decade of the eighties...

A very common error for English speakers is to express the decade as a plural because the plural form is used in English, e.g. in the fifties, in the nineties. However, the plural form is incorrect in Spanish e.g  en los cincuentas, en los noventas.

Remember decades are always singular in Spanish:

En los cuarenta (correct)

En los cuarentas (incorrect)

 

You can also write the decade in digits:

En los cincuenta = En los 50

 

Decades can also be used with other prepositions like desde, hasta or por:

Desde los 30 hasta los 70 España tuvo una dictadura.From the 30s to the 70s Spain had a dictatorship.

-¿Cuándo murió Elvis? -Creo que por los setenta.-When did Elvis die? - I think some time in the seventies.

 

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Examples and resources

En los noventa fundamos nuestra asociación.We founded our association in the nineties.
Me encanta la moda de los años cincuenta.I love fifties fashion/I love the fashion of the fifties.
Yo fui jipi en los setenta.I was a hippy in the seventies.
En la década de los ochenta...In the decade of the eighties...
-¿Cuándo murió Elvis? -Creo que por los setenta.-When did Elvis die? - I think some time in the seventies.
Desde los 30 hasta los 70 España tuvo una dictadura.From the 30s to the 70s Spain had a dictatorship.
Me encanta la moda de los cincuenta.I love fifties fashion/I love the fashion of the fifties.
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