Spanish word of the week: ojalá

ojalá EXCLAMATION I hope; if only

This is one of the many Spanish words which originate from Arabic (O Allah!). Originally it might have been used in fervent prayer, but now it means little more than I hope or the slightly more emotional if only.

Don’t forget the upside down exclamation mark at the beginning and be careful to use a verb in the correct tense of subjunctive after ¡ojalá!

¡Ojalá Silvia venga hoy! I hope Silvia comes today!
(present subjunctive of venir)

¡Ojalá pudiera! If only I could!
(past subjunctive of poder)

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