How Do You Say “Passed Away” In Spanish?

Spanish is a beautiful language that is spoken by millions of people all over the world. Learning a new language can be a challenging but rewarding experience, and Spanish is no exception. In this article, we will explore the Spanish translation of the phrase “passed away”.

The Spanish translation for “passed away” is “falleció”. This word is used to describe the act of someone dying or passing away.

How Do You Pronounce The Spanish Word For “Passed Away”?

Learning how to properly pronounce words in a foreign language can be a challenging but rewarding experience. Properly pronouncing the Spanish word for “passed away” can help you communicate more effectively with Spanish speakers and show respect for their language and culture. The Spanish word for “passed away” is “fallecido”.

Phonetic Breakdown

The phonetic breakdown of “fallecido” is as follows:

Letter(s) Pronunciation
f fa
a ah
ll ly
e eh
c th
i ee
d oh
o oh

Tips For Pronunciation

  • Practice the phonetic breakdown of “fallecido” slowly and carefully, paying close attention to each sound.
  • Listen to native Spanish speakers pronounce the word and try to mimic their pronunciation.
  • Practice speaking Spanish regularly to improve your overall pronunciation skills.
  • Use online resources, such as pronunciation guides and audio recordings, to help you improve your pronunciation.

Proper Grammatical Use Of The Spanish Word For “Passed Away”

When communicating the loss of a loved one, it’s crucial to use proper grammar and phrasing. In the Spanish language, the phrase “passed away” is commonly translated as “fallecer” or “fallecido/a.”

Placement Of “Passed Away” In Sentences

In Spanish, “passed away” is typically used as a verb and can be placed in various parts of a sentence depending on the context. For example:

  • “Mi abuelo falleció ayer.” – “My grandfather passed away yesterday.”
  • “Ella ha fallecido después de una larga enfermedad.” – “She has passed away after a long illness.”

As shown in the examples, “fallecer” can be used in the past tense or present perfect tense to indicate that the person has passed away.

Verb Conjugations Or Tenses

When using “fallecer” as a verb, it’s important to conjugate it correctly based on the subject of the sentence. Here are the conjugations for “fallecer” in the present tense:

Subject Conjugation
Yo fal lez co
fal lec es
Él / Ella / Usted fal le ce
Nosotros / Nosotras fal le ce mos
Vosotros / Vosotras fal le céis
Ellos / Ellas / Ustedes fal le cen

For example, “Mi padre fallece pronto” means “My father is passing away soon.”

Agreement With Gender And Number

When using “fallecido/a” as an adjective to describe the deceased person, it’s important to agree the word with the gender and number of the person. For example:

  • “Mi abuela fallecida era muy cariñosa.” – “My deceased grandmother was very loving.” (feminine singular)
  • “Mis padres fallecidos me dejaron una herencia.” – “My deceased parents left me an inheritance.” (masculine plural)

Common Exceptions

One common exception to the use of “fallecer” is when referring to a pet or animal. In this case, the word “morir” is more commonly used. For example, “Mi perro murió ayer” means “My dog died yesterday.”

Another exception is when referring to a person who has died as a result of suicide. In this case, the phrase “se quitó la vida” or “se suicidó” is more commonly used. For example, “Mi amigo se quitó la vida hace dos años” means “My friend took his own life two years ago.”

Examples Of Phrases Using The Spanish Word For “Passed Away”

When someone passes away, it can be difficult to find the right words to express your condolences. In Spanish, there are several phrases that can be used to express sympathy and acknowledge the loss of a loved one. Here are some common phrases and examples of how they can be used:

Phrases With “Fallecer”

“Fallecer” is a common verb used to express the concept of passing away. Here are some examples:

Phrase Translation Example Sentence
Fallecer To pass away Mi abuela falleció ayer.
Fallecimiento Passing away Estamos muy tristes por el fallecimiento de tu padre.
Ha fallecido Has passed away Lo siento mucho, pero tu tío ha fallecido.

Phrases With “Fallecido”

“Fallecido” is the past participle of “fallecer” and can be used as an adjective to describe someone who has passed away. Here are some examples:

Phrase Translation Example Sentence
El fallecido The deceased La familia del fallecido agradece sus condolencias.
La persona fallecida The deceased person La persona fallecida era muy querida por todos.
Mis condolencias por el fallecido My condolences for the deceased Mis condolencias por el fallecido, era un gran amigo.

Example Spanish Dialogue

Here is an example conversation in Spanish that includes the use of “fallecer” and “fallecido”:

María: Hola Antonio, ¿cómo estás?

Antonio: Hola María, estoy un poco triste. Mi abuelo ha fallecido.

María: Lo siento mucho, Antonio. ¿Cuándo fue?

Antonio: Falleció la semana pasada.

María: Mis condolencias por el fallecido. ¿Cómo estás tú?

Antonio: Gracias, estoy bien. Es difícil, pero estoy tratando de aceptarlo.


María: Hi Antonio, how are you?

Antonio: Hi María, I’m a little sad. My grandfather passed away.

María: I’m so sorry, Antonio. When was it?

Antonio: He passed away last week.

María: My condolences for the deceased. How are you doing?

Antonio: Thank you, I’m doing okay. It’s hard, but I’m trying to come to terms with it.

More Contextual Uses Of The Spanish Word For “Passed Away”

When it comes to discussing the passing of a loved one, it’s important to understand the varying contexts in which the Spanish word for “passed away” is used. From formal to informal, slang to idiomatic expressions, and even cultural or historical references, there are many ways to express the idea of death in Spanish.

Formal Usage Of Passed Away

In formal settings, such as obituaries or legal documents, the Spanish word for “passed away” is often used in its most straightforward form: “fallecer.” This term is considered the most respectful and formal way to express the idea of death in Spanish. It’s important to note that this term is often used in the third person, as in “él falleció” (he passed away) or “ella falleció” (she passed away).

Informal Usage Of Passed Away

Informally, there are many ways to express the idea of death in Spanish. One common term is “morir,” which simply means “to die.” This term is often used in everyday conversation and is considered less formal than “fallecer.” Other informal terms include “irse” (to leave), “partir” (to depart), and “descansar en paz” (to rest in peace).

Other Contexts Such As Slang, Idiomatic Expressions, Or Cultural/historical Uses

Like any language, Spanish has its fair share of slang and idiomatic expressions related to death. For example, “palmarla” is a common slang term that means “to kick the bucket.” Similarly, “pasar a mejor vida” (to pass on to a better life) is an idiomatic expression that is often used to express the idea of death in a more positive light.

Additionally, there are many cultural and historical references related to death in Spanish. For example, “Día de los Muertos” (Day of the Dead) is a Mexican holiday that celebrates the lives of those who have passed away. In Spain, the “Semana Santa” (Holy Week) celebration often includes references to death and resurrection.

Popular Cultural Usage, If Applicable

In popular culture, the Spanish word for “passed away” is often used in songs, movies, and TV shows. For example, the famous song “La Llorona” includes the lyrics “Ay de mí, Llorona, Llorona, Llorona, ya no me llores” (Oh woe is me, Llorona, Llorona, Llorona, don’t cry for me anymore), which express the idea of death and mourning. Similarly, the movie “Coco” explores the Mexican tradition of “Día de los Muertos” and includes many references to death and the afterlife.

Regional Variations Of The Spanish Word For “Passed Away”

Just like any language, Spanish varies from region to region, and this is evident in the different words used to describe the concept of “passed away”.

How The Spanish Word For Passed Away Is Used In Different Spanish-speaking Countries

In Spain, the most common word used for “passed away” is “fallecer”. This word is also used in some Latin American countries, such as Chile and Argentina. In Mexico, however, the most commonly used word is “fallecer” or “fallecido”, but it is also common to use “fallecer” in combination with the word “irse” (to go). For example, “se fue a fallecer” can be used to mean “he/she went to pass away”.

In some countries, such as Colombia and Venezuela, the word “fallecer” is not commonly used at all. Instead, they use the word “fallecido” or “fallecida”, which directly translates to “deceased”. In other countries, such as Peru and Ecuador, the word “fallecer” is used, but it is also common to use the word “fallecido” or “fallecida”.

Regional Pronunciations

Regional variations are not limited to the words used to describe “passed away”, but also extend to the pronunciations of these words. For example, in Spain, the “ll” sound in “fallecer” is pronounced differently than in Latin America. In Spain, it is pronounced as a “y” sound, while in Latin America, it is pronounced as a “j” sound. This can result in different spellings of the same word, such as “fallecer” vs “fallecer”, depending on the region.

Another example is the pronunciation of the letter “s”. In some regions, such as Argentina, the “s” sound is often omitted at the end of words, resulting in the word “fallecío” instead of “falleció”.

Overall, it is important to be aware of regional variations when using Spanish to communicate about sensitive topics such as death. Understanding the different words and pronunciations used in different regions can help ensure clear and respectful communication.

Other Uses Of The Spanish Word For “Passed Away” In Speaking & Writing

While “pasar away” (or “fallecer”) is commonly used in Spanish to refer to someone’s death, it is important to note that the phrase has other uses as well. Depending on the context, “pasar away” can have different meanings that may not necessarily relate to someone’s passing.

Uses Of “Pasar Away” Beyond Death

Here are some examples of how “pasar away” can be used in different contexts:

  • To describe the loss of something: “Pasó away mi oportunidad de conseguir ese trabajo” (I missed my chance to get that job)
  • To indicate the end of something: “Pasó away el tiempo de entrega” (The deadline passed)
  • To refer to a change of state: “Pasó away de ser un niño a un adulto” (He went from being a child to an adult)

As you can see, “pasar away” can have various meanings depending on the situation. To avoid confusion, it is important to pay attention to the context in which the phrase is being used. In most cases, it will be clear whether “pasar away” refers to someone’s passing or to something else entirely.

Common Words And Phrases Similar To The Spanish Word For “Passed Away”

When it comes to talking about the death of a loved one, the Spanish language offers several words and phrases to express this difficult moment. Here are some common words and phrases similar to the Spanish word for “passed away”:

Synonyms And Related Terms

Below are some of the most commonly used words and phrases in Spanish that are similar in meaning to “passed away”:

Word/Phrase Meaning
Fallecer To pass away, to die
Morir To die
Partir To depart, to leave
Irse To go away
Dejar este mundo To leave this world

While these words and phrases are similar in meaning to “passed away,” they may be used differently depending on the context and the speaker’s preference.


On the other hand, there are also words and phrases that are antonyms or opposite in meaning to “passed away.” Here are some examples:

  • Vivir
  • To live
  • Nacer
  • To be born
  • Existir
  • To exist

These words and phrases highlight the opposite of death which is life and existence.

Mistakes To Avoid When Using The Spanish Word For “Passed Away”

Learning a new language can be a daunting task. It requires a lot of practice and patience to become proficient in a foreign language. One of the most challenging aspects of learning a new language is understanding the nuances of the language. When it comes to using the Spanish word for “passed away,” many non-native speakers make common mistakes. Here are some of the most common errors made by non-native speakers and tips on how to avoid them:

1. Using The Wrong Verb Tense

One of the most common mistakes made by non-native speakers is using the wrong verb tense when using the Spanish word for “passed away.” In Spanish, the most common verb tense used to describe someone who has passed away is the preterite tense. This tense is used to describe a completed action in the past. For example:

  • Incorrect: Él está muerto. (He is dead.)
  • Correct: Él murió. (He passed away.)

Make sure to use the correct verb tense when using the Spanish word for “passed away.”

2. Using The Wrong Verb Form

Another common mistake made by non-native speakers is using the wrong verb form when using the Spanish word for “passed away.” The correct verb form to use is “morir,” which means “to die.” For example:

  • Incorrect: Él falleció. (He passed away.)
  • Correct: Él murió. (He passed away.)

Make sure to use the correct verb form when using the Spanish word for “passed away.”

3. Using The Wrong Preposition

Non-native speakers also commonly make mistakes when using the preposition that goes with the Spanish word for “passed away.” The correct preposition to use is “de.” For example:

  • Incorrect: Él murió en el hospital. (He passed away in the hospital.)
  • Correct: Él murió de un ataque al corazón. (He passed away from a heart attack.)

Make sure to use the correct preposition when using the Spanish word for “passed away.”

By avoiding these common mistakes, non-native speakers can use the Spanish word for “passed away” correctly and effectively.


In this blog post, we have discussed various ways to say “passed away” in Spanish. We have learned that while “fallecer” and “fallecido” are the most commonly used terms, there are other options such as “fallecer a causa de” and “fallecer por”. Additionally, we have explored regional variations and cultural nuances that may affect the choice of words.

Encouragement To Practice And Use Passed Away In Real-life Conversations

Learning how to express condolences and talk about death in another language can be challenging, but it is an important skill for anyone who wants to communicate effectively with Spanish-speaking individuals. We encourage you to practice using the phrases discussed in this article and to seek out opportunities to have real-life conversations with native speakers. By doing so, you will not only improve your language skills but also show empathy and respect for different cultures and traditions. Remember, language is a tool for connection and understanding, and even small efforts can make a big difference.

Shawn Manaher

Shawn Manaher is the founder and CEO of The Content Authority and He’s a seasoned innovator, harnessing the power of technology to connect cultures through language. His worse translation though is when he refers to “pancakes” as “flat waffles”.