Verbs with i ______ y change in the preterite

There is another group of verbs that have the change i — y in the preterit in the third person singular and plural. This change occurs because the unstressed i appears between two vowels. The following conjugation illustrates this spelling change. Note that in all of the other forms of the verb, there is a written accent over the í.


Person stem ending meaning
yole í
el/ella le
ustedes leyeron
nosotros leímos
ellos/ellas leyeron

The following verbs follow the same pattern:

caer (to fall) oír
caerse (to fall down)poseer

There is another slightly different verbal pattern in the preterit in which i — y. This group of verbs ends in -uir. This group is different from the previous one because the written accent occurs only over the yo form of the verb (1). The vowel -i- in the remaining verbal endings (second person singular, first and second person plural) does not receive a written accent. The following conjugation illustrates this spelling change.


Personstemending meaning
yohuíI fled
tuhuisteyou fled
el/ellahuhe/she fled
ustedhuyou (formal) fled
ustedeshuyeronyou guys fled
nosotros huímoswe fled
ellos/ellas huyeron they fled

Verbs bellow follow the same pattern:

construir fluir
contribuir incluir