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Spanish grammar mistake

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Spanish grammar mistake

Postby Brazilian dude » Mon Mar 07, 2005 6:38 pm

For the Spanish experts, what's the mistake in the following text?

Los frutos

Entre 1726 a 1815, los académicos despojan al idioma de muchos colgajos etimológicos y la hacen más sencilla y práctica. Algunos criterios fijados en esa época siguen vigentes hoy, como las reglas de la b y la v y la escritura de c y z. También se cambiaron palabras como dotor, efeto y sinificar por los actuales doctor, efecto y significar.

La Real Academia Española elabora tres obras fundamentales: el Diccionario de Autoridades (entre 1726 y 1739), la Ortografía en 1741 y la Gramática en 1771.

What about this one? There's a tense here that looks odd to me.

[url]Si me hubiera guiado por lo que se dice de la región, seguramente me hubiese quedado en casa: que es un antro de narcos y lavadores de dinero, que es un "país" aparte donde el contrabando es moneda corriente, que aquí tienen cuenta grupos extremistas, que las triadas chinas actúan a sus anchas…¡Uy! [url]
Last edited by Brazilian dude on Mon Mar 07, 2005 7:00 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Spanish grammar mistake

Postby Brazilian dude » Mon Mar 07, 2005 6:54 pm

For the Spanish experts, what's the mistake in the following text?

Los frutos

Entre 1726 a 1815, los académicos despojan al idioma de muchos colgajos etimológicos y la hacen más sencilla y práctica. Algunos criterios fijados en esa época siguen vigentes hoy, como las reglas de la b y la v y la escritura de c y z. También se cambiaron palabras como dotor, efeto y sinificar por los actuales doctor, efecto y significar.

La Real Academia Española elabora tres obras fundamentales: el Diccionario de Autoridades (entre 1726 y 1739), la Ortografía en 1741 y la Gramática en 1771.

What about this one? That's one tense that looks odd to me:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/hi/spanish/specials/newsid_4291000/4291359.stm
Si me hubiera guiado por lo que se dice de la región, seguramente me hubiese quedado en casa: que es un antro de narcos y lavadores de dinero, que es un "país" aparte donde el contrabando es moneda corriente, que aquí tienen cuenta grupos extremistas, que las triadas chinas actúan a sus anchas…¡Uy!
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Postby Brazilian dude » Mon Mar 07, 2005 7:02 pm

I don't know how to delete the first one and add that features that allows you to click on a paragragh (which is then underlined when you click on it) taking you to the site I extracted it from.

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Postby Apoclima » Mon Mar 07, 2005 7:40 pm

los académicos despojan al idioma de muchos colgajos etimológicos y la hacen más sencilla y práctica.


The academics strip from the language alot of the cluttered, tattered etymologies and make it easier and more practical.

Why are the verbs in the present tense?

Why doesn't the "la" object correspond with the Masc. "el idioma?"

Also I would say, "más sencilla y más práctica."

That's all I have time for today!

"Hubiera" and "hubiese" in the same sentense! Pick a dialect, and stay with it, please!

Apo
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Re: Spanish grammar mistake

Postby tcward » Mon Mar 07, 2005 9:32 pm

I'm not a Spanish expert, by any means, but I can't resist a good challenge. ;)

I completely agree with Apo's comment regarding this sentence (at least I think this is what he was talking about):

Brazilian dude wrote:...los académicos despojan al idioma de muchos colgajos etimológicos y la hacen más sencilla y práctica.


Apoclima wrote:Why doesn't the "la" object [la hacen] correspond with the Masc. "el idioma?" [al idioma]


I wanted to change the "la hacen" to "le hacen", but it's been years since I studied Spanish and I can't remember if that's the correct form or not.

Brazilian dude wrote:...También se cambiaron palabras como dotor, efeto y sinificar por los actuales doctor, efecto y significar.


Is "se cambiaron" correct form? That looks wrong, too, to me. And I think I would have expected "de los actuales" rather than "por los actuales", but that could really be showing my inferior knowledge of Spanish grammar.

I'll have to read more of the last quote to make sense of it all...

Si me hubiera guiado por lo que se dice de la región, seguramente me hubiese quedado en casa: que es un antro de narcos y lavadores de dinero, que es un "país" aparte donde el contrabando es moneda corriente, que aquí tienen cuenta grupos extremistas, que las triadas chinas actúan a sus anchas…¡Uy!

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Postby Apoclima » Tue Mar 08, 2005 5:20 am

Entre 1726 a 1815, los académicos despojaron al idioma de muchos colgajos etimológicos y lo hicieron más sencillo y práctico. Algunos criterios fijados en esa época siguen vigentes hoy, como las reglas de la 'b' y la 'v' y la escritura de 'c' y 'z'. También se cambiaron palabras como "dotor," "efeto" y "sinificar" por los actuales "doctor," "efecto" y "significar."

La Real Academia Española elaboró tres obras fundamentales: el Diccionario de Autoridades (entre 1726 y 1739), la Ortografía en 1741 y la Gramática en 1771.

Si me hubiera guiado por lo que se dice de la región, seguramente me habría quedado en casa:

Or:

Si me hubiese guiado por lo que se dice de la región, seguramente me habría quedado en casa:

But one does hear the past subjunctive "-iera" form of haber for the conditional.

Si me hubiera guiado por lo que se dice de la región, seguramente, hubiera quedado en casa:

Another point is that the 'ra' form and NOT the 'se' form of the subjunctive can be used stylistically in formal Spanish. The trouble is, it is rare or very literary with verbs and auxiliaries other than 'haber', 'deber', 'querer', 'poder'. It is especially common with 'haber'.

It would have been terrible
Habría / hubiera sido terrible

c) The reason 'haber' is the most common auxiliary that uses the past subjunctive form in the main clause, is that 'haber' is necessary for the third conditional (3):

'If I had watched that programme, I would have known that'.-
'Si hubiera / hubiese visto este programa, habría / hubiera sabido eso' (so here, contrary to (a) we can have past subjunctive in each clause. (This is usually accepted as good Spanish though with the restriction to the aforementioned verbs.)


Observations about the use of Spanish conditional clauses

I was always told not to mix "-ra" and "-se," but rather to pick one and stick with it.

The "-ra" form is always correct, whereas the "-se" form is only correct in certain types of clauses.


Spanish language

Apparently you can use '-se' in the 'if' clause, but not in the main clause, so this sentense may be OK.

Boy, I'm not sure!

But below is a page that obviously uses this "si ....hubiese, hubiera...." form.

A stylistic thing?

Si hubiese habido eficiencia…

The '-se' form is as perfectly intelligible to me as the '-ra' form. It just sounds archaic ("church words") to me like the 'vosotros' form, which I immediately understand, but never got used to using.

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Postby Apoclima » Tue Mar 08, 2005 5:59 am

Here we go:

Alternancia de las formas -ra/-se en el
español uruguayo del siglo XIX


Summary in English According to studies carried out so far, the Uruguayan variety of Spanish has experienced a change in the norm regarding the use of the allomorphs of the subjunctive preterit: from an initial preponderance of cantase in the 18th century, the change has developed the present situation, where cantara is the prevalent form. This study analyzes the alternation between cantara and cantase during the first part of the 19th century, to verify if the mentioned change starts in this period. However, results show a similar situation to that of the before century. Besides, non-synonymous uses of cantara and cantase have been also analyzed, in order to establish the norm about the use of these verbal forms in 19th century Uruguayan Spanish


se estudiarán también los usos de -ra no sinónimos de -se, esto es, los valores arcaicos que mantiene aquella forma de su primitiva significación indicativa, así como ciertos usos anómalos de cantase.


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Postby WonderingSpaniard » Tue Mar 08, 2005 8:00 am

Well, Sitran, I guess you're too used to Seville and Latin American Spanish... Let me give an explanation to this text.

First of all, the concordance is definately wrong, that's for sure. "Lo" should replace "la", no question there...

Nonetheless, the rest is good Spanish. There is something widely used when narrating (important) events called "Presente Histórico". Logically there could be no better place to employ it than a piece of historical information. It brings the audience closer to the deed, which is very appropriate. Now that I think of it, I wouldn't dare using it in English... But, no doubt, it's perfect Spanish, no need to change it, actually.

As to the hubiera/hubiese thing, well, in Spain you constantly hear both of them, as perfect synonyms except in the cases you mention ("hubiese" is not valid for the non-if clause), although I detect a tendence not to repeat the tenses. It looks nicer to us, I think: "Si hubiese sabido que no ibas a venir, me habría quedado y hubiera hecho mis deberes".

Regards,

WS.
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Postby Apoclima » Tue Mar 08, 2005 9:33 am

I thought of the historical present tense narrative, but really, it is as dead as the "truisms" you espouse.

In English, this amounts to "I says."

The Culmination of Efforts

Between the years 1726 and 1815, the academicians strip
the language of many tattered and tangled etymologies and make her (el idioma castellano, leemos, español; la lengua) easy and more practical.

Some of the established standards of that era are followed today like the rules of 'b' and 'v' and of 'c' and 'z'.

También se cambiaron palabras como dotor, efeto y sinificar por los actuales doctor, efecto y significar.


Why did the historical present tense stop here?

Why not continue with the historical present tense?

"También se cambian palabras......"

Halo?

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Postby Brazilian dude » Tue Mar 08, 2005 6:02 pm

I thought of the historical present tense narrative, but really, it is as dead as the "truisms" you espouse.

I don't think so. It's alive and kicking. By the way, I agree with everything that Wondering Spaniard said. Hubiese doesn't sound good in the non-if clause, although some writers have made this "mistake". And I also think varying from hubiese and hubiera on one side and hubiera and habría on the other is a nice stylistical tool.

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Postby Brazilian dude » Tue Mar 08, 2005 8:29 pm

I was always told not to mix "-ra" and "-se," but rather to pick one and stick with it.

I use both.

Why did the historical present tense stop here?

Why not continue with the historical present tense?

For stylistic variation? It sounds good to me.

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Re: Spanish grammar mistake

Postby tcward » Tue Mar 08, 2005 11:27 pm

tcward wrote:...And I think I would have expected "de los actuales" rather than "por los actuales"...


Is no one man enough to explain my complete mistake here? ;) I started to post something about it this morning -- actually, I did post it and deleted it after the fact.

It's been so long since I used Spanish conversationally, in my mind the latter examples (with the 'c' added) were the earlier forms of the words. (...well, you know, in Italian they moved away from the integral 'c'... so I wasn't completely out of my gourd. Yeah, right.)

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Postby Brazilian dude » Wed Mar 09, 2005 5:48 pm

Simply because cambiar is cambiar something for something, that's all there is to it.

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Postby Apoclima » Wed Mar 09, 2005 9:59 pm

So, BD, What mistake were you looking for in your first example? Just the "la" and the adjectives.

Well, I did catch that one!

Anyway, about the "presente histórico!"

I guess my joke was too obscure:

I thought of the historical present tense narrative, but really, it is as dead as the "truisms" you espouse.

In English, this amounts to "I says."


In the vernacular people say in stories or jokes:

'He says,"I hear your wife throws you out at night."'

'So I says, "She doesn't mean to, she is just so drunk she thinks I am the dog."

Since it is used in jokes, aphorisms and anecdotes I thought that it was obvious!

Cuando el Present Simple se refiere al tiempo pasado se usa para:
hacer una acción del pasado más cercana al presente
Se puede usar un tiempo verbal presente para referirse a un tiempo real pasado. Si te fijas en los usos, siempre es para darle más vida al pasado, acercándolo, dramatizándolo.

1.En los chistes y anécdotas y similares que contamos al hablar (lenguaje oral)
Y entonces le pregunta al alienígena ¡si tenía pelos en las piernas!
El otro día va y llega la de Inglés y me dice...
And then he asks the alien if it had hairy legs!
The other day my English teacher comes and says...

2. En anotaciones de teatro, guiones... (literatura)
Entra Hamlet
Pippi se sube al árbol Hamlet enters
Pippi climbs the tree
Presente histórico (historia, narraciones dramatizadas)
La Revolución francesa se produce en 1789
The French Revolution takes place in 1789

3.En lenguaje periodístico (suele ir en presente simple pero en pasiva) (prensa, TV, radio...)
The government passes war budget
War budget is passed El gobierno aprueba presupuesto para la guerra
Se aprueba presupuesto para la guerra


I guess I'll take your word that the change to the preterite in the third verb is a "welcome" stylistic effect, but I would like some other examples. I know that if I made this "welcome" stylistic effect while using the "presente histórico" that it would be evidence of my ignorance of Spanish.

About the "-se" ending of the past subjunctive:

Although, as I have said, I readily understand it, but I had never really thought about it, because I don't actively use it.
It is interesting to know that it should only be used in the "if" clause, and I was trying to get to the bottom of the "why" for this. I did know that the "-ra" ending can replace the conditional. I often use this in informal speech.

I must confess that this use of tenses looks odd to me, "Si hubiese sabido que no ibas a venir, me habría quedado y hubiera hecho mis deberes". I'll have to take your word for it, WS.

Very interesting! Thanks BD and WS!

But what looks odd to you, BD, in the second example?

There's a tense here that looks odd to me.


What tense were you talking about?

Apo
Last edited by Apoclima on Thu Mar 10, 2005 2:59 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Postby Apoclima » Thu Mar 10, 2005 1:14 am

I was searching for something like this on the Spanish historical present, but perhaps someone else will have more luck with that.

I did find this about English:

History Papers. Conversely, past-tense verbs should dominate history papers because the vividness of the present tense pertains less to the discussion of history than it does to literature. While it's possible to describe the historical past in the present tense, such a posture belongs more naturally to casual conversation than formal writing.


The problem with "right here right now" in writing assignments for a history class is the writer doesn't have to engage the reader in the story. The writing has the reader's full and undivided attention at all times, because I'm the reader and I'm totally involved—I guarantee it!—in whatever you have to say. Nor do you need to encourage me to see the past vividly. I do that naturally, because it's my job and I love it. So, for your writing assignments in a history course, please don't use the present tense, when describing the past. Use the past tense, instead.


Mixing Past Tenses and Present Tenses. Including present-tense verbs in historical, academic prose can also lead to trouble when, as is inevitable, you must at some point revert to past-tense verbs. Here's what it sounds like when you mix present and past tenses:

Almost every year of his reign Charlemagne is forced to go and vanquish the Saxons again and has to re-Christianize them on the spot. It was a serious problem and he never completely resolved it.


If your paper is part of a historical study and you must by definition spend the majority of your time in the past tense, it's best just to stay there as much as possible. Whatever you do, try not to flip back and forth between past and present verb forms.


Writing Guide: Present-Tense Verbs

Apparently this guy doesn't want a 'welcome' stylistic variation in the papers he reads.

What do Spanish-speaking professors have to say about it?

I'll keep looking!

Apo
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