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aleCcowaN December 18, 2015 07:37 AM

Examples of Spanish subjunctive
I'm starting this thread to write down some examples of Spanish subjunctive as I find them.

The first one, from last night episode of The Big Bang Theory:

Sheldon- You're back!
Arthur Jeffries - It doesn't seem like it's up to me

Sheldon- ¡Volviste!
Arthur - No parece que dependa de mí / No que yo lo decida.

aleCcowaN February 02, 2016 01:21 PM

From Billions, season 1, episode 3

Axelrod - I'm sorry to break it to you, but...

Axelrod - Siento ser yo el que te lo diga, pero ...

aleCcowaN March 12, 2016 02:17 PM

From Father Brown, season 4 episode 6

Mrs. McCarthy - "A situation I would not be in were it not for you!"

Mrs. McCarthy - "¡Situación en la que no estaría si no fuera por usted/por su causa!"

aleCcowaN April 16, 2016 06:41 AM

there's no stopping me = no hay [quien/que] me detenga <notice the lack of accents; that doesn't mean que is a conjunction here>

From Don't Stop Me Now, by Queen

I'm a racing car passing by like Lady Godiva
I'm gonna go go go
There's no stopping me

soy un auto de carreras pasando por delante como Lady Godiva*,
voy a darle, darle, darle
¡No hay que me detenga!

(* pronounced /'leidi go'diba/)

From Scarface

Tony Montana: «Okay, here's the story. I come from the gutter. I know that. I got no education... but that's okay. I know the street, and I'm making all the right connections. With the right woman, there's no stopping me. I could go right to the top.»

Tony Montana: «OK, esta es la historia. Vengo de los barrios bajos. Lo sé. No tengo educación ... pero eso está bien. Conozco la calle, y estoy haciendo buenos contactos. Con la mujer adecuada no hay quien me detenga. Podría ir directo a la cima.»

aleCcowaN July 09, 2016 01:29 PM

not to my knowledge = no, que yo sepa

aleCcowaN March 18, 2017 03:26 PM

Hercule Poirot: -"The grand vizier Ptahotep was crushed to death under a thousand pieces of silver because he embezzled his master's treasury"
Mr Pennington: -"You don't say!"

Hercule Poirot: -"El gran visir Ptahotep fue hecho aplastar bajo el peso de mil barras de plata porque desfalcó las riquezas de su amo"
Mr Pennington: -"¡No me diga!"

From Death on the Nile (1978)

Bobbert May 18, 2017 04:50 PM


This thread that you started is so helpful and valuable. I hope you will continue to add more examples as you find them.

I know it costs you a lot of work, but I depend on examples like these.

Este hilo que iniciaste es muy útil y valioso. Espero que continúes agregando más ejemplos a medida que los encuentres.

Sé que te cuesta mucho trabajo, pero yo dependo de ejemplos como estos.

(No importa lo pequeños que sean, por favor háganme el favor de corregir siempre mis errores españoles.)

aleCcowaN May 18, 2017 06:57 PM

Your wish is my command ;)

An example where both indicative and subjunctive are valid, but conveying different nuances

From Britain's Got Talent, season 11, episode 2, Daliso Chaponda's audition:

Amanda Holden: -"Were your parents disappointed that one of you is a comedian and one of you is a doctor?"

Daliso Chaponda: -"They're absolutely horrified because I was studying computer programming so, I had a future! and I just decided, no!!! let me be a clown!!!"

A.H.: - "¿No se decepcionaron tus padres de que uno de ustedes terminara siendo comediante y el otro, doctor?"

D.C.: -"Estaban completamente horrorizados porque yo estaba estudiando programación así que ¡tenía futuro! y simplemente decidí ¡¡¡no, déjenme que sea un payaso!!!"

"que sea un payaso" instead of "ser un payaso" implies asking for their blessing, though no real consequence would have come of them withholding it.

movedtospain2017 July 26, 2017 06:25 AM

Uff yo tengo muchos problemas con el subjuntivo! Nunca llegue a entenderlo! Nunca 'estudie' español simplemente lo aprendí viviendo en España, y por eso no lo hablo muy bien ni entiendo estos conceptos gramaticales!

Gracias por todo.

poli July 26, 2017 06:59 PM

It's true that there are cases in which nuance places a role in whether or not to use the subjunctive, and that is difficult to learn. But there are other cases that are strictly rule-driven, and not really hard to learn.

One rule is if you use the conditional (I would in English) in a sentence with two conjugated verbs, the other verb will always be conjugated in the imperfect subjunctive. Example: I would do it if could do it. Lo haría si supiera hacerlo. There are many other rule-related uses of the subjunctive that just require memorization.

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