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Old May 01, 2013, 12:09 AM
Laubster Laubster is offline
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¡Ayuda!

I am trying to translate the phrase "He gives it to John" but am not sure if I should be saying "Lo da al John" or "Se lo da al John" or maybe "Le da al John." What is the proper way to word this?

Thanks!!
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  #2  
Old May 01, 2013, 06:28 AM
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Rusty Rusty is offline
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There are two objects involved - 'it' is the direct object and 'John' is the indirect object.
You've chosen to use 'lo' as the direct object pronoun. This is fine, as long as the direct object is masculine, and singular, or if it represents an idea. If the direct object is plural, 'los' would be used (unless all objects were feminine, in which case 'las' would be needed).
The indirect object is identified by a phrase that begins with the preposition 'a'. If it is a masculine object, it will be preceded by 'al' ('a' + 'el' = 'al'). If it is a feminine object, it will be preceded by 'a la'. If it's a person's name, there is no article needed. Since 'John' is a proper name, only 'a' should precede it.
Spanish also allows a redundant indirect object pronoun. In the third person, this would be 'le', no matter the gender of the indirect object. If the indirect object is plural, 'les' would be used, no matter the gender of the objects.

As you know, object pronouns precede the conjugated verb. The indirect object pronoun is followed by the direct object pronoun.

If both the direct object pronoun and the indirect object pronoun are in the third person, Spanish imposes a special form for the indirect object pronoun. It must be changed to 'se'.

Given this information, you should be able to come up with the right translation. Your first two tries were very close. There's only one thing to fix.
You can use either one, after fixing the problem. Spanish folks don't frown on the use of the redundant indirect object pronoun, by the way, so feel free to use it.

Welcome to the forums, by the way.
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Old May 03, 2013, 04:21 AM
Laubster Laubster is offline
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Hi Rusty,

Thanks for the in-depth response! So I guess the proper phrase would be: Lo da a John or Se lo da a John?

Chris
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Old May 03, 2013, 03:10 PM
Caramelita Caramelita is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Laubster View Post
Hi Rusty,

Thanks for the in-depth response! So I guess the proper phrase would be: Lo da a John or Se lo da a John?

Chris

"Se lo da a John" is correct, in case your object is masculine
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Old May 03, 2013, 09:47 PM
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Both are correct, with the understanding that your object is masculine or an idea.
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Old May 03, 2013, 11:05 PM
Laubster Laubster is offline
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Yes, the concept was just a generic masculine object, thanks again!!!
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Old May 03, 2013, 11:09 PM
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¡No hay de qué!
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