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When to use the verb "Ser" and when to use "Estar"

 

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  #41  
Old March 20, 2011, 12:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by laepelba View Post
Now I still have just a couple of quick questions:

One of the authors says that you can use "either SER or ESTAR ... with locatives, with a consistent difference in meaning." He then goes on to give examples, which include the following: "(al taxista) Pare, pare, mi casa es aquí. (= mi casa es ésta)". I don't at all understand this. I don't see how this is any different than needing to use "estar" for location.
The use of "mi casa es aquí" is to relate immediately say, to the taxi driver, that you home is in this location. Just like you might say "it is here!" to tell the driver to stop.


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Originally Posted by laepelba View Post
The next question has to do with the choice of imperfect vs. preterite than with ser vs. estar. An author of one of the articles writes the following:

Quote:
Consider a question like ¿Quién fue Simón Bolívar? -- Imagine a child standing in front of a parent and asking the question. The answer Fue un general pretty much closes the subject. It's time for dinner and there is no time for elaboration - book closed. On the other hand, Era un general suggests strongly that the parent is about to take the time, open up the book, so to speak and begin to tell the child more.
I sort of get this, but not entirely. Would someone kindly comment on this a bit further? Thanks!
Correct. You can use both to say the same thing, but generally you use "fue" to give a "short" answer.

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Originally Posted by laepelba View Post
When talking about the use of ser vs. estar + adjective or participle changing the meaning of the sentence, I don't see "sentado" on any of the lists. Doesn't "ser + sentado" mean "sensible" and estar + sentado" mean "to be seated"?
Thanks SO much!!
Correct again, but consider the following:

Be seated at theater (instead of standing)

Be seated by your host.
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  #42  
Old March 20, 2011, 06:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chileno View Post
The use of "mi casa es aquí" is to relate immediately say, to the taxi driver, that you home is in this location. Just like you might say "it is here!" to tell the driver to stop.
Sorry, Chileno - I don't always follow your explanations. I feel here like I'm not getting any more information than what was in my original question. I don't understand why it's more correct to say to the driver "mi casa es aquí" than it would be to say "mi casa está aquí"....

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Originally Posted by chileno View Post
Correct. You can use both to say the same thing, but generally you use "fue" to give a "short" answer.
I know, that's what the paragraph says. But could you expound on that a bit. I don't really exactly follow that......

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Originally Posted by chileno View Post
Correct again, but consider the following:

Be seated at theater (instead of standing)

Be seated by your host.
Huh??
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  #43  
Old March 20, 2011, 07:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by laepelba View Post
  • The same author compares the use of ser as roughly equivalent to "equals" in a way that links nouns/pronouns to the subject of the verb.
Ser is the only verbo sustantivo in Spanish, that is, it's the only verb that asserts about the subject what the complement declares:

La leche es buena para los huesos.

Estar only can refer to attributes of the subject, but mainly it's not a verbo sustantivo (what is beyond obvious; the beyond part being the important one)

Quote:
Originally Posted by laepelba View Post
  • One of the authors says that you can use "either SER or ESTAR ... with locatives, with a consistent difference in meaning." He then goes on to give examples, which include the following: "(al taxista) Pare, pare, mi casa es aquí. (= mi casa es ésta)". I don't at all understand this. I don't see how this is any different than needing to use "estar" for location.
Just to add that you can say "está a 1000 millas de aquí" or "está delante de tu nariz", but when you say "es aquí" as well as "es ésta", the thing must be on sight or you must be on the spot.

Quote:
Originally Posted by laepelba View Post
  • The next question has to do with the choice of imperfect vs. preterite than with ser vs. estar. An author of one of the articles writes the following:
I sort of get this, but not entirely. Would someone kindly comment on this a bit further? Thanks!
The author is just referring to the expectation about the nature of the speech that follows one declaration or the other. In real Spanish you have the short answer ("Un general.") or the long answer that uses to mimic the verb within the question, that is "Fue un general que..."

Quote:
Originally Posted by laepelba View Post
  • When talking about the use of ser vs. estar + adjective or participle changing the meaning of the sentence, I don't see "sentado" on any of the lists. Doesn't "ser + sentado" mean "sensible" and estar + sentado" mean "to be seated"?
I don't know "ser sentado" with that exact meaning. It could be "ser sensato" (to have good sense) or "ser sentado" (dated: to be thoughtful, wise). Your question involves the fact that sentado as an adjective is more than sentado as a participle. DRAE is a good guide as you won't find "abrazado" in it because as an adjective it gets the meaning from "abrazar", but when a past participle has gotten its own meanings, you will find it in DRAE, as it happens with "sentar" and "sentado".
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Last edited by aleCcowaN; March 21, 2011 at 04:40 AM.
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  #44  
Old March 20, 2011, 10:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chileno View Post
The use of "mi casa es aquí" is to relate immediately say, to the taxi driver, that you home is in this location. Just like you might say "it is here!" to tell the driver to stop.
Quote:
Originally Posted by laepelba View Post
Sorry, Chileno - I don't always follow your explanations. I feel here like I'm not getting any more information than what was in my original question. I don't understand why it's more correct to say to the driver "mi casa es aquí" than it would be to say "mi casa está aquí"....
The problem is that you are looking for correctness (is that a word?!)

I said only correct because i was agreeing with you, and told you that could use it like when you see the taxi driver is going to go past your home. If you ask at that moment the driver which one is your home we won't know, just it is somewhere very near. (that is with "es aquí") whereas, with "this is my house" the driver knows exactly which one. Does that make sense?

Wouldn't it be the same in English "it's here" and "this is my house/home"?


Quote:
Originally Posted by chileno View Post
Correct. You can use both to say the same thing, but generally you use "fue" to give a "short" answer.
Quote:
Originally Posted by laepelba View Post
I know, that's what the paragraph says. But could you expound on that a bit. I don't really exactly follow that......
The termination "aba" in a verb which I don't remember if it is the perfect or imperfect is used to tell tales, stories, generally... So when someones says, "it was a long day..." in Spanish can be just "fué un largo día" which could be used to start a story, but generally when you say "era un largo día..." you know that this is going to be a story for sure.


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Originally Posted by chileno View Post
Correct again, but consider the following:

Be seated at theater (instead of standing)

Be seated by your host.
Quote:
Originally Posted by laepelba View Post
Huh??
You mean to tell me that I don't have that in English either, or by now you are just shut to me?

Please explain.

Thanks.

Hernan.
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  #45  
Old March 21, 2011, 03:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aleCcowaN View Post
Ser is the only verbo sustantivo in Spanish, that is, it's the only verb that asserts about the subject what the object declares:

La leche es buena para los huesos.
Just a small point, but the substantive verb never has an object, just a complement in the same grammatical case as the subject.
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  #46  
Old March 21, 2011, 04:42 AM
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Originally Posted by Perikles View Post
Just a small point, but the substantive verb never has an object, just a complement in the same grammatical case as the subject.
Thank you. I guessed it was an O as in DO -in Spanish, CD-
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  #47  
Old March 21, 2011, 04:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chileno View Post
The problem is that you are looking for correctness (is that a word?!)

I said only correct because i was agreeing with you, and told you that could use it like when you see the taxi driver is going to go past your home. If you ask at that moment the driver which one is your home we won't know, just it is somewhere very near. (that is with "es aquí") whereas, with "this is my house" the driver knows exactly which one. Does that make sense?

Wouldn't it be the same in English "it's here" and "this is my house/home"?
I most definitely look for correctness. Just like I seek to speak English more correctly every day. I don't see that as a *problem*.

I'm not sure that you were agreeing with *me*, but with the person who I was quoting. I was only quoting these authors when asking these questions because I don't UNDERSTAND what they've said. So I quote an author and then say "I don't understand this quote" and then I'm told that the quote is correct.

I just don't understand WHY "mi casa es aquí" is better than "mi casa está aquí".

Quote:
Originally Posted by chileno View Post
The termination "aba" in a verb which I don't remember if it is the perfect or imperfect is used to tell tales, stories, generally... So when someones says, "it was a long day..." in Spanish can be just "fué un largo día" which could be used to start a story, but generally when you say "era un largo día..." you know that this is going to be a story for sure.
Okay - that makes sense....

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Originally Posted by chileno View Post
You mean to tell me that I don't have that in English either, or by now you are just shut to me?

Please explain.
Neither. I have no idea what your getting at with those two sentences. You say "consider the following...", and I agree that those two sentences are English sentences using the word "seated", but have no idea what they have to do with my original question.
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  #48  
Old March 21, 2011, 07:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by laepelba View Post
I most definitely look for correctness. Just like I seek to speak English more correctly every day. I don't see that as a *problem*.

I'm not sure that you were agreeing with *me*, but with the person who I was quoting. I was only quoting these authors when asking these questions because I don't UNDERSTAND what they've said. So I quote an author and then say "I don't understand this quote" and then I'm told that the quote is correct.

I just don't understand WHY "mi casa es aquí" is better than "mi casa está aquí".
"mi casa es aquí" is not better than saying "mi casa está aquí"

The first one states a somewhat general location of the home, but the second states it exactly where it is actually.

The last two sentences about "seated" will have to wait.
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  #49  
Old August 29, 2011, 03:38 AM
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Tell me - you use "estar" with "muerto", but you use "ser" with "calvo", right? "Está muerto ese hombre." "Es calvo ese hombre." Right?

Setting aside any possible jokes that can be made here ... it has made sense to me that death is the end of a process, thus the use of "estar". But isn't baldness the end of a process in the same way, too?
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  #50  
Old August 29, 2011, 06:26 AM
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Ser calvo is a definitive characteristic.
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