Ask a Question

(Create a thread)
Go Back   Spanish language learning forums > Spanish & English Languages > Grammar


Reflexive verbs that admit impersonal reflexive construction

 

This is the place for questions about conjugations, verb tenses, adverbs, adjectives, word order, syntax and other grammar questions for English or Spanish.


Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #11  
Old September 21, 2012, 07:42 PM
AngelicaDeAlquezar's Avatar
AngelicaDeAlquezar AngelicaDeAlquezar is offline
Obsidiana
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Mexico City
Posts: 8,314
Native Language: Mexican Spanish
AngelicaDeAlquezar is on a distinguished road
I don't have a better answer, so I'll agree that some pronominals are used to either intensify or emphasize an action.


I'm not sure of how I would translate the nuances here, but maybe some more examples would help...

·El albañil cayó del tercer piso. -> An objective description of the fall.
·El albañil se cayó del tercer piso. -> Underlining it was nobody's fault, but something beyond anyone's control.

·Cada año vamos a la playa. -> Telling about a custom.
·Cada año nos vamos a la playa. -> Underlining the fact that we leave everything behind.

·Comió toda la sopa. -> Simple fact.
·Se comió toda la sopa. -> Emphasis on someone's eating it all up.

·El abuelo murió en su casa. -> Telling what happened.
·El abuelo se murió en su casa. -> No one could have done something about it.
__________________
Ain't it wonderful to be alive when the Rock'n'Roll plays...
Reply With Quote
   
Get rid of these ads by registering for a free Tomísimo account.
  #12  
Old September 21, 2012, 08:44 PM
Glen Glen is offline
Emerald
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: USA
Posts: 710
Native Language: English
Glen is on a distinguished road
Thanks again! This whole business is to me just another example of how much more expressive is Spanish than English. The subtleties, the nuances, all endlessly fascinating to these anglo ears.
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old September 22, 2012, 10:42 AM
JSK JSK is offline
Opal
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 17
JSK is on a distinguished road
Quote:
Originally Posted by Coffee Kitten View Post
The Spanish grammar textbook that I'm using says:

Some reflexive verbs admit the impersonal reflexive construction and take, therefore, an indirect object (e.g. Se le olvidó la carta.)

What does this rule mean?
I personally find that your book is throwing in two different things here. The rule about some verbs being ambigous and therefore require (not admit...) the impersonal construction is one thing.
But the example sentence you offered adresses another function of Se you yourself already guessed before:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Coffee Kitten View Post
Hmm... I think I got the use of "se" in "se me olvidó el pasaporte;" basically, it's blaming the passport for forgetting to be with me (or something like that).
Our book calls this phenomenom of the Spanish language Involutariedad.

Se me ha estropeado el ordenador/la computadora -> I broke my computer.
Se me ha quemado el erroz -> I burnt the rice.

Se indicates that the actions took place involuntarily (from the point of view of the speaker) and the personal pronoun me indicates the affected person(s), in your case he/she -> le.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Coffee Kitten View Post
How do I know when I should use this rule?
I'm not sure which rule you mean because, as I said, I think that you're talking about two rules at the same time (like Angelica pointed at as well). But I'd personally recommend you to use se if you want to indicate "involuntarity"*. That would explain why in your


Quote:
Originally Posted by Coffee Kitten View Post
* Se nos olvidó decirte. We forgot to tell you.
* Se le olvidó la carta. He forgot the letter.

the se occurs. To forget sth. can happen involuntarily and to clarify this exact connotation we use se.
What confuses me now is your Se les figura que son ricos.
I'm not a native so I can not tell whether this sentence feels right or not, or sth. like that. In this case I'd definately listen to what alecCowan said he's a native so he for sure can tell. Although all I can offer is my lousy book-strategy-mathematics-logic-knowledge from years of grammar classes and lessons, I have to agree to him, though... the only version that is acceptable is se los figuran ricos in a reflexive or reciprocal way of meaning. In order to eliminate this ambiguity you could use the impersonal construction se figura rico a los (but that sounds weird to me)to indicate that other persons imagine them being rich.


That they are rich is imagined by them. -> Se los figuran ricos
En mi opinion es imposible esa traducción porque la estructura de la Pasiva Refleja es
se
+ verbo transitivo en 3a persona (sing. o plural) + sujeto.

Your sentence is missing the subject that is required from the Spanish passive.
I'm not sure whether an adequate translation would be se figuran que son ricos (son = ellos = sujeto). I will ask one of my profs about this thing, I'm curious what he says. :>



*better translation needed urgently...!
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old September 25, 2012, 09:36 PM
Coffee Kitten's Avatar
Coffee Kitten Coffee Kitten is offline
Ruby
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Philippines
Posts: 44
Native Language: Filipino
Coffee Kitten is on a distinguished road
Quote:
Originally Posted by JSK View Post
Our book calls this phenomenom of the Spanish language Involutariedad.

Se me ha estropeado el ordenador/la computadora -> I broke my computer.
Se me ha quemado el erroz -> I burnt the rice.

Se indicates that the actions took place involuntarily (from the point of view of the speaker) and the personal pronoun me indicates the affected person(s), in your case he/she -> le.
Great explanation! It addresses my confusion very well. Thanks!
__________________
What greater gift than the love of a cat? ~Charles Dickens
Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmark this thread at:

Tags
accidental se, impersonal se, passive voice, pronomial verbs, reflexive

 

Link to this thread
URL: 
HTML Link: 
BB Code: 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts
BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Site Rules

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Reflexive verbs Eseny Grammar 4 August 17, 2011 08:05 PM
Reflexive verbs questions bricks Translations 9 April 25, 2010 06:25 PM
Reflexive verbs Johntan Grammar 6 February 09, 2010 04:25 AM
Reflexive Verbs DeterminadoAprender Grammar 7 November 20, 2008 08:03 PM
Reflexive verbs WMX Grammar 3 September 07, 2007 10:11 AM


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 11:08 PM.

Forum powered by vBulletin® Copyright ©2000 - 2019, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

X