Ask a Question

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


Por Vs Durante

 

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
  #1  
Old April 28, 2020, 02:10 AM
fglorca fglorca is offline
Emerald
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 583
fglorca is on a distinguished road
Por Vs Durante

When do we use ‘por’, when do we use ‘durante’, and when can we omit the preposition altogether? Some textbooks tell me they are always interchangeable, but I don’t agree.
Some examples:

I think ‘durante’ and the omission of the preposition are grammatically fine here, but I’m not sure of the word order of the second one in each case:

• Estuve en Madrid durante dos meses.
• Estuve durante dos meses en Madrid.

• Estuve en Madrid dos meses.
• Estuve dos meses en Madrid.

Could we use ‘por’ here? I don’t think we can, but I don’t know the rule:
• Estuve en Madrid por dos meses.
• Estuve por dos meses en Madrid.

Similar pairs of examples:

• Trabajaré en Sevilla durante quince días.
• Trabajaré durante quince días en Sevilla.

• Trabajaré en Sevilla quince días.
• Trabajaré quince días en Sevilla.

• Trabajaré en Sevilla por quince días.
• Trabajaré por quince días en Sevilla.

Different examples below in that I don’t think we can use ‘durante’, and I don’t think we can omit ‘por’. However, my main issue is that I don’t know a specific reason as to why.

• Me invitó a su casa durante un mes.
• Me invitó durante un mes a su casa.

• Me invitó a su casa un mes.
• Me invitó un mes a su casa.

• Me invitó a su casa por un mes.
• Me invitó por un mes a su casa.

Any help with this, specifically a concrete rule, would be hugely appreciated.
Reply With Quote
   
Get rid of these ads by registering for a free Tomísimo account.
  #2  
Old April 28, 2020, 03:52 PM
poli's Avatar
poli poli is offline
rule 1: gravity
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: In and around New York
Posts: 7,725
Native Language: English
poli will become famous soon enoughpoli will become famous soon enough
I don't think the word order in the case of estuve en Madrid dos meses/ estuve dos meses en Madrid. Here's why: Substitute the verb pasar (I believe would be a more common usage) for estar and you will note that they are both OK.

Also durante and por seem very interchangeable in the cases you quote, but durante can be used for other things that diverge from por. Example: Durante el mes de junio las noches son breves.
__________________
Me ayuda si corrige mis errores. Gracias.
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old April 29, 2020, 09:30 PM
AngelicaDeAlquezar's Avatar
AngelicaDeAlquezar AngelicaDeAlquezar is offline
Obsidiana
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Mexico City
Posts: 8,822
Native Language: Mexican Spanish
AngelicaDeAlquezar is on a distinguished road
I agree with Poli. The word order makes no difference. A speaker may prefer one or the other, depending on what they have in mind at the moment.
This is not a rule and the speaker may not be conscious of it, but normally if you say first "en Madrid", you prefer to stress the place, and if you say first "(durante/por) dos meses", the time you spent there is more important.
We also take into account how the sentence sounds in our ears, so we choose as we like better.


As for "por" and "durante" being interchangeable... hmm... I'd like to complicate things a little.

1) Let me be a little evil here: in the dictionary, "por" is not associated with any notion of time, except an unrelated one, to talk about an approximate date:
– Juan me va a pagar el dinero por junio. -> Juan will pay me back the money by June.
– Creo que la última vez que nos vimos fue por Navidad. -> I think the last time we met it was around Christmas.
But don't worry! You may still say "trabajé en Madrid durante dos meses" and "trabajé en Madrid por dos meses", with exactly the same meaning, and everyone understands. Because of the influence of English, most native speakers will find natural the sentence with "por". In this context, both prepositions are perfectly interchangeable.

2) When you have a verb like "estar", which already expresses some notion of duration, some of us might prefer no preposition:
- Estuve en Madrid dos meses.
You may perfectly say "estuve en Madrid durante dos meses" or "estuve en Madrid por dos meses; it's not wrong at all. Some of us, pedantic ones, would rather omit the preposition.
- Permaneció inmóvil varios minutos.



I'll add a little nuance here: if you don't have a specific unit of time, we will want "durante":
- Estuve allá durante la guerra.
- Estuvimos en casa durante la primavera.
In these cases, we don't use "por", because in that case, the preposition introduces the cause why people have been in some place, rather than the period of time they have been there.


3) Finally, "durante" implies simultaneity. For example, you are in a place while the period of time occurs. So, we'd rather not use "durante" with a verb like "invitar", because you can't invite someone for a loooong period of time; that's an action that happens only once:
- Me invitó a su casa un mes.
- Me invitó a estar (durante/por) un mes en su casa.
- Me invitó a pasar un mes en su casa.
- Me invitó a quedarme (durante/por) un mes en su casa.

I think "me invitó a su casa por un mes" is alright, because the notion of "por" is immediately associated to the time expressed in the sentence rather than the nature of the verb, but I would definitely not use "durante" here for the reason I told before.
__________________
Ain't it wonderful to be alive when the Rock'n'Roll plays...
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old May 01, 2020, 02:37 AM
fglorca fglorca is offline
Emerald
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 583
fglorca is on a distinguished road
Many thanks, guys, really appreciate all your help.
Just one final question:

Estuve allí por dos horas.

I have heard once before that we can't use 'por' with 'hours', that is grammatically incorrect (even though 'durante' or no preposition at all is preferred here).
Is this true?
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old May 01, 2020, 12:59 PM
AngelicaDeAlquezar's Avatar
AngelicaDeAlquezar AngelicaDeAlquezar is offline
Obsidiana
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Mexico City
Posts: 8,822
Native Language: Mexican Spanish
AngelicaDeAlquezar is on a distinguished road
"Por" here is alright. As I said, only if you stick to the dictionary, you will have a problem with it. But most native speakers are already familiar with this use of "por" and might even find "durante" a little pompous.


- Por la cuarentena veo la tele (por/durante) horas y horas.
- Ponga la masa en el congelador (por/durante) una hora.
- El perro estuvo dormido al sol (por/durante) horas.
- No es bueno trabajar frente a la computadora (por/durante) ocho horas seguidas.
- Si no puedes dormir (por/durante) 20 minutos, tómate un té caliente.
__________________
Ain't it wonderful to be alive when the Rock'n'Roll plays...
Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
por, por vs durante

 

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
La feria durante Josh Vocabulary 3 October 09, 2013 07:09 PM
Durante esos años/siglos gramatica Grammar 4 May 25, 2010 06:45 AM
¿Qué hiciste durante las vacaciones? Jessica Practice & Homework 17 January 20, 2009 03:10 PM
España durante el verano malin Culture 23 October 24, 2008 05:36 PM


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 06:56 AM.

Forum powered by vBulletin® Copyright ©2000 - 2022, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

X