Questions about verb tenses or modes: indicative, _subjuntivo_, imperative, etc. Preguntas acerca de modos o tiempos verbales: indicativo, subjuntivo, condicional, imperativo, etc.

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2
votes
2answers
274 views

Duda pretérito perfecto e imperfecto

Estoy corrigiendo un texto sobre una película, tratando de ayudar a un amigo que está aprendiendo español, y tengo una duda sobre el uso del pretérito perfecto e imperfecto. Cuantas más vueltas le doy,...
7
votes
3answers
861 views

¿Por qué se usa la forma “tú” en publicidades en vez de “usted”?

Muchas veces he encontrado publicidades que usan la forma tú como lo siguiente: Yo pienso que que estaría mejor usar la forma usted, porque es mas formal y profesional (en mi opinión). ¿Quizás no ...
1
vote
1answer
83 views

Preterite vs Imperfect of quedar

Pablo Neruda, nacido en Chile in 1904, estuvo en contacto directo con la naturaleza desde su infancia, sentimiento que quedó reflejado en su obra. Why can't quedaba be used in place of quedó?
1
vote
1answer
90 views

Preterite vs Imperfect with Poder

Entonces, decidimos llamar por teléfono a un amigo que, afortunadamente, estaba en casa, por lo que pudo venir a recogernos. Why use the preterite instead of imperfect? Isn't the ability to do ...
1
vote
1answer
380 views

Preterite vs imperfect with haber

Cuando salimos de la estación, no había ningún taxi. Why use the imperfect instead of preterite? can't the times there wasn't a taxi be counted?
13
votes
4answers
196 views

Is there any subtle difference between the two forms of the imperfect subjuntive?

The imperfect subjuntive has two forms. For example: Ojalá viniera. Ojalá viniese. I think both has the same meaning. However, is there any subtle difference?
4
votes
4answers
250 views

What am I doing when I use the subjunctive?

If we limit our view to the present tense, how can I fill in the blanks succinctly? When I use the indicative mood, I am indicating that something happens. When I use the subjunctive mood, ...
3
votes
3answers
535 views

Simple preterit and imperfect preterit connotations of “saber”

I need some refreshing on the differences between preterit and imperfect preterit tenses of the verb saber. I understand the following connotations: saber -- To know (or to taste) sé, sabes, sabe --...
6
votes
1answer
14k views

When should the subjunctive be used after “mientras”?

When should mientras or mientras que be followed by the subjunctive and when by the indicative? In both cases, how is mientras usually translated?
2
votes
2answers
406 views

Cuando alguien tenga, llegue, corra, etc… ¿que tiempo verbal es?

Me interesa saber como se llama al tiempo verbal en las frases: Cuando alguien llega. Cuando alguien tenga. Cuando alguien corra.
5
votes
1answer
2k views

Does indirect speech in Spanish require changes in tense, mood, etc?

In German you have to use different moods, in English different tenses for verbs to mark indirect speech (speech where you are saying what was said or expressed): He said that he had painted the ...
6
votes
2answers
867 views

¿Es válido decir “eso pasó ahorita”?

En Medellín (Colombia) se dice mucho "eso pasó ahorita", pero parecería ser que "ahora" o "ahorita" es más de futuro. Ejemplo: Ellos vienen ahora. o Ellos llegaron ahorita. No suena bien.
4
votes
1answer
295 views

Second person singluar imperative of a reflexive verb ending in a diphthong

The question is pretty much in the title. If I have the verb lavarse, I know to make the imperative I use lávate. But what to do with a verb like afeitarse? Is it afeitate? My spellcheck thinks not....
4
votes
2answers
320 views

“Something happened” while “something else was going on”

¿Cuál es correcto? No ví nada mientras estaba corriendo. o No ví nada mientras corrí. ¿Ambos son incorrectos? Lo siento por el título.
23
votes
1answer
6k views

Preterit of ser and ir

Español Pretérito de ser: fui, fuiste, fue, fuimos, fuisteis, fueron Pretérito de ir: fui, fuiste, fue, fuimos, fuisteis, fueron ¿Cómo han evolucionado los verbos "ser" e "ir" para tener ...
2
votes
1answer
228 views

Should I use preterit or imperfect to express something that used to happen repeatedly?

For example, if I wanted to say "They used to travel every day", which would I use: Ellos viajaron cada día. Ellos viajaban cada día.
10
votes
3answers
728 views

“De donde fue” instead of “De donde estaba”

In Nicaragua, addresses are usually given as directions from a landmark, for example: From the stadium, go 5 blocks south, then 3 blocks east Sometimes the landmark is a place that used to be ...
8
votes
3answers
884 views

Words that mean different things in the preterite

There are some verbs that seem to have quite distinct meanings in the preterite tense. I don't know whether they also seem to change meanings to native speakers or if it just seems completely natural ...
2
votes
1answer
379 views

Translating “wait until” or “wait for”

How do you translate phrases involving wait until or wait for: Wait until I call you before you leave for the restaurant. Wait for me to come home before you buy the tickets. You should ...
1
vote
1answer
1k views

Translating “how is …?” and “how was …?”

What are the options for translating the phrase "how is" or "how was," as in: How's the steak? How is your day so far? How is the traffic today? and How was your vacation? How was the meeting? ...
3
votes
2answers
393 views

What is the difference between parece and pareciera?

What is the difference between parece que and pareciera que? How are both normally translated? What tenses can be used after pareciera que, and in general how is pareciera used?
2
votes
2answers
1k views

Spanish names for preterite and imperfect tenses

In school, I learned that the Spanish past tenses were called preterite and imperfect in English, and preterito and imperfecto in Spanish. However, in talking to native speakers I've run across other ...
7
votes
1answer
1k views

“Te va (a) encantar” - is “a” necessary?

Is the "a" necessary when using "ir a" to convey future meaning? Google gives 17m results for "te va a encantar" but also 1.5m for "te va encantar". Does this rule vary according to formality?
7
votes
2answers
1k views

Why does the preterite of “traducir” transform into “tradujo”?

As you will see below the preterite suffers from an odd transformation. Even native speakers make the mistake of conjugating the preterite of traducir wrong. For instance instead of traduje they ...
2
votes
1answer
837 views

Indicative vs. subjunctive in “no importa qué dice el destino”

If I'm hearing it correctly, there's a line in Carlos Baute's "Colgando En Tus Manos" that says: No importa qué dice el destino. I thought that sentence should be expressed: No importa qué ...
5
votes
3answers
359 views

What is the imperative without pronoun of 'Saber'? Why?

Okay so I suddenly have no idea how to say the imperative of saber. This was my reasoning until arriving to a comical dead end: Ir = Ve Comer = Come Ser = Sé Saber = Se? Sabé? Sepe!...
5
votes
1answer
1k views

When should you use the preterite or the imperfect to express past time?

There are two ways to express simple past time actions and conditions in Spanish. One is the preterite, Comí tacos. (I ate tacos.) Besé a una chica. (I kissed a girl.) and the other is the ...