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Speaking from an intuitive point of view, the first one: sabía, sabías, sabía... is roughly equivalent to the English 'I used to know', an example sentence would be: Yo sabía hablar español (I used to know how to speak Spanish). Here you knew something but maybe forgot due to lack of practice. The second one: supe, supiste, supo means 'I ...


1

The first thing to say is that there is no one-to-one correspondence between the tense/aspect/mood of Spanish and English verbs. Whereas English has only one simple past, Spanish has two: pretérito simple and pretérito imperfecto. In general, one can translate both the pretérito simple and pretérito imperfecto into simple past. In many cases the context is ...



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