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I came across a comment on Facebook that went like this:

Mira te presumo mis dientes de marfil.

According to Google the sentence translates as:

I think my teeth look like ivory.

Although I know presumir means to presume, dientes means teeth, and marfil means ivory, I am still having a hard time understanding the syntax. Why does the sentence start with mirar? And shouldn't we have como instead of de? Another thing, what's the te there for when the sentence has nobody in the second person?

  • Without the context of the sentence, none of your questions can be answered easily. To everyone except you this is just a random sentence; horribly translated by a robot. – dockeryZ Dec 1 '14 at 4:05
  • The context is that of a woman talking about her pearly white teeth. The original Spanish sentence is what she wrote. The English translation is from Google Translate. – TheLearner Dec 1 '14 at 4:08
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    There is a writing problem that difficult to understand the sentence. The expression "mira" here is used as an phatic interjection, a warning. The right thing would Mira, te presumo mis dientes de perfil, separated by comma or dot. – Rodrigo Dec 1 '14 at 12:07
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Mira te presumo mis dientes de marfil

This sentence translates to something along this lines of

And now, without further ado, I present to you my ivory teeth

or

Hey! Check out my ivory teeth!

The use of presumir in this sentence is used to express vanity...

  1. intr. Dicho de una persona: Cuidar mucho su arreglo para parecer atractiva. http://lema.rae.es/drae/srv/search?id=hjrhXgxCHDXX2nXPJtbi

So really, it is like literally saying

Look, I am showing off my ivory teeth to you

  • So, would you say the "mira" here is an imperative? – TheLearner Dec 1 '14 at 4:10
  • Yes. Mira is idenpendent of te presumo. – dockeryZ Dec 1 '14 at 4:12
  • Also, isn't "presumir" the Spanish for "to presume"? How can it translate as "to present"? – TheLearner Dec 1 '14 at 4:14
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    And in fact, that's exactly what the DPD says: "2. En el español mexicano presumir se usa también como transitivo con el sentido de ‘mostrar [algo o a alguien] con orgullo o presunción’: «Decidió visitarlo lo más pronto posible, pues quería presumirle su incipiente bigote» (Esquivel Deseo [Méx. 2001])." The D.AA. lists the usage as not just Mexican, but also Guatamalan, Nicaraugan, Ecuatorian, Peruvian, Bolivian, Paraguayan, and Argentine." – user0721090601 Dec 1 '14 at 4:21
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    Also, as guifa says, it's used in latin-america. That sentence would make absolutely no sense in Spain. – Daniel Dec 1 '14 at 18:22
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Mira te presumo mis dientes de marfil. is grammatically incorrect and makes no sense in Spanish. It's either a typo and the person meant to write 'presento' or he doesn't know howo to use the verb 'presumir'

A correct sentence using 'presumir de' would be: 'Presumo de dientes de marfil', which means 'I boast of having white-ivory teeth'.

If he wanted to use the verb 'presento', as in 'Mira, te presento mis dientes de marfil' the sentence would mean 'Look, meet my white-ivory teeth'

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    The question wasn't about grammatical correctness. The OP saw this on Facebook, a discourse community. English has internet slang as well, Idk, I wanna, For the win, et cetera. – dockeryZ Dec 1 '14 at 18:12
  • I wrote my answer from a Spanish point of view. That sentence does not exist here, in Spain. It isn't used in normal street language, and it isn't used as internet slang by Spanish people. I just read the above comment of it being used in Latin America, which I didn't know, as I don't speak latin-american Spanish ;) – Daniel Dec 1 '14 at 18:21

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