<<

. 5
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>>

Level 2
´
2.1 More features of the use of the gerund (Mas detalles sobre el uso del gerundio)


2.1 More features of the use of the gerund
i In clauses where it could be dif¬cult to ascertain which of several pronouns is the
subject of the gerund, the appropriate personal pronoun is inserted immediately
after the gerund. Compare the two following sentences:

Me la encontr´ regresando yo del teatro
e I met her coming back (when I came back)
from the theater
Me la encontr´ regresando del teatro
e I met her coming back (when she came
back) . . .
Further examples
Ten´a miedo de que mi hermano, no estando yo
± I was frightened that my brother, if I were
presente, cometiera un disparate not present, would do something stupid
Veo a los ni˜ os jugando en el jard´n
n ± I see the children playing in the yard/garden
Hall´ (M) a mi hermana escribiendo una carta
e I found my sister writing a letter
Aqu´ tengo su tarjeta anunciando su boda
± I™ve gotten their card announcing the
wedding

ii The gerund also serves to describe the action of a verb it accompanies:

Los chicos ven´an/vinieron corriendo
± The children came running up
El camino iba bajando al mar The path went (on) down to the sea
Continu´/Sigui´ hablando
o o He went on talking
Pas´ la noche trabajando
e I spent the night working

Note. In many cases, Spanish uses the in¬nitive which is governed by a preposition, and
not the gerund as in English:

No soy capaz de distinguir entre estos colores I am not capable of distinguishing between
these colors
No tardar´ en venir
a She™ll not be long in coming
La di¬cultad consiste en encontrarlo en casa The dif¬culty consists in ¬nding him at
home
Despu´s de comer, salimos a la terraza
e After eating, we went out onto the terrace
Antes de ir a la estaci´n . . .
o Before going to the station . . .

78
10 Progressive tense or gerund



iii After verbs of seeing and hearing, the in¬nitive is more usual than the gerund:

La vimos bailar We saw her dance (dancing)
Los vi venir I saw them come (coming)
La o´mos tocar el piano
± We heard her play(ing) the piano

iv Note the difference below between the gerund when preceded by the preterit
and the gerund when preceded by the imperfect. In the ¬rst case, the event is
terminated, while continuity is suggested in the second.

Ejemplos
Mar´a estuvo trabajando all´ dos a˜ os
± ± n Mary was working there for two years
Estaba trabajando all´ cuando la conoc´
± ± She was working there when I met her
Estuvimos lavando la ropa todo el d´a± We were washing clothes all day
Est´ bamos lavando la ropa cuando lleg´ . . .
a o We were washing clothes when . . . arrived
Federico estuvo viajando tres meses Frederic was traveling for three months
Estaba viajando un mes cuando . . . He had been traveling a month when . . .


Exercises Level 2
i Escribe frases completas como en el ejemplo, usando el tiempo progresivo y el
preterito
´

Ejemplo
Muchacho limpiar casa cuando entrar hermana > El muchacho estaba limpiando la
casa cuando entr´ su hermana
o
a M´ sico tocar guitarra cuando resbalar sobre un pl´ tano
u a
b Mi padre dormir cuando empezar llorar beb´ e
c Familia cenar cuando sonar tel´ fono
e
d Carmen telefonear al momento que yo querer mandar un e-mail
e Carlos limpiar su rec´ mara (M) / habitaci´ n mientras yo jugar jard´n
a o ±
f Todo el grupo bailar cuando la violinista empezar toser
g El mesero servir desayuno cuando romper copa
h El chofer (M) / ch´ fer preguntar direcci´ n cuando llegar la polic´a
o o ±

ii Ordena los vocablos de las siguientes frases con un poco de logica y cambia los
´
in¬nitivos al indicativo o gerundio donde sea necesario.

Ejemplo
colina subir la muchacho correr el > El muchacho subi´ la colina corriendo
o
a correr venir estudiantes tarde ser porque las
b cantar calles las tunas ir por las
c sal´ n llorar prima mi el entrar en
o
d la comentar amigos seguir pol´tica los
±
e pasar alumno d´a todo estudiar el el
±
f cocina a volver cojear ella la
g r´o cruzar nadar el el poeta Byron
±
h atravesar la correr calle el perro

79
A STUDENT GRAMMAR OF SPANISH




iii Elige el imperfecto progresivo o el preterito progresivo como en los ejemplos.
´
Cambia el in¬nitivo al indicativo donde sea necesario.

Ejemplos
>
Ana (estar) estudiando toda la tarde Ana estuvo estudiando . . .
>
Pedro (estar) cortando le˜ a cuando (hacerse)
n Pedro estaba cortando le˜ a cuando
n
da˜ o en el dedo
n se hizo da˜ o en el dedo
n
a La madre (estar) lavando los platos hasta la una
b Los j´ venes (estar) bailando hasta las doce
o
c El ¬nanciero (estar) vendiendo acciones cuatro meses
d Yo (estar) manejando (M) tranquilamente cuando se me revent´ una rueda
o
e Rosa (estar) guisando cuando entr´ su hija
o
f Nosotros (estar) comiendo cuando son´ el timbre
o
g Los pandilleros (M) / gamberros (estar) rompiendo los cristales cuando lleg´ la
o
polic´a
±
h Ellas (estar) dando un paseo cuando empez´ a llover
o
i Yo (estar) leyendo toda la tarde sin interrupci´ n
o
j El vecino (estar) cavando toda la semana en el jard´n
±
iv Actividad para toda la clase
La clase elige a uno de sus miembros. Esta persona se pone delante de la clase y hace la
m´mica (mimes), haciendo gestos que pueden ser exagerados. Hace gestos con las manos,
±
los pies y el cuerpo entero. Hace hasta muecas (grimaces). Al hacer estos gestos, la persona,
ya convertida en actor/actriz, le pregunta a la clase:
¿Qu´ estoy haciendo?
e
La clase contesta seg´ n el gesto / los gestos. Por ejemplo:
u
Est´ s golpeando la pared o
a
Est´ s tirando de la nariz o
a
Est´ s doblando los dedos o
a
Est´ s mirando por la ventana
a
Si no es correcta la respuesta, el actor / la actriz puede decir, por ejemplo:
No, estoy pein´ ndome (I™m combing my hair)
a
Si no r´en (M) / re´s durante esta escena, no reir´ n (M) / reir´ is nunca
± ± a e




80
Unit 11 (Unidad 11)
The imperative mood (El modo
imperativo)


Level 1
1.1 Forms of the imperative (El imperativo)
1.2 How to soften the possible aggressive nature of the imperative
(Como suavizar la posible agresividad del imperativo)


1.1 Forms of the imperative
The imperative in Spanish conveys the idea of direct orders or commands: ¡Habla! =
Speak!, ¡Come! = Eat!, ¡Abre! = Open! are the imperative forms of the verbs hablar, comer
and abrir. This form corresponds to the second person singular form of the verb (t´ ).u
There also exists a second person plural. The imperative forms of the three model verbs
are as follows:

Singular Plural
comprar ¡Compra! ¡Comprad!
Buy! Buy!
vender ¡Vende! ¡Vended!
Sell! Sell!
abrir ¡Abre! ¡Abrid!
Open! Open!

Examples
¡Compra pan! = Buy bread! ¡Vende la casa! = Sell the house!
¡Abre la puerta! = Open the door!
¡Corred! = Run! ¡Leed! = Read!
Four essential remarks must be made here.
i The ¬rst is that the second person plural imperative form corresponding to vosotros
is rarely used, and it could be argued from the author™s long experience that it is
rapidly disappearing. It sounds odd, awkward and associated with very formal
language. One has the suspicion that young Spanish speakers no longer learn it at
school. The present author has only ever heard ¡Salid! on one occasion in countless
years of living in Spain. Furthermore, in Spanish America, it does not exist. Mexicans
regard it as archaic, and an object of fun or even derision. They replace it completely
by the Uds. form. (See level 2.)

ii The second remark is that the negative forms of the imperative, both singular and
plural, are really taken from the subjunctive. These negative or subjunctive forms will
be treated in level 2.


81
A STUDENT GRAMMAR OF SPANISH




iii Thirdly, the imperative forms may seem too sharp or aggressive to many Spanish
speakers, with the result that other forms of order or request are often resorted to.
(See below, level 1.2.)
iv Fourthly, the polite Ud. and Uds. forms are also derived from the subjunctive (see the
subjunctive, unit 16). Hence:

Singular Plural
comprar ¡Compre pan! Buy bread! ¡Compren pan! Buy bread!
vender ¡Venda la casa! Sell the house! ¡Vendan la casa! Sell the house!
abrir ¡Abra la puerta! Open the door! ¡Abran la puerta! Open the door!
The question of whether you would use the Ud. form of the imperative could lead to
much debate. You would need to know a person quite well to issue orders, and knowing
a person well would doubtless exclude the use of the Ud. form. The singular form Ud.
has no exercises for this very reason. You should merely be able to recognize it. The
plural form Uds. has exercises because, as seen below, it replaces the vosotros form in
Mexico.
A number of irregular verbs have only an abbreviated form for the imperative cor-
responding to t´ . Their second person plural form is regular, and, of course, becoming
u
archaic:
Singular Plural
decir ¡Di! ¡Decid! Say!
hacer ¡Haz! ¡Haced! Do/make!
ir ¡Ve! ¡Id! Go!
poner ¡Pon! ¡Poned! Put!
salir ¡Sal! ¡Salid! Go out!
tener ¡Ten! ¡Tened! Have!
venir ¡Ven! ¡Venid! Come!
The plural forms above need merely to be recognized, for they are not used these days.
But, how does a person addressing a group of children, students or pupils to whom (s)he
would normally use the vosotros form, give an order? Certainly not, for example, ¡Salid!
or ¡Hablad! The teacher would resort to a subterfuge like Salimos or ¡Salgamos!
The Ud. and Uds. forms of the irregular verbs above are as follows:
¡Diga!/¡Digan! “ ¡Haga!/¡Hagan! “ ¡Vaya!/¡Vayan! “ ¡Ponga!/¡Pongan! “ ¡Salga!/¡Salgan! “
¡Tenga!/¡Tengan! “ ¡Venga!/¡Vengan!


1.2 How to soften the possible aggressive nature
of the imperative
As mentioned above, the possible aggressive character of the imperative is often mitigated
by a gentler form of speech. The in¬nitive is often used in speech and, sometimes, in
commercial labelling:
´
Llamarme esta tarde (instead of Llamame . . .) Call me this afternoon
Escribirme cuando puedas (instead of Write to me when you can
Escr´beme . . .)
±


82
11 The imperative mood



Mandarnos la factura ahora (instead of Send us the bill now
´
Mandenos . . .)
No dec´rselo (instead of No se lo digas)
± Don™t tell her/him
Mantenerse fuera del alcance de los ni˜ os (on a
n Keep out of the reach of children
medicine bottle)
No fumar (instead of No fumen “ in a lift, for Don™t smoke; No smoking
instance)
Empujar (instead of Empuje(n) “ on a door) Push
Tirar (instead of Tire(n) “ on a door) Pull
Other ways of avoiding the imperative in common use:
Me lo env´as hoy
± Send it to me today (i.e. the indicative with
a slight rising intonation)
Me pone otra copa Please give me another wine glass (to a
waiter and with rising intonation)

Exercises Level 1
i Change the in¬nitive to the imperative, using tu, as in the example
´

Example
Mirar por la ventana > Mira por la ventana
a Vender estas ¬‚ores h Comer estos caramelos
b Ir ahora i Decir “Adi´ s” a tu hermano
o
c Comprar dos panes j Leer el peri´ dico
o
d Abrir la puerta k Venir esta tarde
e Preparar la comida l Hablar con la profesora
f Hacer tus deberes ahora m Poner tus libros en la mesa
g Salir antes de las cinco n Darle una silla a esta se˜ ora
n

ii Change the indicative to the imperative, using tu, as in the example
´
Discutes el precio > Discute el precio
Coges— estos papeles
a Compras la verdura g
b Rompes la caja h Tomas estos papeles
c Estacionas el carro (M) i Aguantas esta maleta
d Aparcas el coche j Abres este sobre
e Mandas la carta k Bebes este vino
f Vendes tu camioneta l Haces el planchado


* Not used this way in many Spanish American countries, including Mexico. It is con-
sidered indecent. It has the meaning of “to screw.” Oddly enough, the standard term in
Mexico and Spain, tirar = to throw/pull, also means “to screw” in Colombia. How to
replace in Mexico and Colombia? Tomar un cami´n / estos papeles = to catch a bus / these
o
papers. Echar una pelota = to throw a ball
iii Find a more courteous way of giving the following orders, as in the example
Poner la mesa > pones la mesa (por favor) (Spaniards do not seem to worry too much
about por favor whereas the use of please in England borders on the squeamish, at least for
Spanish speakers)

83
A STUDENT GRAMMAR OF SPANISH




a Escribir la carta f Darle la llave a tu madre
b Conducir el coche g Meter los cuchillos en el caj´ n
o
c Hablar con el cartero h Pagar la cuenta
d Echar la tarjeta al buz´ n
o i Leer en alta voz
e Poner las servilletas j Reservar boletos (M) de avi´ n
o

iv Class activity
Objective “ to practice the imperative mood
Method “ a class member is chosen to stand in front of the class and give orders in the
imperative. The class has to respond with actions.

Examples
Levanten los brazos (Everyone raises their arms “ at least we hope so!)
Cierren los ojos (Everyone closes their eyes)
Abran la boca (Open your mouth)
These are standard orders but someone among you must have more imagination than
the author. However, here are some verbs that can help you:
Quitar, amarrar las agujetas (M) / atar los cordones, poner un libro en el suelo, tocar,
empujar, tirar de, gritar, platicar (M) / hablar, leer, escribir, esconder un libro, salir de la
clase (only two or three, please), regresar, escuchar al profesor
Level 2
2.1 The Mexican use of the Uds. form of the imperative (El uso mexicano de la
forma Uds. del imperativo)
2.2 The ¬rst person plural of the imperative (La forma nosotros del imperativo)
2.3 The negative form of the imperative (La forma negativa del imperativo)
2.4 The imperative with pronouns (El imperativo con pronombres)
2.5 The negative imperative with pronouns (El imperativo negativo con
pronombres)



2.1 The Mexican use of the Uds. form of the
imperative
As noted above, the plural form vosotros does not exist in Mexico, as in other Spanish
American countries. Uds. replaces it. Thus, both to people unknown or to friends a
Mexican would say:

Escriban una carta “ Write a letter Manejen el carro “ Drive the car
Abran la ventana “ Open the window Hablen espa˜ ol “ Speak Spanish
n

Such usage sounds disconcerting to a Spaniard when it is regularly observed by a Mexican
towards a Spaniard whom the Mexican would know well. For a Spaniard, Uds. implies
persons you do not know, or hold in great respect or esteem. But, there you are. It is
a feature the present author has great dif¬culty in accommodating, at least from the
emotional point of view.


84
11 The imperative mood



2.2 The ¬rst person plural of the imperative
The imperative is also used, as in English, in the ¬rst person plural:
¡Hablemos franc´s!
e Let us speak French!
¡Corramos hasta la barrera! Let™s run to the gate!
¡Vivamos hasta los cien a˜ os!
n Let™s live till we are a hundred!
The subjunctive form is used here.



2.3 The negative form of the imperative
The negative form of the imperative, the negative subjunctive, requires particular atten-
tion. Here are the forms:
No hables Do not speak
No hable (Ud.) Do not speak
No hablemos Let us not speak
No habl´is (“Have fun” in Mexico)
e Do not speak
No hablen (“Have fun” in Spain) Do not speak

-er No comas/coma/comamos/com´ is/coman = Don™t, eat, etc.
a
Similarly:
-ir No abras/abra/abramos/abr´ is/abran = Don™t open, etc.
a
The importance of the knowledge of the subjunctive forms is highlighted here. As far as
this unit is concerned, it is useful to learn the negative forms of the subjunctive of some
irregular verbs:
No digas/diga/digamos/dig´ is/digan = Don™t say, etc.
decir: a
No hagas/haga/hagamos/hag´ is/hagan = Don™t do, etc.
hacer: a
—ir: No vayas/vaya/vayamos/vay´ is/vayan = Don™t go, etc.
a
No pongas/ponga/pongamos/pong´ is/pongan = Don™t put, etc.
poner: a
No salgas/salga/salgamos/salg´ is/salgan = Do not go out, etc.
salir: a
No tengas/tenga/tengamos/teng´ is/tengan = Do not have, etc.
tener: a
No vengas/venga/vengamos/veng´ is/vengan = Do not come, etc.
venir: a
* Vayamos is much less used than the straightforward indicative Vamos, as Mexicans,
or copycat cowboys, would say in Western ¬lms: ¡Vamos, muchachos! These are the
¬rst foreign words the present author learnt as a young child watching westerns. You are
never too young to start a foreign language.


2.4 The imperative with pronouns
i Pronouns are added to the imperative when the imperative is af¬rmative:

P´ game ma˜ ana = Pay me tomorrow
a n
´
Abrela en seguida = Open it straight away
D´melo = Tell me (it)
±



85
A STUDENT GRAMMAR OF SPANISH




D´jame trabajar = Let me work
e
Cu´date = Take care (of yourself )
±
D´ melas = Give them to me
a
Escr´bela = Write it
±
Escr´banles = Write to them
±

ii When the nos of the ¬rst person plural is added, the s of the imperative is dropped:

Sent´monos = Let™s sit down
e
V´ monos = Let™s go
a

In the above examples, note the written accent over the appropriate vowel to keep the
correct stress in the sound.
iii Similarly, when the pronoun os is added to a vosotros imperative the d is lost:

¡Sentaos y callaos! Sit down and keep quiet!
¡Lavaos! Wash yourselves!

Exceptionally, this is not the case with irse > idos (Go away).
Furthermore, in Mexico, as in all Spanish American countries, the question does not
arise: ¡Si´ntense y c´ llense!, ¡L´ vense! Speaking to small children, this would never be the case
e a a
in Spain.
However, in Spain, here also the in¬nitive is starting to creep in:
¡Sentaros y callaros! ¡Lavaros!
iv The negative in¬nitive which has the value of the negative imperative is commonly
used on notices, in commercials/adverts:

No pisar el c´sped
e Do not walk on the grass
No fumar en el ascensor Do not smoke in the elevator/lift
No derrochar energ´a
± Do not waste energy


2.5 The negative imperative with pronouns
i When pronouns are used with the subjunctive in its negative form, they precede the
verb:

¡No lo estropees! ¡No me digas!
Don™t damage it! You don™t say!
¡No lo hag´ is!
a ¡No la vendas!
Don™t do it! Don™t sell it!
¡No la abras! ¡No me hables!
Don™t open it! Don™t speak to me!
¡No la escriban! ¡No lo pongas all´!
±
Don™t write it! Don™t put it there!
¡No se lo d´!
e Don™t give it to him!

ii Frequently, the straightforward subjunctive occurs as in the following cases:

¡Qu´ te diviertas!
e Have a good time!
¡Qu´ lo / la (M) pases bien!
e Have a good time
¡Qu´ se alivie! (sickness)
e May it get better!
¡Qu´ tengas suerte!
e Good luck!


86
11 The imperative mood



iii In speech, and this is easy, it is also common to hear an in¬nitive preceded by a:

¡A pasarla (M) bien! Have a good time!
¡A pasarlo bien! Have a good time!
¡A dormir bien! Sleep well!
¡A comer! Food™s/meal™s ready! It™s on the table!
¡A comer bien! Have a good meal!
¡A disfrutar! Enjoy yourselves!

Exercises Level 2
i Cambia el in¬nitivo al imperativo con Uds. como si estuvieras en Mexico y no en
´
Espana:
˜

Ejemplo
Escribir un e-mail a la familia > Escriban un e-mail a la familia
a Hallar la direcci´ n ahora
o g Tomar el cami´ n ma˜ ana
o n
b Manejar con prudencia h Hacer la reservaci´ n ahora
o
c Platicar con todos los cuates i Empacar las maletas
d Lavar la ropa / los platos j Subir al arbol
´
Prender el radio (la in Spain)
e Jalar la cuerda k
Limpiar el sart´ n (la in Spain)
f Poner el auto en el garage l e

ii Cambia al negativo como en el ejemplo:
Prepara la comida > No prepares la comida
a Agrega (M) (careful) un poco de sal i Ven ahora
b Escribe la tarjeta ahora j Coge (careful) / Toma (M) esta pelota
c Corre hasta la verja (railings) k Cuida la casa
d Abre la lata l Prepara la comida
e Dale el coche a tu pap´ a m Platica (M) (careful) en la cocina
f Dile la verdad a tu mam´ a n Lava (M) los platos
g Pon la mesa o Duerme una siesta
h Haz la tarea p Aprende a manejar (M)

iii Cambia al negativo como en el ejemplo
Dale la revista > No le des la revista
a Esp´ rame
e j Esc´ chalas
u
b Inv´talos a cenar
± k P´dele diez d´ lares
± o
c Ponlo en mi cama l Ci´ rrala
e
d Lev´ ntate
a m Si´ ntate
e
e Acu´ state
e n B´ scalas
u
f Hazlo m´ s tarde
a o Pru´ bala
e
g Ay´ dala
u p Vis´talos hoy
±
h Ap´ gala
a q Despi´ rtate
e
i Ll´ malos
a r Expl´camelo
±
´
iv Eres un muchacho muy respondon / una muchacha muy respondona (full of nerve /
cheeky) y no quieres hacer lo que te pide tu hermano/a mayor. El/la hermano/a es
´
bastante agresivo/a pero tu pisas muy fuerte (stick to your guns). El hermano te da


87
A STUDENT GRAMMAR OF SPANISH




´ ´
ordenes (a menudo con la forma a¬rmativa del imperativo) y tu las rechazas (con la
˜ ´
forma negativa). Escribe un pequeno dialogo que exprese este enfrentamiento. Lo
´ ˜
puedes escribir como si estuvieras en Mexico o en Espana:
Inicio del di´ logo (en M´ xico):
a e
Hermano mayor: Oye, ¡Dame la pelota!
Hermano peque˜ o:
n ¡No me hables as´!
±
v Actividad en grupos de cinco
Objetivo “ Aprender a dar ordenes tanto con la forma Uds. como con la forma del
´
in¬nitivo. Se usa tambi´ n el imperativo en negativo con el re¬‚exivo
e
M´ todo “ Un miembro de cada grupo de cinco da ordenes a los otros cuatro. Ellos
e ´
obedecen estas ordenes
´
Ejemplos
¡P´ nganse la chamarra (M) / la chaqueta!
o
¡No cierren los ojos! (eso, s´, es pan comido “ what™s this? )
±
¡Abrir la boca!
¡No se levanten!
Se pueden aprovechar los siguientes verbos:
Ponerse, hablar, platicar, sentarse, pararse (M), levantarse, volverse, caminar, detenerse,
respirar, dejar de respirar (¡Tengan cuidado!), inclinarse, enderezarse, tirar de las orejas,
soltar las orejas, quitarse, cubrir la cara, peinarse, estrecharle la mano a tu vecino/a,
darle un besito a tu vecina (los mexicanos y los espa˜ oles lo hacen sin problema, y esto
n
incluye al autor)




88
Unit 12 (Unidad 12)
Irregular verbs (Los verbos
irregulares)


Level 1
1.1 Irregular verbs (Los verbos irregulares)
´
1.2 Radical changing verbs (Los verbos con diptongacion)




1.1 Irregular verbs

Irregular verbs have the habit of worrying people, for they seem to herald a long list
of tiresome tenses to be learnt, when it would have been so much kinder if these verbs
or their users had made an effort towards conformity to the types we already know.
Certainly, Spanish irregular verbs are more complicated than English verbs, and there
do seem to be a lot of them. However, many of them are quite rare, so that perhaps ¬fty
irregular verbs need to be learnt, and others are compounds from shorter irregular verbs
conjugated like them. Suponer comes from poner, devolver comes from volver, detener comes
from tener, and so on. So, numerous Spanish irregular verbs are not unique.
Space does not allow a full tabulation of all Spanish irregular verbs. Good-quality
dictionaries such as the Collins, the Oxford, or the Simon and Schuster contain all
the necessary information. The Spanish Verbs by Mar´a Rosario Hollis (Teach Yourself
±
Books) and 501 Spanish Verbs by Kendris (Barron™s Educational Series) are also very
helpful.
This unit is an introduction to Spanish irregular verbs, while it is suggested you refer
to other units for irregularities in verbs when they are used in the future tense (unit 6),
conditional (unit 9), imperfect (unit 7), perfect (unit 5), preterit (unit 8), and the subjunctive
(unit 16) and imperative moods (unit 11). See also unit 13 for the irregular verbs ser and
estar. To avoid over-complication at this stage, we shall limit ourselves to the present
tense of irregular verbs. A certain number have to be learnt because they have a habit
of recurring in the language. In other words, they comprise some of the most useful and
necessary verbs. Among the most common irregular verbs are:
caer (to fall), haber (to have), hacer (to do/make), ir (to go), poner (to put), tener (to have), ver
(to see), and two verbs to be treated separately in the following unit, i.e. ser (to be) and
estar (to be)




89
A STUDENT GRAMMAR OF SPANISH




They are conjugated in the following way:
caer haber hacer ir poner ver
caigo he hago voy pongo veo
yo
´ caes has haces vas pones ves
tu
´ cae ha hace va pone ve
el(la/Ud.)
caemos hemos hacemos vamos ponemos vemos
nosotros/as
ca´is
e hab´is
e hac´is
e vais pon´is
e
vosotros/as veis
caen han hacen van ponen ven
ellos(as/Uds.)

It is important to bear in mind, and this is occasionally pointed out throughout the book,
that in Spanish America the vosotros/as form is not used and is replaced by Uds.


1.2 Radical changing verbs
There is another large group of verbs which Spanish speakers call “irregular,” but which
English speakers refer to as “radical/stem changing.” This latter designation seems to be
much more helpful than the blanket “irregular,” for most of the verbs in question follow
a set pattern, and once you have learnt the pattern you have easy and accurate access to
a whole range of verbs. However, within these sets of radical changing verbs, some do not
follow the pattern everywhere. The special feature of these radical changing verbs is that
the root vowel of the in¬nitive changes to a diphthong, in the indicative for instance. This
explains why well-informed Spanish speakers refer to this phenomenon as diptongaci´n = o
diphthongization. In the following tables, you will see that in the ¬rst, second, third
person singular and third personal plural the root vowel u changes to ue, the root vowel
e changes to ie, the root vowel e changes to i, and the root vowel o changes to ue

jugar (to play) cerrar (to shut) pedir (to ask for) soltar (to release / let go)
juego cierro pido suelto
juegas cierras pides sueltas
juega cierra pide suelta
jugamos cerramos pedimos soltamos
jug´ is
a cerr´ is
a ped´s
± solt´ is
a
juegan cierran piden sueltan

Other common verbs where this change takes place are as follows:
o“ue e“ie e“i
contar (to count/relate/tell) defender (to defend) corregir (to correct)
costar (to cost) empezar (to begin) despedir (to dismiss)
devolver (to give back) *fregar (to wash up) impedir (to prevent)
dormir (to sleep) mentir (to [tell a] lie) investir (to invest)
encontrar (to meet/¬nd) pensar (to think) seguir (to follow)
llover (to rain) perder (to lose)
poder (to be able) querer (to want/wish)
recordar (to remember) recomendar (to recommend)
resolver (to [re]solve) regar (to water/irrigate)



90
12 Irregular verbs



tostar (to toast) sentir (to feel/regret)
volar (to ¬‚y) tener (to have)
*volver (to go/come back) tentar (to touch/try/tempt)
venir (to come)
verter (to pour/spill)


* little used in M with this meaning
Another common verb in the -ue classi¬cation is soler (to be in the habit of). See
examples below.

Examples
o > ue
Cuenta del uno al diez Count from one to ten
Contamos contigo We count on you
Puedo hacerlo I can do it
Podemos ir hoy We can go today
Suelo leer por la ma˜ ana
n I usually read in the morning
Solemos tomar el tren We usually take the train
e > ie
De¬endo mi punto de vista I defend my position
Defendemos la democracia We defend democracy
El chocolate me tienta Chocolate tempts me
Tentamos a los ni˜ os con caramelos
n We tempt the children with candies/sweets
Riego el c´sped
e I water the lawn
Regamos el c´sped
e We water the lawn
e>i
Corrige los ejercicios He corrects the exercises
Corregimos el error We correct the error
Me impiden ir They prevent me from going
Los impedimos trabajar We prevent them from working


Exercises Level 1
i Change the in¬nitive to the present indicative

Example
Yo (poner) la taza en la mesa > (Yo) Pongo la taza en la mesa
a La maceta (caer) por el balc´ n
o i Yo (tener) quince a˜ os
n
¿(Venir) vosotros esta tarde? (not in M)
b Yo (hacer) mis deberes j
c Ella (hacer) su trabajo k ¿(Venir) Uds. esta noche? (M)
d Yo (ir) al cine l Yo no (ver) el p´ jaro
a
e Ellos/as (ir) al parque m ¿(Decir) t´ la verdad?
u
f Uds. (ir) a casa de sus pap´ s (M)
a n Yo le (dar) un regalo a mi pap´ a
g Yo no (poder) ir al pueblo o Ella (querer) estudiar
h ¿Qu´ (querer) Uds. hacer? (M)
e p No (querer) nosotros leer



91
A STUDENT GRAMMAR OF SPANISH




ii Change as in the example

Juego f´ tbol (M) (nosotros) > Jugamos f´ tbol (jugar al futbol in Spain)
´
u u
a No tengo prisa (´ l)
e i Pienso comprarlo (nosotros)
b Vuelves a casa (nosotros) j ¿Cu´ ndo empiezas el trabajo? (ellos)
a
c Cierras la puerta (yo) k Pierdo el conocimiento (is this possible?)
Quiero ir a la alberca (ellos) (piscina =
d (ellos)
Spain) l No encuentro la bolsa (ellas)
e ¿Prefer´s leer? (Uds.)
± m Pido dinero (nosotros)
f Duermes poco (nosotros) n Encienden la chimenea (yo)
g Devuelve el dinero (ellos) o Recordamos su nombre (yo)
h Resolvemos el ejercicio (yo) p Jorge cuenta las naranjas (yo)



iii Answer the questions as in the examples:

¿Cierras la puerta? > S´, cierro la puerta
±
¿Encontr´ is la soluci´ n? > S´, encontramos la soluci´ n
a o ± o
a ¿Sigues en tu carro? (M) h ¿Vuelan mucho Uds.? (M)
b ¿Repiten Uds. la frase? (M) i ¿En qu´ piensan Uds.? (M)
e
c ¿Sirves la cena ahora? j ¿En qu´ piensan ellas?
e
d ¿Seguimos en nuestro coche? k ¿Qui´ n lava (M) / friega los platos?
e
e ¿Qui´ n corrige los ejercicios?
e l ¿Invierten Uds. todo el dinero?
f ¿Me pides un favor? m ¿Nos imped´s (not in M) salir?
±
g ¿Duermen Uds. bien? (M) n ¿Recomiendas este restaurante?


iv Paired activity

Objective “ using irregular verbs in the present tense
Method “ each of the pair asks the other to conjugate the present tense of an irregular
verb. This can include stem changing verbs. The more you practice these irregular verbs
the easier it will become. The author is proof of this.

Examples
Conjuga el verbo hacer en tiempo presente
(Yo) hago / (t´ ) haces / (´ l/ella/Ud.) hace (see 1.1 above for the rest)
u e
Conjuga el verbo preferir en tiempo presente
(Yo) pre¬ero / (t´ ) pre¬eres / (´ l/ella/Ud.) pre¬ere / preferimos / prefer´s (not M) / ellos/
u e ±
(ellas/Uds.) pre¬eren
Remember that you rarely need the subject pronoun as the ending of the verb is good
enough. And it™s quicker. It may call for thinking time but try to lose the habit!
Level 2
´
2.1 Further common irregular verbs (Mas verbos irregulares comunes)
´
2.2 Spelling (orthographical) changes (Cambios ortogra¬cos)



92
12 Irregular verbs




2.1 Further common irregular verbs
Listed below is another group of irregular verbs, the forms of which have to be learnt. The
present tense is given, sometimes alongside the present subjunctive, merely to illustrate the
irregularities. It is suggested you consult a list of verb tables for a full list of irregularities for
these verbs, and in their different tenses. This will be especially helpful for the exercises.
The preterit can be particularly deceptive. Erguir and caber, for example, look impossible.
Ask Spanish-speaking children! As for their preterits, a ¬end in the Middle Ages must
have been hard at work.
erguir (to straighten up/raise) “ yergo, yergues, yergue, erguimos, ergu´s, yerguen
±
Present subjunctive: yerga, yergas, yerga, irgamos, irg´ is, irgan
a
caber (to be contained in, to be room for) “ quepo, cabes, cabe, cabemos, cab´is, caben
e
Present subjunctive: quepa, quepas, quepa, quepamos, quep´ is, quepan
a
Preterit (ergu´/erguiste/irgui´ /erguimos/erguisteis/irguieron “
± o
cupe/cupiste/cupo/cupimos/cupisteis/cupieron)
*fre´r (to fry) “ fr´o, fr´es, fr´e, fre´mos, fre´s, fr´en
±± ± ± ±±
±
Present subjunctive: fr´a, fr´as, fr´a, friamos, fri´ is, fr´an
±± ± a ±
o´r (to hear) “ oigo, oyes, oye, o´mos, o´s, oyen
± ±
±
Present subjunctive: oiga, oigas, oiga, oigamos, oig´ is, oigan
a
oler (to smell) “ huelo, hueles, huele, olemos, ol´is, huelen
e
Present subjunctive: huela, huelas, huela, olamos, ol´ is, huelan
a
saber (to know) “ s´, sabes, sabe, sabemos, sab´is, saben
e e
Present subjunctive: sepa, sepas, sepa, sepamos, sep´ is, sepana
* Re´r(se) (to laugh) and sonre´r (to smile) are the same as fre´r
± ± ±


2.2 Spelling (orthographical) changes
An irregular verb is, strictly speaking, one which, in its in¬‚ections, varies in any way from
that of the model verb of its conjugation. If this de¬nition were rigorously adhered to, the
number of irregular verbs would rise in a spectacular manner; but in the greater number,
the deviations are so uniform as to constitute a kind of secondary regularity, and may be
grouped into several classes. The majority of the deviations are purely related to spelling,
and spelling changes merely preserve the sound of the stem as presented in the in¬nitive.
The following changes according to tense, mood or subject of the verb are necessary to
observe uniformity of pronunciation. They appear notably in the ¬rst person singular
of the present indicative (corrijo = I correct), the ¬rst person singular of the preterit
(busqu´ = I looked for), and the present subjunctive (busque = that I should look for).
e
However, this comment is only for general guidance. Here are the main spelling changes:
i -car: > -c before e > que


Preterit: busqu´, buscaste, busc´, etc.
e o
buscar
Present subjunctive: busque, busques, busque, etc.
(to look for)

Other common similarly affected verbs:


93
A STUDENT GRAMMAR OF SPANISH




acercar (to bring closer), achacar (to impute / accuse), arrancar (to pull / set going), atracar (to
lock/jam), comunicar (to communicate), educar (to educate), falsi¬car (to falsify), intoxicar (to
poison), invocar (to invoke), justi¬car (to justify), marcar (to mark/score), noti¬car (to notify),
paci¬car (to pacify), volcar (to overturn)
ii -gar: > -g before e > gue

Preterit: apagu´, apagaste, apag´, etc
e o
apagar
Present subjunctive: apague, apagues, apague, etc
(to extinguish)
Other common similarly affected verbs:
agregar (to add), ahogar (to drown), castigar (to punish), cegar (to blind/block up), colgar (to
hang [things]), desahogar (to relieve), desplegar (to unfold), fregar (to wash up* / scrub), halagar
(to ¬‚atter), indagar (to investigate), llegar (to arrive), naufragar (to be shipwrecked), negar (to
deny), pagar (to pay), plegar (to fold), rogar (to request), segar (to mow/cut)
* Not in M. The Mexicans use lavar los platos in this context
iii -gua: -gu before e > gue
¨

Preterit: averig¨ ´, averiguaste, averigu´, etc
ue o
averiguar
Present subjunctive: averig¨ e, averig¨ es, averig¨ e, etc
u u u
(to ¬nd out)
Similarly: apaciguar (to appease)
iv -eger: -g before o or a > j

Present indicative: escojo, escoges, escoge, etc
escoger
Present subjunctive: escoja, escojas, escoja, etc
(to choose)
Similarly: *coger (to catch/take)
*Not in M which means “to screw”: what the dictionaries call a taboo word. It is interesting
to note here how language and meaning vary from one country to another. This is a
digression but it is worth saying for your future studies.
Tirar means “to throw” in Spain or “throw down” (onto the ground) / “away” (if trash)
but in Colombia we come back to the taboo meaning of coger. Concha is a shell in Spain
and Mexico but in Argentina it is again a most offensive taboo word (look it up!).
v -gir: g before o or a > j

Present indicative: corrijo, corriges, corrige, etc
corregir
Present subjunctive: corrija, corrijas, corrija, etc
(to correct)
Similarly: elegir (to choose/elect), sumergir (to submerge)
vi -cer: c before o or a > zc

Present indicative: conozco, conoces, conoce, etc
conocer
Present subjunctive: conozca, conozcas, conozca, etc
(to know)
Similarly: agradecer (to thank), amanecer (to dawn), anochecer (to fall [of night]), atardecer (to
get dark), cocer (to cook/bake), crecer (to grow), esclarecer (to clarify), escocer (to sting/smart),
obedecer (to obey), parecer (to appear/seem), perecer (to perish), reconocer (to recognize), vencer
(to conquer/expire)

94
12 Irregular verbs



vii -cir: c before o or a > zc

Present indicative: traduzco, traduces, traduce, etc
traducir
Present subjunctive: traduzca, traduzcas, traduzca, etc
(to translate)
Similarly: esparcir (to scatter), lucir (to shine)
viii -zar: z before e > c

Preterit: almorc´, almorzaste, almorz´, etc
e o
almorzar
Present subjunctive: almuerce, almuerces, almuerce, almorcemos, etc
(to have lunch)
Similarly: cazar (to hunt), comenzar (to commence), empezar (to begin), esforzarse (to strive),
forzar (to force), localizar (to locate)
Exercises Level 2
i Cambia al preterito como en el ejemplo:
´
Me r´o todo el d´a > Me re´ todo el d´a
± ± ± ±
a Oye el ruido g El caballo yergue las orejas
b No quepo aqu´ ± h Dice que no
c No s´ la respuesta
e i No puedo correr
d Sonr´e como La Gioconda
± j Hago todos mis deberes
e La casa huele a pino k Va al teatro
f Fr´e papas
± l Quiere comer ahora
ii Pon el in¬nitivo en subjuntivo como en el ejemplo:

Ejemplo
Hace falta que (apagar/t´ ) la luz > Hace falta que apagues la luz
u
a Hace falta que (colgar/ella) el sombrero
b Hace falta que (fregar/yo) los platos
c Es importante que (plegar/nosotros) las sillas
d Me dice que (permanecer/yo) en este lugar
e El director insiste en que (establecer/ellos) un sucursal aqu´
±
f Es esencial que (merecer/nosotros) el trofeo
g El capit´ n ordena que (desplegarse/ellos)
a
h Le pido al chico que (obedecer) al maestro
i Es esencial que le (agradecer) el regalo a tu padre
j No creo que (escoger/ellos) al mejor jugador
iii Cambia al preterito como en el ejemplo:
´

Ejemplo
Busco mi cartera > Busqu´ mi cartera
e
a Le comunico el mensaje al hermano
b Educo a mi hijo
c Cazo conejos
d Me esfuerzo en terminar el trabajo
e Empiezo a jugar al ajedrez
f Castigo al ni˜ o travieso
n
g Marco un gol antol´ gico en la Copa Mundial
o

95
A STUDENT GRAMMAR OF SPANISH




h Pago todas mis deudas
i Acerco la mesa a la pared
j Reconozco a mi amigo
´ ´
iv Perdiste cien dolares. Describe, en preterito y en primera persona, tu experiencia a
´
partir de la perdida hasta encontrarlos. Usa los siguientes verbos con cambios
´ ´
ortogra¬cos (spelling changes), ¡y mucha imaginacion!: Comunicar, acercar, esforzar,
empezar, desplegar, plegar, colgar, halagar, volcar, marcar, tocar, explicar, practicar

Ejemplo
Perd´ cien d´ lares . . . Se lo comuniqu´ a mi hermano . . .
± o e
v Actividad en grupos de cinco
Objetivo “ practicar la conjugaci´ n de verbos irregulares
o
M´ todo “ un(a) representante del grupo elige un verbo. Empieza a conjugarlo, pero
e
s´ lo en primera persona (yo). Los otros cuatro siguen conjugando a su vez, cada uno
o
escogiendo una persona (t´ , el/ella/Ud., nosotros/as, Uds.). Pueden elegir el pret´ rito
u´ e
si quieren.
Ejemplo
O´r El representante dice: (Yo) oigo
±
Su amigo sigue con: (t´ ) oyes
u
El amigo siguiente dice: (´ l/ella/Ud.) oye
e
Otro amigo dice: (nosotros) o´mos
±
El ultimo dice: (ellos/ellas/Uds.) oyen
´
Pero, no olvidar que, en Espa˜ a, se usa la forma correspondiente a vosotros (o´s) y pueden
±
n
recitarla si quieren.
Se puede hacer igual con, por ejemplo, el pret´ rito de o´r
±
e
O´, o´ste, oy´ , o´mos, o´steis, oyeron.
±± o± ±
Otras sugerencias de verbos que, salvo sonre´r and fre´r, hasta ahora no han aparecido en
± ±
el texto: oler, te˜ ir, sonre´r, fre´r, errar, dormir, re˜ ir. Cuando hayas aprendido bien el
n ± ± n
uso de estos verbos, experimentar´ s una gran satisfacci´ n.
a o




96
Unit 13 (Unidad 13)
Ser and estar (Ser y estar)


Level 1
´
1.1 Basic distinctions between ser and estar (Distinciones basicas entre ser y estar)
1.2 Ser and estar + adjective (Ser y estar + adjetivo)
´
1.3 Further differences between ser and estar (Mas diferencias entre ser y estar)
1.4 Ser and estar with prepositions, and hay (Ser y estar con preposiciones, y hay)


1.1 Basic distinctions between ser and estar
As in Italian, there are in Spanish two verbs, ser and estar, corresponding to the English
verb to be. They are not used interchangeably and can lend themselves to confusion.
However, each one has distinct provinces. In form, they are quite irregular:
ser estar
Yo soy estoy I am
t´ 
u eres est´ s
a ± you are
´l   he is
e
ella es est´
a she is
 
Ud. you are
nosotros/as somos estamos we are
vosotros/as sois est´ is
a ± you are

ellos   they are
ellas son est´ n
a they are
 
Uds. you are

The fundamental distinction is that ser expresses an inherent or essential quality. Indeed,
its Latin etymology (esse) suggests essence; estar, on the other hand, suggests an exter-
nal or accidental quality or condition. The following contrasted examples will help to
illustrate this feature:
a La caja es redonda b La sopa es rica
The box is round The soup is nice
La caja est´ vac´a
a± La sopa est´ fr´a

The box is empty The soup is cold
c Son inteligentes d Es terca
They are intelligent She™s stubborn
Est´ n bien educados
a Est´ indecisa
a
They are well educated She™s undecided
In (a), an essential characteristic of the box is that it is round, hence the use of ser. That
the box is empty entails the use of estar because, at some later time, it could be full. In (b),
the soup is nice, and the suggestion is that it is a type of soup that is always nice, hence the
use of ser, whereas the fact that the soup is cold is a temporary state of affairs, which leads
to the use of estar. After all, it could be hot. In (c), the people are innately intelligent,

97
A STUDENT GRAMMAR OF SPANISH




always have been and always will be, unless, unpredictably, they become unbalanced. Ser
is the appropriate verb here. The well-educated people could have been poorly educated,
but may have been born awash with money so are well educated. The contingent nature
of their education is characterized by estar. Finally, in (d), one of the girl™s permanent
features is that she is stubborn, as implied by ser. Notwithstanding her stubbornness,
she could be undecided at a particular moment, which explains the use of estar.


1.2 Ser and estar + adjective
It can happen, unfortunately, that the same adjective may be used with both verbs,
according to the idea in the mind of the speaker or the writer. Here, the distinction
is usually clearly marked but not always. It is comforting to note that many Span-
ish speakers do sometimes hesitate over ser or estar, which explains why a good
all-Spanish dictionary will offer guidance on frequent occasions. The following exam-
ples illustrate difference of meaning of an adjective, according to the use of ser or
estar:
a Es p´ lida
a She™s pale (Her complexion is naturally pale)
Est´ p´ lida
aa She™s pale (because of sickness or fear)
b Estas manzanas son agrias These apples are sharp (That™s their characteristic)
Estas manzanas est´ n agrias
a These apples are sharp (They aren™t usually sharp)
c La mujer es amable The woman is pleasant (She always is)
La mujer est´ amable
a The woman is pleasant (i.e. today)
d El hombre es loco The man is mad (needs medical attention)
El hombre est´ loco
a The man is mad (furious or has some crazy idea)
e Tu hermano es bueno Your brother is good (agreeable person)
Tu hermano est´ bueno
a Your brother is in good
health
f Mi hijo es malo My son is bad (i.e. naughty and always is)
Mi hijo est´ malo
a My son is unwell
For all the above uses of these adjectives with ser and estar, it is quite clear that ser
suggests permanency or essence, while estar relates to a passing state.


1.3 Further differences between ser and estar
There are some examples of contrast between ser and estar which are dif¬cult to
appreciate. However, if you look behind the implications of the use of each verb in the
following pairs of examples, you will understand the differences:
ser estar
Somos todos libres en este pa´s
± ¿Est´ s libre para salir hoy?
a
We are all free in this country Are you free to go out today?
Todos mis estudiantes son listos ¿Est´ n (M) / est´ is listos?
a a
All my students are intelligent Are you ready?
Esta muchacha es muy viva Esta costumbre est´ todav´a viva
a ±
This girl is very lively This custom is still alive


98
13 Ser and estar



No es seguro que puedan hacerlo Estoy segura de que vendr´ n hoy
a
It™s not certain they can do it I™m sure they™ll come today
Desde que le toc´ la loter´a, es feliz
o ± Estoy feliz con mi nuevo trabajo
Since winning the lottery he™s been happy I™m happy with my new job
Note. Although feliz may be used with both ser and estar, depending on the meaning,
it would be unusual for contento to be used with ser. It is almost always used with
estar:
Est´ muy contenta con el nuevo empleado / con su nuevo coche
a
She™s very happy with the new worker / with her new car
In isolation:

ser estar

Implies existence or identity Implies location or state of health
´
todo lo que es all that is ¿Esta Pedro? Is Peter there?
´ ´ ´
¿Quien es? Who™s that/there? ¿Como estas? How are you?




1.4 Ser and estar with prepositions, and hay
i Estar is used in the following prepositional phrases where it can be seen that the
circumstances are temporary:

Est´ con (la) gripe
a Estoy sin dinero El cuarto est´ a oscuras
a
She™s got the ¬‚u I™m without money The room is in darkness
Hoy est´ de mal/buen humor
a Mi abuela est´ de luto
a
Today he™s in a bad/good mood My grandmother is in
mourning
ii Idioms with prepositions

Ser
When denoting origin, or referring to substance, or belonging: ser de
Somos de Chihuahua Esta mesa es de madera
We™re from Chihuahua This table is of wood
La perfecci´n no es de este mundo
o
Perfection is not of this world
To become of:
¿Qu´ ha sido de ella?
e ¿Qu´ ser´ de m´?
ea ±
What™s happened to her? What™ll happen to me?
Estar
estar para / a punto de to be about to / on the estar para to be in the mood for
point of
Yo estaba para / a punto de salir I was about to No estoy para bromas I™m not in the mood for
go out joking


99
A STUDENT GRAMMAR OF SPANISH




estar por to be inclined to estar por to be in favor of
Estoy por llamarlo I™m inclined to phone him Estoy por la paz I™m in favor of peace
estar por (impersonal) (remains to be) estar en que to believe
Su mejor novela est´ por escribir
a Estoy en que no se da cuenta
Her best novel remains to be written I believe he doesn™t realize
iii When used as nouns, ser and estar, the distinction becomes even clearer:

el ser humano = human being el bienestar del hombre = man™s wellbeing
iv Note the invariable expression hay = there is/are. (See also unit 15, level 1.2, for
more information on hay, and its various tenses.) You might expect ser and estar
here but this is not the case.

Examples
Hay un arbol cerca del r´o
´ ± There is a tree near the river
Hay muchos autos en la calle There are many cars in the street
Hay un estudiante en el aula There is a student in the lecture hall
Hay centenares de espectadores There are hundreds of spectators
Hay s´lo un invitado
o There is only one guest
Hay unos veinte muchachos There are about twenty boys


Exercises Level 1
i Fill in the spaces with ser or estar. Bear in mind that you may often leave out the
personal pronouns when they are subjects of the sentence

a (Yo) ( ) alto l Uds. ( ) muy listas (M)
b (Ella) ( ) morena m La casa ( ) cuadrada
c ¿( ) segura? n Estas papas (M) / patatas ( ) demasiado
d El hijo ( ) contento calientes
e ( ) siempre feliz o La muchacha ( ) amable hoy
f (Nosotros) ( ) libres hoy p Estos jitomates (M) ( ) jugosos
g ¿D´ nde ( ) Tijuana?
o q El bosque ( ) hermoso
h (Ella) ( ) enferma r El beb´ ( ) desnudo
e
i El ni˜ ( ) chico (M)
no s Estas calles ( ) estrechas
j ¿Qui´ n ( ) ese autor?
e t Este carro (M) ( ) largo
k Uds. ( ) bien educados (M)


ii Write sentences, or a small dialogue, with ser and estar, using the following words
which are adjectives, nouns or expressions:
P´ lido, enfermo, de m´, gripe, m´ dico, acatarrado/constipado, seguro, claro, simp´ tico,
a ± e a
listo, dispuesto, chistoso, malo, descontento, vivo, feliz, normal, cuarto oscuro, por
recomendar fruta, entretenido, de buen humor, a punto de

iii Paired activity
Objective “ Distinguish between ser and estar
Method “ Each person asks her/his partner a series of ten questions based on ser and
estar.

100
13 Ser and estar



Examples

P R E G U N TA : ¿Eres alto/a o peque˜ o/a?
n
R E S P U E S TA : Soy alto/a
P R E G U N TA : ¿D´ nde est´ s?
o a
R E S P U E S TA : Estoy en el sal´ n (M) / la sala de clase
o
P R E G U N TA : ¿D´ nde est´ n tus cuates (M) / amigos?
o a
R E S P U E S TA : Est´ n en el pasillo
a

Don™t forget the agreement with ser and estar if it is accompanied by an adjective.
Afterwards, the teacher can call the class together to discuss the ¬ndings
Level 2
2.1 Various tenses of ser and estar (Varios tiempos de ser y estar)
2.2 Ser and estar with nouns, pronouns, in¬nitives and clauses (Ser y estar con
nombres, pronombres, in¬nitivos y oraciones)
2.3 Ser and estar with the gerund (Ser y estar con el gerundio)
2.4 Ser and estar in the passive voice with a past participle (Ser y estar en voz
pasiva con participio de rasado)
2.5 Ser and estar + adjective (Ser y estar + adjetivo)


2.1 Various tenses of ser and estar
Some of the tenses of ser and estar reappear in the treatment of tenses in different units,
for example in the unit on the preterit (unit 8). However, it seems useful to list them all
together here. The present tense appears in level 1 of this unit. Here are the others, and
this includes the subjunctive forms as well:
Ser
Past participle: sido > he/hab´a/habr´/habr´a sido . . . has/hab´as/habr´ s/habr´as
± e ± ± a ±
sido . . .
Preterit: fui fuiste fue fuimos fuisteis fueron
Imperfect: era eras era ´ramos erais eran
e
Future: ser´ ser´ s ser´ seremos ser´is ser´ n
eaa e a
Imperative: s´ sea (Ud.) seamos sed sean (Uds.)
e
Present subjunctive: sea seas sea seamos se´ is sean
a
Imperfect subjunctive: fuera fueras fuera fu´ramos fuerais fueran + fuese fueses fuese
e
fu´semos fueseis fuesen
e
Estar
Past participle: estado > he/hab´a/habr´/habr´a estado . . . has/hab´as/habr´ s/habr´as
± e ± ± a ±

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