"Siempre me siento cansado."
Translation:I always feel tired.
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For me, this was a listening question where you type the sentence in Spanish afterwards. I got it right because it was simply typing what was said, but I do have one question about it. The speaker was female, but she used "cansado." I thought because she was female, that she would have to use "cansada." Was Duolingo wrong, or am I misunderstanding?
You're understanding it right, cansado refers to a male person, and cansada to a female one. But Duolingo is not necessarily wrong. Rather, it is programmed in such a fashion that every sentence can be spoken by any speaker. So you can either imagine that the (female) speaker is quoting a (male) person, or that Duolingo's speakers do not have a fixed gender.
I think that Duolingo is trying to get you to hear the difference no matter the context, because there are situations that a female speaker could say "cansado" (talking about someone else) or even "estoy cansado" (reading out loud from a book?) But the point is, you'll be better off if you can hear the difference. And practice should give you the ability.
Me means "me" and is used together with verbs, talking about "me" as an object of an action.
Mi means "my" and is used together with nouns, talking about me as an owner of that noun.
Mí (with an accent) means "me" and is used after prepositions, talking about "me" as the object of that preposition.
English's adverb placement rules are a mess. Usually if you have an adverb ("always") that modifies the verb ("feel"), you place it in front of the full verb of the sentence, unless that verb is a form of "to be". So "I always feel tired" is the better option here, but I might be picking nits.
No. I am a native speaker of Midwestern American English and I have never heard any native speaker say "I feel always tired." That sounds like something a non-native speaker would say.
- "It really is picking nits" -- No, it's not an important distinction, it's nit-picking.
- "It is really picking nits" -- Is this guy a professional nit-picker or what? I've never seen anything so nit-picky before.
The placement of "really" changes its scope and with it the meaning of the sentence.
Really? I too am a native speaker of Midwestern American English. You mean to say that you would not say, for example, "I am really tired"? That is, you would insist on saying, "I really am tired"? The placement of "really" changes nothing. Either would be well within the scope and meaning of the sentence. Whether you would use "am" or "feel" also does not matter. As a midwesterner (and a long-time journal and book editor) I value the flexibility of the English language.
You need to use the me in this sentence. But you can add yo if you want: "Yo siempre me siento cansada."
If you describe a feeling with an adjective (cansado, feliz, enojado, etc.), you need to use a form of sentirse, including a reflexive pronoun:
- Me siento cansado. - I feel tired.
- ¿Te sientes fría? - Do you feel cold?
- No se sienten enojados. - They don't feel angry.
If you describe the thing you feel with a noun, you use the direct form sentir instead:
- Siento tu calor. - I feel your warmth.
- Siente hambre. - He feels hunger. (literally)
Doniras, don't worry too much, it's complicated. The term "gerund" generally refers to a special, unconjugated form of a verb, but it means different things depending on whether you're talking about English or Spanish.
The English gerund is one of the verb forms that ends with '-ing' and which you can use like a noun in a sentence:
- Reading is fun.
- We like dancing.
- Life is suffering.
The gerund is not the '-ing' form used in "the laughing child" or "We are dancing", though. Those are used like adjectives and go by the name "present participle".
The Spanish gerund, called "gerundio" in Spanish, is the verb form that usually ends with '-ando' or '-iendo'. It gets used to describe an action that is currently in progress or is happening simultaneously with some other event. In that regard the Spanish gerund is used in a similar manner as the English present participle, but not the English gerund, which is what makes the terms pretty confusing.
- Él está esperando el tren. - He is (in the middle of) waiting for the train.
- Ella salió corriendo. - She left (while) running.
Whereas when I wrote “I’m always tired”, it was marked wrong.
I realize Spanish uses the reflexive form of the verb ‘to feel’, but in English we’re as likely (or more likely) to use the verb ‘to be’.
e.g He’s tired. She’s angry. I’m hungry. They’re always tired.
Since we’re translating meaning, rather than word-for-word literal translation, “I’m always tired” should be marked correct.
Sentir means "to feel", and you can feel other things if you want:
- Siento esta mesa. - I feel (i.e. touch) this table.
Sentir is used as the transitive form and sentirse (the stuff with me and friends in front of it) is the reflexive form. Specifically that means that sentir is used when you express the feeling (or what you feel) with a noun, and sentirse is used when you use an adjective. Some examples:
- Siento el viento. - I feel the wind.
- ¿Sientes hambre? - Do you feel hungry? (lit. "Do you feel hunger?")
- Sentimos la tristeza del mundo. - We felt the sadness of the world.
- Me siento enojado. - I feel angry.
- ¿Te sientes bien? - Do you feel well?
- No nos sentimos fríos. - We are not feeling cold.
- Te siento. - I feel you. (The touchy kind, not the "I understand your pain" kind.)
It's only "backwards" to you because you're comparing it to English. But English, nor any other language, is the standard by which to compare other languages. Different languages develop independently in their own ways.
Some sentences in Spanish are structured like this, yes. Some sentences in Spanish are structured more like what you're used to in English. With enough exposure and practice you'll get used to it, but you need to stop comparing it to English and take Spanish for what it is.
No. If you use sentir without an object pronoun, you're talking about feeling something, feeling a noun, like a table, hunger, or someone's presence. If the feeling you have is described with an adjective, like tired, worried, happy, etc., then you need to use the reflexive form: sentirse, or "me siento" in this case.
I don't think it should be incorrect to say "I am always tired", I translated it as this and it was marked wrong. I am aware that the literal translation is "I always feel tired", but if you always go with the literal translation you would translate "Uso mi cuaderno azul los lunes" (which I'm pretty sure is a grammatically correct sentence) as "Use my notebook blue the Mondays", which doesn't make sense in English.
I think in English it is more natural to say "I'm always tired" or "I am always tired" than "I always feel tired". Even though it's grammatically correct I've never heard anyone say that.
Do other people say "I feel tired" more than "I am tired"? At least both should be accepted.
It's not extra. It's the object pronoun because it's a reflexive construction. I can't provide a comprehensive list, but it's verbs like sentirse, ducharse, any verb that ends in the reflexive -se. They conjugate like their non-reflexive versions except they require the object pronoun.
Siempre is not the verb. It is the adverb "always". The verb here is "siento".
The infinitive form of "me siento" is "sentirse". It only ends in -se in the infinitive.
It is interesting that sometimes Duolingo requires a literal word for word translation including the placement of adverbs ( though a contemporary English translation would use a different order) and at other times it doesn't. The literal translation here would reverse the subject and the qualifier. This does make for an awkward but not an incorrect English translation.
Don't confuse a strict translation with a literal translation. There are a lot of simple, straightforward sentences that are not idiomatic in either language and the grammar just happens to line up. Strict translations are the difference between
Es mi gato:
It is my cat
The cat is mine.
To the extent that grammar and idiom allow, it defeats the purpose of the lessons to switch things around unnecessarily. Also because those two statements are not entirely synonymous.
But with constructions such as "Siempre me siento cansado", this is a matter of the different languages constructing this differently, and so now we get into the real art of translation, which is rendering it naturally in the target language. And in English, native speakers say "I always feel tired". Putting the adverb anywhere else either makes it really awkward and unnatural, or it shifts the focus to something not covered by the prompt.
I agree wholeheartedly with everything you've said. My comment really was referring to other lessons where the English translation that they wanted was strict with respect to word placement resulting in an awkward English translation. This led me to think that Duolingo wants a strict translation, which was not the case in this example. I agree with their English translation in this case. It just surprised me given previous lessons.
Duolingo is just the platform. Each language module is put together by a different team of volunteers. Each prompt has its own database of answers that is manually curated. There are bound to be inconsistencies between them, and sometimes individuals derp or otherwise make mistakes. If you feel like there is something wrong with how it corrects you, you can always flag it and report a problem with the "correct" answer.
me = me/myself
mí = me (after a preposition--note the accented í)
mi = my
It's not "instead of". sentirse is reflexive. You can say "Yo me siento cansado" (although that adds a bit of emphasis--the subject pronoun is usually dropped) or you can say "Me siento cansado".
To me, "Always I feel..." just sounds wrong. BUT if I use another example of an adverb say "Sometimes I feel..." it doesn't sound wrong at all. So, it might just be one of those idiomatic quirks of English. (To be clear, I'm not suggesting "sometimes" as the translation here).
Pretty much. I'm sure there have been linguistic studies on it analyzing how it works out that way.
What I find interesting is that "always" and "all the time" are essentially synonymous, and yet their placement in the same sentence is opposite:
I feel tired always.
I feel tired all the time.
I always feel tired.
I all the time feel tired.
Emphasis or not, it sounds very strange to my ears to say "Always I feel tired".
In Spanish, "siempre" comes before the verb, but it can't separate the reflexive "me" from "siento". If it were not reflexive, like "I always feel cats", then it would be "Siempre siento los gatos". And the subject pronoun is optional, so it could also be "Yo siempre me siento cansado" or "Yo siempre siento los gatos". I don't know how Spanish would handle emphasis here, though.
I could have sworn you asked about "me siempre siento cansado". I mis-read that, sorry.
Adverbs come before adjectives, but after verbs.
I really wish dúo would match the gender of the verbs to the gender of the speaker. It really can't be good for people's learning to hear a female voice saying "me siento cansado" (or in other places "yo soy un hombre".
I guess there's a case for accepting diversity and being trans friendly by having voices not necessarily sound like stereotypical gender roles, but still, having a voice that sounds like a woman saying "I am a man" and a voice that sounds like a man saying "I am a woman" is still just plain confusing to some students.