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  5. "Yo había escrito un libro."

"Yo había escrito un libro."

Translation:I had written a book.

October 26, 2013



...pero mi perro lo comí.


*Mi perro se lo comió :)


Excuse me. Would you tell me the use of that 'se'


The speaker drops so many vowels that I despair of understanding spoken Spanish. This comes out as: yo vascritun libro. If I play the slow version I can understand. But the normal speech? No.


Try listening to a Dominican or Cuban. They drop the vowels AND the consonants half the time, so "Estados Unidos" becomes "Estáos Uníos" if you're lucky.


I would take offense (i'm dominican) but i know it's true XD


It sounds about right to me. The H is silent so yo había turns into yoabeea which morphs smoothly into the e of escrito. The o blends into the u from un. If you listen carefully you can make all this out.


Oh, but you probably didn't notice that in the the fast version she actually pronounced a V instead of a B, i.e. "havía". That is why Joe heard "vas". However in the slow version she pronounces "había" with a B.

It sounds like a Portuguese (havia) or perhaps an Andaluz (?) accent:


That's because in Spanish both B and V are pronounced by vibrating the lips like a V, but in the position of making the B noise. It's like a much softer B.


To me, the fast version sounds like "yo via escrito..."


Why not, "a book"?


That would also work


Sometimes "yo habia" is used, sometimes "me habia." What's the reason for the difference?


habia is the conjugation for the first and third person past tense of haber

yo habia escrito una carta. - I had written a letter. (yo) me habia escrito una carta. - I had written myself a letter. (el/ella) me habia escrito una carta. - He/she had written me a letter.


Thank you very much. This is a big help. When I get the hang of this piece of grammar, I'll feel like I'm really cookin'.


it depends on the following verb, whether it is reflexive or not.


Can you give me some hints for recognizing reflexive verbs?


Me había regalado una joya. I had given myself a jewel. Reflexive means the person doing the action and the person receiving the action are one and the same.


I can't hear too weel. She sound Swedish to me, which is kinda funny. Soy Danes.


The word "escrito" doesn't appear in the list of conjugations by Duolingo. When I look at it on spanishdict.com it says the translation is "written." However spanishdict doesn't have a conjugations tab for this word. What type of conjugation is this?


It is a form of verb called the participle. Specifically, the participle form of escribir.

SpanishDict is probably in the wrong for not linking "escrito" to "escribir" with a Conjugations tab. An English dictionary I just looked up listed "written" as a form of a verb. It could just be oversight on their part. I have seen definite mistakes, like translating "dos" as "five", on there before, in the definition section. Even though they're wrong occasionally, it's a good resource. I love their verb conjugation tables, very easy on the eyes and simple, and I've never found a mistake in them.


Protip: I get my conjugations from http://www.123teachme.com .


Is this sentence strange, or is it just me? If you "had" written a book instead of "have" written a book, it means the writing of the book is no longer true. How can a book get unwritten?


There's a reason for using this form. The past perfect "had written" contains additional information compared with "has/have written". For example, if a man says "I am seventy years old, and I have written a bestselling book on nuclear physics", then that's a good accomplishment. If the same man says, "By the time I was eight years old, I had written a bestselling book on nuclear physics", that tells a different story. Basically, the past perfect adds the information that something was done by a certain point in time in the past, which can be useful.


Thanks for the response. Yes, I do understand the meaning of "had" and how it adds more information than "have." I like your example, "By the time I was eight years old, I had written a bestselling book on nuclear physics." It makes their sentence make a little more sense. But the point I was making is, "I had written a book" isn't something anyone would ever say in and of itself without additional context, such as a response as part of a discussion or with a preface of something like your example, "By the time I was eight years old, I had written a bestselling book on nuclear physics."



"But the point I was making is..."

Well, actually the point you were making is that the sentence was ungrammatical, and you questioned how someone could unwrite a book. You said,

"If you 'had' written a book instead of 'have' written a book, it means the writing of the book is no longer true. How can a book get unwritten?"

So, you thought the sentence made no sense grammatically (you were wrong), which means that you initially believed that no context could ever be provided that would render this sentence intelligible. Then someone gave you that context, and you changed your story, claiming this would not be something anyone would ever say without additional context. But this is not something anyone could ever say without additional context existing. You cannot say this in isolation. The context is implicit, obviously. So, if you need context, then merely apply your imagination and supply it. You have just been shown how to do that. Take it on board.

Look, the point is that sentences on Duo are without context. There is no other way to present a single sentence. There is no context by definition. So instead of moaning about the lack of context, just learn the words and how the grammar works, no matter how ridiculous the sentences may at first seem to you. Once you have learned Spanish, you can use all this knowledge to utter meaningful sentences in Spanish in context. We are not here to critique the Spanish offered on Duo by criticizing English translations. How could that ever work? If an English translation here appears awkward or strange then look again: Duo is trying to illustrate a point of Spanish grammar. And if that is at the cost of an unprepossessing English translation, then so be it.


Very well stated and I can't agree more!

(I wanted to give you ten lingots but my lingot chest could only afford three. :()


Ah, I often misunderstand the purpose of people's questions, and I did so with yours. You're correct, I can't think of any possible situation where this sentence can stand alone or begin an exchange, without any context.


"Why did Terry Gross interview you on NPR?" "I had written a book"


"The past perfect tense is used when a past action was completed prior to another past action." I found this helpful. There seems to be some comparison involved even if it is only just implied. http://www.studyspanish.com/lessons/pastperfect.htm


Could i use tuve in this imstance


No, you have to use part of the auxiliary verb 'haber' for this tense.


This should be "a book"


I have written a book. Wtf . Correct it please.


Yo he escrito... = I have written; Yo había escrito = I had written


nobody says 'had', EVER


So you are trying to tell me that there is not a past tense using 'had'? For example: 'What HAD you achieved by the time you were thirty?' 'I HAD written a book.'


So hadia I!! I'm 13 years old and I will have have my book (The Secret Eight) published by May. It's $9.99 and you can buy it on Amazon.

<h1>shameless advertising</h1>


Why not, "I had wrote a book"?


'Written' es el participio pasado del verbo 'to write', equivalente a 'escrito'.


Lo puse bien y me marcó malo!

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