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"Ella me dijo que yo debía estar aquí."

Translation:She told me that I should be here.

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5 years ago

75 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/jboalml

"Deber" and "deber de" have different meanings. Without the preposition it means obligation, whereas with preposition it indicates supposition. For instance:

"Debe estar en su casa" means "He must be at home"

"Debe de estar en su casa" means "He is probably at home"

127
Reply45 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/AurosHarman

We use "should" in English in a similar way, but you have to recognize it from context and tone. For instance:

"Where is he?"

"Well, I think he should be at home."

Here, the speaker supposes that the person being discussed is at home, but is not entirely certain. On the other hand:

"Well, I think he should be at home."

In this case, with the emphasis on "should", the speaker really is saying that the person spoken of has a duty to be at home. He might've left, but if so, he's doing something wrong.

21
Reply4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/tu.8zPhLD72zzoZN
tu.8zPhLD72zzoZN
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"She told me that I should be here." is also accepted as correct.

4
Reply2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SFJuan

See: http://spanish.about.com/od/usingparticularverbs/a/deber.htm

As jboalml noted deber can be used to express obligation or likelihood.

Deber can mean must, should or ought in the sense of obligation. As in, She must/should/ought not do that. Using the conditional form of deber (e.g., debería) softens the sense of obligation to should.

Deber de means 'must' in the sense of strong likelihood. As in, She must be out of town. The site notes that in some regions, the de is often dropped in spoken Spanish. It also notes that the use of deber de to express obligation (e.g., El debe de hacer la comida) is considered poor Spanish.

11
Reply3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/lphoenix

What you're saying about the preposition sounds like it must be right, but I don't actually understand it (yet). I simply haven't heard "probably" associated with "deber" at all. But in English when we're wondering where someone is, we might often say "He should be at home [now] [soon]" -- and that is a little bit different than "He is probably at home," but it seems to me it's close enough to reflect deber's "ought to" or "should" meanings. I'm wondering if you really mean to say "He should be at home" instead of "He is probably at home"?

1
Reply4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/elizadeux
elizadeux
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Technically, deber + de means either probability or supposition.

0
Reply3 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/magomezga
magomezga
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The use of DE is not obligatory, in fact it's dropped in many countries.

1
Reply2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/elizadeux
elizadeux
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Right, but then it makes some sentences ambiguous for people learning Spanish. No doubt dropping the de is no problem for the people who live in those countries, but for people learning Spanish, it would make it more confusing as to what exactly is meant.

"Debía hacerlo John" without de could then mean any of the following:

  • "John used to have to do it."

  • "John ought to/should do it."

  • "John must have done it."

On the other hand, "Debía de hacerlo John" = John must have done it.

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Reply3 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/siespanol

Gracias!. Preposition is hard to master.

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Reply4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Rollercoas7

She told me that I should be here on my coach at March 15 at 10:45

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Reply5 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Rollercoas7

2018

0
Reply5 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/dberthold

Why not "I ought to be here"? This would imply obligation but not insist on it.

11
Reply4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/covinm
covinm
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I am having a really hard time with this section.. Especially when the hints show (I/he/she/it/you) used to owe
(I/he/she/it/you) was/were owing
(I/he/she/it/you) owed
And this sentence has nothing to do with owing anything.. I understand that the hints aren't always correct but how am I supposed to learn? I am so confused right now.

8
Reply3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/tristan.be

I understand that "Dijo" is in the preterite, although why should "debia" be in the imperfect? Would it still make any sense to say, "Ella me dijo que yo debo estar aqui"?

7
Reply4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/LydiaSande

Ought to be!!

5
Reply4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Charley-Farley

I agree - shall report it!

2
Reply4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/zopilotes

I still prefer debiera if the idea is "She told me to be here." When one person "commands" another person to do something, it's subjunctive. When one person "commanded" another person in the past, it's past subjunctive. That's why all the commands look like subjunctive. :) (They ARE)

3
Reply4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Pigslew
Pigslew
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One of their alternatives for "debia" (With accent of course) "used to must"!

2
Reply4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Ying56

"debia" With an accent is imperfect. I used "should" which was accepted

1
Reply3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/elizadeux
elizadeux
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"She told me that I must be here." is also accepted. They also appear to have corrected the hints. It reads should or ought to now.

1
Reply3 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Andru1485
Andru1485
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Duolingo is so precise in what it expects here that I fear I'll never pass this section.

2
Reply4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/arturohiero

Should be debiera.

1
Reply5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jboalml

I disagree. Spanish is my mother tongue and the sentence is correct as is. It conveys the idea that I had to be here, in the past. Debiera is wrong in any case (at least in Spanish from Spain). You could also use "debería", but that would change the meaning slightly. It would mean that she expected me to be here in the present but I am not. Obviously, this sentence does not make sense, as if she is capable of telling me this right now is because I am actually here.

6
Reply5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/gabejosh
gabejosh
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what about 'she told me that I needed to be there.' ? Would that be correct? it marked it as incorrect.

1
Reply4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/AurosHarman

Sentences that use "need" in English generally get translated to Spanish using necesitar.

1
Reply4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/elizadeux
elizadeux
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English speakers often say "need to" that's similar to should or even must. One of my books said that necesitar sometimes is as strong as tener que or must, but that "need to" is used far less often in Spanish than in English.

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Reply3 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/S-YBabette

jboalml: that's why i translated it as "She told me that I must STAY here". Because she expected/was "demanding" (something). Estar could also mean to remain somewhere, depending on the context.

1
Reply3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/elizadeux
elizadeux
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Interesting. In the reverse course, the present tense of deber is translated as must, and the conditional debería is translated as should. That gave me the impression that Spanish was similar to English in that debo/must is a much stronger obligation that debería/should. Is that not the case in Spain?

According to my grammar book, it says that both debía (imperfect) and debería (conditional) translate as "should" or "ought to." On the other hand, this sentence is indirect speech (reported speech).

  • What is conditional in estilo indirecto would have been future in direct speech (estilo directo). (Yesterday) she said, "You must (will have to be) here tomorrow" = Ella dijo, "Debe estarás aquí mañana" Or since the conditional in direct speech stays conditional in indirect speech, she might have said, "You should be here tomorrow." = "Debería estar aquí mañana."

  • What is imperfect in estilo indirecto would have been present in direct speech (estilo directo). She said, "You must be here." = Ella dijo, "Debe estar aquí."

So, it seems to me that if what she actually said yesterday was "You will have to be here tomorrow," = "Debe estarás aquí mañana" or "You should be here tomorrow" = "Debería estar aquí mañana," then using the conditional today to report: "Ella dijo que debería estar aquí hoy" should be okay. Or am I misunderstanding something (entirely possible).

0
Reply3 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/julie653

I translated this as "She told me that I should have been here," and the official translation is "She told me that I must be here." I wasn't marked wrong, but these seem to me to be different meanings. I though that since debía is in the imperfect, that the time that I was supposed to be here must be past. Am I wrong?

1
Reply4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/LukeRingland

Yes, this was my thinking too. I'm also a little bit unsure of the different uses of debía versus deberías.

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Reply3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/elizadeux
elizadeux
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She told me that I should have been here = Ella me dijo que debería haber estado aquí

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Reply3 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SHT3z2e4
SHT3z2e4
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This one is very hard for me to translate.

"Must," in English, seems to refer to present or future. "You must [at this exact moment]" or "You must [in the future at the appropriate time]"

I have a hard time thinking of "must" in the past tense. Normally I would instead say "you should have." For example, "You should have come" or "you should have eaten more vegetables."

On the other hand, when I think of the English version of debería, it seems more like "ought to have" to me.

"She told me that I ought to have been here."

In conclusion, "She told me that I should have been here" seems like the most natural English translation of the given Spanish sentence.

Unless I am forgetting something, maybe English does not distinguish between giving a reprimand for something missed ("should have") and clarifying that the missed thing was an order ("must"). English is both messy and passive aggressive, after all.

0
Reply2 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/kabu3200

I wrote "She told me that I should have been there" and it was correct, but it's a totaly different meaning, isn't it? Can that really be right if my answer was in a different tense?

1
Reply4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/elizadeux
elizadeux
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Yes, it does mean something different. "Ella me dijo que debería haber estado aquí" is a reprimand for not being there. "Ella me dijo que debía estar aquí" is an order.

0
Reply3 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/S.Evelyn

I believe that "should" and "ought" are synonymous in this case.

1
Reply3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/AndreyCha

Why does it accept both 'should' and 'must' for 'debía'? Is it that in Spanish they don't distinguish these meanings?

1
Reply3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/JudithStacey

what's wrong with "she told me that I ought to be here"

1
Reply3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/rooseveltnut1
rooseveltnut1Plus
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All the cheats have to do with "owing". But the answer has to do with have to and must.

1
Reply3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/tu.8zPhLD72zzoZN
tu.8zPhLD72zzoZN
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Report it. Debía is accepted as "should" in this sentence as well as "must".

0
Reply2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Emieye
Emieye
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"She told me that I needed to be here" is also a correct translation I think?

1
Reply1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/sae.sae.tae

"Deber" means obligation. It hasn't the meaning of should, it has the meaning of must.

"Debería" is what we use to say something that you should do, but you don't have to as an obligation.

"Deber de" is used to say something you think:

"Debe de estar cocinando": means that he/she should be cooking, he/she is probably cooking in this moment. "Debe estar cocinando": means that he/she must be cooking because it's a obligation.

We don't use "de" depending of the country, this preposition make sentences have a different meaning.

Anyways, a lot of Spanish people use it wrongly, so all of this is usually in our text books from highschool. Probably a spanish person would understand you if you don't know how to use "de", but it could be used wrongly.

I hope I explained well, I'm from Spain so my English could be a bit poor, but my Spanish is really good haha

1
Reply9 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/JohnCoffee

why "debía de estar" in the one sentence and know without "de" ?.. sometimes confusing:/

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Reply5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/zopilotes

Adding that yo is the key to the necessity to use debiera

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Reply4 years ago