Duolingo says that importar also means "amount to"; therefore, couldn't it also translate to "I amount to cheese".
I got this confused as the I form of 'importan'...I important/matter the cheese?
importar is used for both, I believe: "to import" (as in commerce) and "to matter / to be important". For the latter, it's another "backwards" verb like gustar where the thing that is important is the subject. Thus No me importa = "I don't care."
A "backwards" verb? wtf, it's a normal thing provided your language has some sort of noun declension. (even if it doesn't though, like in english It interests me -- it's the same thing)
"to import" is a transitive verb, i.e. it requires a direct object. And "to matter" is an intransitive verb, i.e. it doesn't require a direct object.
"Yo importo queso." (with "queso" being the direct object) would use the transitive verb, e.g. "I import cheese."
"Yo importo." has no direct object, so it is the intransitive verb, "matter", e.g. I matter.
Everyone is giving tactical advice. I just assumed that importo was import cause, well, there's not that much differance. Just an "O"! xD
I originally answered, "Cheese matters to me," but on reflection, that's not quite right. While "importar" means "to matter", it's a reflexive verb. Without a reflexive particle (like "me" or "se" or "te",) it's grammatically incorrect. Further, if that were the intention of the sentence, we would have seen "importar" conjugated as if queso were the subject, rather than the object; that is, it would've been "importa" rather than "importo".
So "Me importa queso" would, like various uses of "gustar", mean that cheese is important to me, but that's not the sentence shown here today. I was wrong.
I'm merely commenting on the possible confusion one might experience if they're not looking for the reflexive pronoun. That is, "Yo importo queso" and "Me importa queso" are superficially very similar sentences.
Specifically, I'm talking about the difference between "importar" and "importarse".
You did well reflecting on that. You have probably helped many (myself included) get a good grasp on this confusing matter.
So now importar is being used to mean import (as in transporting somewhere) , in addition to being used to mean 'matter' or 'be important to' ? This is confusing.
The etymology of the English "important" and "import" is the same, as is that of the Spanish counterparts. It's weird, but basically important = having the value of imported goods.
Back a few questions, it was argued that "importan" has to mean "matters" rather than "imports" because the focus has been on "matter" (which I had not noticed). This blows that out of the water.
In my dictionary "importar"s first meaning is "to matter" - no importa = it doesn't matter. The second meaning shown is "to import," which is apparently the only one that works in the context of this sentence.
My Spanish dictionary gives the meaning of 'importar' as 'to be of moment, be important or convenient; to concern, matter'. 'No importa' means no matter, it doesn't matter'.
It doesn't even list the other meaning as used in the 'queso' sentence.
What? This is I import cheese, as in, bring it into a country. Not important cheese....
Neither was "cheese matters to me", but I guess it was lacking the reflexive.
Cheese is very expensive in Canada (at least in BC) and is cheaper in the States.
because it is important to know how to put that frase together in case you ever need to import something (it may be chesee o it may be a whole bunc of other stuff) from an spanish speaking country