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"Él no es tan alto."

Translation:He is not that tall.

1
5 years ago

100 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/blissdismissed

Couldn't "tan alto" also be used to express "very tall" in addition to "that tall"?

13
Reply5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Iago
Iago
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No that's be muy alto. Tan means, "as," or "so".

"Él no es tan alto como su papá" he's not as tall as his dad. "¡No esta tan ruido!" Don't be so noisy!/Don't be that noisy!

1
Reply25 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/quinnculver

In (American) English, "He isn't very tall", "He isn't that tall", "He isn't too tall", and "He isn't so tall" all (frequently, maybe even usually) mean the same thing. The point is that when saying '<NOUN> isn't very <ADJECTIVE>', the meaning of "very" actually changes, albeit subtley. Is this the case in Spanish as well?

21
Reply5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Roentgen89
Roentgen89
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Same in (British) English - I just put "...too tall"

4
Reply3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/kazooka12

You have a 205 day streak!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Yikes! That is A LOT!!!!!

3
Reply2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/elabogado

The word "too" is slightly different, typically meaning that he isn't beyond the what something should be, e.g. Is that too much sugar? That isn't too sweet? It is beyond a certain level that is expected, average or acceptable. In this example, he is "too tall for the ride" - which makes him beyond the tolerable limit. You wouldn't say "very tall" or "so tall". It is a general statement - he is not so tall. He is not very tall. Thus it implies he is slightly above average or average, not extremely tall.

I'm not sure that "very" is such a great departure from "so" since they are so close so as to be practically indistinguishable. Both are used to imply that something is not to an extreme, e.g. the coffee is not so sweet. The coffee is not very sweet. Thus the coffee is sweet or less. And if you said "the coffee is not too sweet" it still can be very sweet - but not to the excess where it is unacceptable.

3
Reply2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Roentgen89
Roentgen89
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Wow, elabogado; thanks for having a go at explaining that. The semantics are quite subtle. That = tan, in this context, is the point here.

The discussion we are having isn't directly relevant to the translation as they mean different things. Can "too" mean "very"? Are they synonyms? I don't think they are, exactly - as well as your examples, how about the sentences: 1. "The room was too full" and 2. "The room was very full"? Neither room has spare capacity, but "very" suggests no space; whereas "too" indicates overcrowding. So there is a difference. On balance, I think you are right. 1. "No es demasiado alto." or "La habitación estaba demasiado lleno" 2. "Él no es muy alto." or "La habitación estaba muy lleno". Enough, already!!

4
2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/territech
territech
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OK - but I still don't see any difference between "he is not that tall" and "he is not too tall."

0
1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SchneiderMorgan

Wow! You do a lot of Duolingo! 387 day streak. I have a 0 day streak!

1
Reply2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/panpython

You have a 598 day streak!!!! Yikes!

0
Reply1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Zuckerberg666

You have an 800 day streak. Wow

0
Reply1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/rwmorris

"He is not very tall" is idiomatically identical to "He is not so tall" in American English; it is not used in the same sense as "muy" would be, although I can see why that would be confusing.

5
Reply3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/redneckray

Iago, you're a fine teacher. Thanks

4
Reply5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/MarjireWas

can you say " El es tan alto!", "He is so tall"?

4
Reply4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Gustobelly

I think that's a key question, Marj. I hope somebody answers it!

1
Reply3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/sunsoil

Correct me if I'm wrong because I'm just learning this. Isn't it "¡No estés tan ruidoso!" because it's a negative command? I'm basing it off this: www.studyspanish.com/lessons/informcomm1.htm

Also, ruidoso (noisy, adj.) vs. ruido (noise, n.)?

2
Reply3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/carolwoe

I used "He is not so tall" and it was correct.

2
Reply1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/AzadKhanAlizade

No esté*

1
Reply2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jeanet_jeanet

Why does tan mean that in this sentence

5
Reply4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/opsimathos

Why is "he is not very tall" different from "he is not so tall?"

4
Reply4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/gregoryje

"He is not very tall" implies comparison against a persons general knowledge of hight (or their serotype about average/general hight). It is nearly always a negative statment.

"He is not so tall" implies context of a previously mentioned but unspecific hight. Ie. 1st person; "He is very tall". 2nd person upon meeting 'him'; "He is not so tall". Can be either a negative or positive statment

"He is not that tall" implies either; 1. Context of a more specific hight. Ie. 1st person; "He is six foot". 2nd person; "He is not that tall". This can be a positive or negative statement. 2. A hight requirement hasnt been met. Mostly a negative statment. (This is actually a case of specific hight context as well)

"He is not too tall" is can be a case of specific hight or a more general specific preference (ie. He is not too tall 'for me'"). This is nearly always a positive statment.

To finish up. In English, so, that, very and too, are not all always interchangeable any only are when meaning (positive or negative) is not contradicted (Although meaning might be lost when going for an always positive statment to a negative statment). This means that for this statment you can always swap 'very' or 'too' for 'so' or 'that' but you cannot always swap 'so' or 'that' for 'very' or 'too'.

So for this statment in english. '///' = cannot be swapped; '/' = only can be swapped on occasion. Meaning may be lost or gained but not contradicted. Very -----> so Very -----> that Very -///-> too So --/--> very So -----> that So --/--> too That --/--> very That --/--> so That --/--> too Too -///-> very Too -----> so Too -----> that

Obviously this whole post is about english speaking and meaning given. And it is not about translating that sentance. This is because I do not know which meanings are applicable or where contradictions may arrise in spanish. I am a british english speaker and I posted this extravaganza after I saw people saying that these are interchangeable, when this is only sometimes the case.

TLDR; always use 'THAT' when using this kind of sentance and give meaning (positive or negative) through tone of voice.

8
Reply13 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/JasperRice1

I put "He's not too tall" and got it wrong. This was really informative. Thanks a lot for the clarification

0
Reply1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/DustNC
DustNC
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I agree with you. Duolingo seems to forego direct translations on quite a few things. Why should this be any different as long as it conveys the idea?

6
Reply3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Cateyes179

The way I see it, "he's not very tall" would insinuate he's a bit short. Saying "he's not so tall" doesn't necessarily mean he's not tall. For instance, a guy is 6'0 tall but another guy is 6'7, so you might say "guy 1 isn't so tall; my friend is 6'7 (even though 6'0 is still tall).

1
Reply4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/RastaFerrari

"he is not very tall" may be implied but that is not the direct translation.

0
Reply4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/QuietTigerJ

"He is not very tall" is not the same as "He is not that tall". The former is usually a generalized statement while the latter is usually spoken in a specific sense. For example, if someone tells you their boyfriend is really tall like a giant and when you see him he's like 5'10", most people would say "he is not THAT tall" refers to the person's previous statement.

3
Reply3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/BritniMont

"He isn't that tall". Does this translation mean he isn't particularly tall, or that he's not as tall as a neighbor, a street sign, or whatever height you imagined him to be, or something like that?

2
Reply3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Eugen_Paris

Why "He is not so high" is not accepted?

1
Reply2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/RaeLinda1

In spanish 'alto' may mean 'tall' or 'high,' but in English, high doesn't refer to how 'tall' a person is -- only a concept of height in position. High buildings, mountains, clouds, plants, even. Tall may refer to buildings, mountains, plants, too, but people are only 'high' if they are using illegal substances.

4
Reply2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/PrismVelocity

Kind of. People can be high without being on drugs too, instead they may be standing on something tall, or flying on a plane.

Barring drug abuse, the difference between "high" and "tall" is REALLY the difference between "altitude" and "vertical length". Maybe an hiker staring out from atop a cliff says to a friend: "Wow, we are really high right now."

0
Reply6 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/a.warlamov
a.warlamov
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Can you explain the difference between 'tan' and 'tanto'? Thank you

1
Reply2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Markovkin

Tanto relates to a person on "he"

0
Reply2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Markovkin

I think "ni" could also go instead of "no".

1
Reply2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/raahee

That dress of hers is too short- please anybody can translate it...

1
Reply2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/raahee

i got it.....get the explanation...HERE THAT MEANS not very, or not as much as has been said::::example...It isn’t all that cold. There aren’t that many people here.

1
Reply2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/JulianPadi11

I put he is not very tall but it said it was wrong

1
Reply2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/DreamsOfFluency

Read the above replies. "Tan" means "so" or "that", whereas "very" can impart a slightly different meaning. You could use "muy" to say "very" if that is what you want.

1
Reply2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Phil482606

Somebody's jealous

1
Reply2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/yuridado

why not el no es que alto someone please explain difference

1
Reply2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Ash473779
Ash473779
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Y yo no soy tan largo :(

1
Reply2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ShaniceHar

Can you also say "No Es tan Alto."?

1
Reply2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Luckas_Fortunato

I'm sorry, I'm studyng english. I can afirm that frase can be changed to "Él no es muy alto"! Could someone confirm if the word "that" is really a correct translate for these frases? ¡Gracias!

1
Reply2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/DreamsOfFluency

I believe you have misspelled the words "phrase" and "phrases" in your question. We do not have the words "frase" or "frases".

To me, and to google translate, you can translate "Él no es tan alto" as "He is not that tall" or "He is not so tall."

You definitely can translate "Él no es muy alto" as "He is not very tall." But, you may or not be able to translate it as "He is not that tall" depending on context. Usually it would be okay, but nuances could make a difference. Still, most native English speakers wouldn't correct you, I think, because the difference might be indistinguishable.

3
Reply2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/andy200353

In English in this situation would 'very' or 'that' not be interchangeable? I am pretty sure they would in common usage of language so in this circumstance you could say:

He is not that tall He is not very tall

It would mean the same thing even though your using two different words..?

1
Reply1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/loboshiboh

So what's the verdict on "He is not that tall." Would "that" be an acceptable translation of tan in this instance?

0
Reply3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/RaeLinda1

Yes. It might mean 'all that' tall. Or as in the previous examples where unstated comparisons are being made (my 6' 7" friend, my 6' foot friend is tall, but not 'that' tall). So this is just to get you used to hearing and thinking this phrase. Like when a baby learns 'run' they later learn various unstated extensions of the meaning. -- cars 'run', we 'run' a machine, ... etc.

2
Reply2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/PaulineReyes

He is not very tall. I think this should be acceptable.

0
Reply3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/RaeLinda1

Except, that this is not a 'test.' It is just to get you to comprehend a concept when you hear a certain phrase. So don't be so concerned about 'acceptable.' You didn't 'flunk' that question.

2
Reply2 years ago