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  5. "Él no se siente bien."

"Él no se siente bien."

Translation:He does not feel well.

January 26, 2013



"se" is a reflexive pronoun. The technical literal translation is "he does not feel himself well", but in English that sounds clunky. The reason is, we don't differentiate between "feel" as in your personal feelings and "feel" as in to touch/feel something. The object of what is being felt (either something else or yourself) is just implied in English, while in Spanish it is directly stated. "El no siente bien" would mean "he does not feel well", but in the sense that he's not good at touching/feeling things with his hands/feet/what have you, wheres "El no se siente bien" means "he does not feel well"in the sense that he's sick/in a bad state/etc.

in summary: se siente: he feels (as in personal feelings, "he feels good") siente: he feels (as in feeling some thing/object, "he feels the grass")


that is one of the best tips I have read in all the comments on this site. Thanks


I sometimes wish English had reflexive pronouns. Does "I feel you, dude" mean that "I, myself, can relate to what you're saying", or does it mean "I touch you while you're sleeping"?


English does have reflexive pronouns.. himself, herself., themselves, ourselves


My Spanish teacher told me that sentir isn't used for physical touch, only emotions and feelings. Tocar is used for actual physical "touch".


Right, but its still the difference between HOW you feel (sentirse) and WHAT you feel (sentir). Sentirse is for things like, "I feel good", as opposed to sentir which would be used more like "I feel pain".

<pre>The object of what is being felt (either something else or yourself) is just implied in English, while in Spanish it is directly stated. </pre>

This is incredibly neat.


Good enough explanation for me. Helps a lot actually. Cheers


Yeah. In romance languages, you can't just treat a transitive verb like it's intransitive (e.g. "He smells the flower" vs "He smells"). You make the statement reflexive to accomplish the same thing (e.g. "He smells himself", or "The window breaks itself", etc.). In this case, "sentir" is transitive, so it must have an object, but the sentence is only about "him", so you use "se" (i.e. "himself"/"herself"/"itself").


so using "se" shows that he is feeling himself and not feeling an apple (i don't know, I couldn't come up with a good thing for him to feel)?


Thank you! this is very helpful


It was getting very difficult for me to understand the concept of 'se' thanks for explaining


By far the best explanation of "se" I've seen, thank you very much.


this is a GREAT piece of work. I wish all of the notes were written this well. Excellent. I totally understand it now. thanks.


Why "se" instead of "lo"?


it all makes perfect sense now!!! I was totally missing the requirement of 'se'


Good explanation


1071 upvotes. WOW!


That was super helpful


Notbird your so clear all the in MY head is clear


maaaaannn thanks! best explanation ever


Tengo una pregunta, does this "se" only goes with transitive verbs? Thanks in advance


señor/a, una lingot por tú.


This was very helpful. Thankyou


Notbird, thanks for the detailed and very clear explanation. Now se makes sense.


Has he tried eating an apple like the rest of them


why not "he is not feeling well?"


The short answer is that "is feeling" and "feels" are different in English also, correct? One has the "ing" ending, the other does not. You will learn how to say "is feeling" in Spanish in a future lesson, but this sentence does not use the "ing" verb tense.


The answer does not seem to explain why "he is not feeling well" is incorrect. The meaning is the same as "he does not feel well".


The meaning may be the same, but the grammar is different. These are two different sentences in English: "does not feel" and "is not feeling" and they are two different sentences in Spanish also. You will learn how to construct "ing" verbs in Spanish in a future lesson, but the grammer used in this sentence does not follow the "ing" construction.


I personally am a bit confused with se, and whenever I read explanations they're always too confusing. The way I explain it, is that se is just saying "self" or "himself, herself, itself." So this sentence without se would be "He doesn't feel good," meaning physically feel, the sense feel. Putting se in is like saying "He doesn't feel good himself."


Good simple explanation :)


So could someone tell me when you would use "Él no (LO) siente bien" or if that can be used?


I wonder that myself. Let me try though...

"El no lo siente bien" = He does not feel well, him"

"El no se siente bien" = He does not feel well, himself"

Could anyone verify?


If i heard someone say this I'd think they were saying: 'He doesn't know feelings well'.


Could you also say, He does not feel good?


I Highly recommend checking out this link to help with this entire lesson:


Memorizing the reflexive pronouns ahead of time makes this exercise much easier.


Thank you so much Steven!!! This helped me a ton!!!


Any reason why 'He is not feeling well' should be marked as wrong? The continuous present (in English) is usually the same as the simple present in Spanish.


He ate a bad apple because he got there after everyone else. :-)


"Mr Stark, I don't feel so good"


"Mr Stark I don't feel so good..."


I don't understand why there is this seemingly extra "se" in this sentence. Wouldn't just "El no siente bien" mean the same as "El no se siente bien"?? Thanks.


I have an idea. Sometimes siente is a statement of empathy for another person's feelings. The literal translation "he does not himself feel well" expresses that His pain is all his own. I might be over-analyzing. I'll be glad when i fully grasp the usage of these pronouns


He is feeling "himself." See the link I posted on the other comment. ;)


Why is the "se" there?


I think this is difficult especially for those who speak English. In Spanish and in a lot of other languages the verb 'feel' is used with a reflexive pronoun when talking about feeling oneself well or bad.


He is not feeling good? This is obviously wrong but I just want an explanation. I know I do well and Superman does good but with some of the other non-contextual situations I thought this would pass...


There's an English phrase that I think mirrors this as an indirect pronoun better: "he does not feel well in himself". It's more often used for when someone's a bit worried but not sure how bad it is, but it must come from the same grammatical place?


Does "El no se siente bien" mean "He does not feel well (right now)", while "El no siente bien" means "He does not feel well (ever)". As in he does not ever feel well?


Please see above, your first question is correct but "El no siente bien" means he cannot receive much sensation through his fingers.


Why isn't it, "hear"? he does not hear well?


Because the verb in this sentence is "sentir" (to feel), not "oir" (to hear).


Can someone help me out here? How do you say: He does not feel well (in a physical sense) He does not feel well (in an emotional sense) He does not feel well in himself.



I think "He does not, himself, feel well" should be accepted. For me, alteast, it helps me with remembering "se."


Why can't you say "he does not hear well?"


Couldn't "He is not feeling well" be accepted as well?


How do we know when to use the reflexive?


Himself is wrong?


It took me 2 correct translations in a row in this lesson to complete it. I absolutely flew through Obj. Pronouns


I said "He is not feeling well" and it was wrong. Why? Isn't it the same thing?


So "El no se siente bien", would be basically saying "he, himself, does not feel well?"


By far the most clear explanation I've seen in any response. Well done!


What does 'se' mean? Can it be left out?


I do not understand the meaning of se in a sentence. How and when to use it is difficult... who can explain it ?


If you think of the reflexive as "happening now" then this translates as "He is not feeling well."

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