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  5. "Si ella tuviera un coche, po…

"Si ella tuviera un coche, podría ir allí."

Translation:If she had a car, she could go there.

January 24, 2014



What is wrong with: If she would have a car she could go there


This is a common error that english speakers make. I learned this last night.

"I would have eaten that if I could chew" = correct "If I could have chewed, I would eat that." = correct "If I had chewed, I could have eat that" = correct "If I would have chewed, I could eat that." = incorrect

Think about the phrase "She would have a car." The "would" implies that her having a car is contingent upon another condition. e.g. "She would have a car if she could afford one".

So if we add an "if" to the front of that sentence there becomes an auxiliary and almost definitely unintended condition: "If she would have a car (if she could afford one), she could drive to the store". To rephrase: "If she could drive to the store, she would have a car if she could afford one" So you can see that these two sentences don't really work! You'd have to use a conjunction. Something like "She would have a car if she could afford one, then she could drive to the store.

So in this answer, use the past perfect "had" as opposed to the conditional perfect "would have".

More info: http://data.grammarbook.com/blog/verbs/if-i-would-have-vs-if-i-had/


In fact "I would have eaten this if I could chew" is correct. It is known as a mixed conditional, where a present (or rather general condition) has a past result.



Because, we don't say this. We only use "would" in the "if" clause in polite requests. This is standard 2nd conditional - if + past simple, would in the result clause.


If she had a car, she would be able to GET there=incorrect

If she had a car, she would be able to GO there= Correct


Remember the verb. Duo asked for "ir" which is "to go". Many people offer a reasonable alternative, but it's not what Duo asks for so it's marked wrong.


Maybe it's your dialect of English but I've never heard or read something like this


If she were have a car? That's what dl says. Is it correct? I'm Dutch, but I have never heard someone saying that.


that construction is completely wrong


yeah that is definitely not correct. they probably meant to put "if she were to have a car" which would be right, although nowadays most English speakers would not use that construction and would instead just say "if she had a car"


The English would be, "If she had a car..." Modern English speakers do not always use the subjunctive, but this is the correct English - grammatically. "If..." requires the subjunctive. "If I were a pirate...", "If I had a million dollars..." etc., etc.


You could say, "if she were to have a car", though.


I think that in English, the tendency is to not use the subjunctive and conditional forms like 'would' etc if there is a word in the sentence that imply subjunctive or conditional. 'Si tuviera' in Spanish combines imperfect subjunctive with 'si' or 'if' en English. In English, the subjunctive form is assumed because of the use of 'if'. The English is a bit confusing. The Spanish is pretty clear. Use the right helper word and the correct verb form.


In Spanish, wouldn't that be " si ella fuera tener un carro "? I don't remember hearing a construction like that in Spanish.


In English, we can use "were to have" to express the same idea as tuviera. Rather than translating it word for word, the same meaning is contained in one word in Spanish.


I think you can say "if she were TO have a car"? Not sure though...


Niv, sí, 'If she were to have a car' es correcto.


All throughout this course, each time I have heard that woman say 'ir' I hear 'y'


DL does not teach the vocabulary. So go here to listen to each letter. Especially the b,d and r. This helps a lot.



I'm still puzzling over why the past subjunctive in Spanish translates to the present in English? I mean, I trust Duolingo here, but my first instinct was to say "had she had a car", since tuviera is past-tense. Evidently, this is not how hings work.


mrule, this a sentence referring to the present, not the present tense, but right now., even though the past subjunctive is used. Same in English. If she had a car (today), she would go there. In the real past: Last week, if she had had a car, she would have gone there. La semana pasada, si ella hubiera tenido un coche, habría ido allí. I haven't used 'poder' in my examples, but you get the idea.


mrule - English and Spanish are similar in their use of the imperfect subjunctive. The "had" in "If she had..." is not a reference to the past, though it is the same word in English as the past tense for "to have". (See Item 4. If Clauses at http://www.spanishdict.com/topics/show/98)


Nice. So these are the uses I'm getting for past subjunctive: -- present counterfactual / irrealias -- in a subjunctive clause following past tense forms of "believe/want/wish/suppose"


I said, "... she could have gone there" and it was marked wrong. Why?


That would be, podría haber ido allí.

Podría ir translates as "could go".


Where is the subjunctive in this?


Anytime there is a dependent clause (If she had a car) and it starts with 'if', the subjunctive is used as this sets a condition.


Wonder if DL accepts: If she had a car, she would go there.


That would be "Si ella tuviera un coche, iría allí." Poder means to be able to. That's where the meaning "could" comes from--not from the tense itself.


DL also accepts "...she would be able to go there," which is probably because this construction maintains the meaning of "poder." "Would go there" expresses only her potential desire to go, rather than her ability to go, so DL might not accept it.


That shouldn't be accepted. "Would" and "Could" have different meanings.


Right, accept I have seen them used interchangeably in this chapter.


Right, I learned that conditional would/should were " either/or ". Duo likes to use would/should depending on context, In some cases context just isn't that clear.


What is the difference between "tuviera" and "tuvo" If they both translate to "she had"?


The subjunctive is used, among other things, to indicate a condition contrary to truth or reality. Just another idiosyncrasy of Spanish. In my opinion, it doesn't add anything useful to this sentence. The word "if" says it all, doesn't it?


That helps, thank you!


This duo lesson was brought to you by Captain Obvious!


And the city is saved again from ideas that aren't already clear to everyone...


I don't think I made a mistake! Sometimes duolingo gets it wrong...


Why could and not would?


Because that's what podría means.


"Ahí" and "Allí" are both well accepted


Yet DL does not accept "ahí" and marks it wrong.


How would one say, "If she had a car, she would go there"


I have never seen "she'd" are you sure about that?


Yes. 'd is a correct abbreviation for either "had" or "would", depending on context:

I'd go = "I would go."

I'd gone = "I had gone."

It can be used with any subject pronoun: I'd, you'd, he'd, she'd, it'd, we'd, they'd.


I answered "if she had a car, she could have gone there". Why is this wrong? If it is the wrong translation but correct in English, how would this be translated in Spanish?


Inbon, the concordance of tenses is not correct. In English: If she had a car, she would go there. If she had a car (now), she could go there (now), but she doesn't have a car. In the past: If she had had a car (but she did not have a car), she could have gone there. It works the same in Spanish, i.e. Si tuviera un coche, iría. Si hubiera tenido un coche, habría ido (or whatever verb you are using). The Spanish uses a subjuntive whereas English the past perfect after the "si", but the translation would be as I have indicated. This is not beginning Spanish :-)


This seems backwards to me, to what we have learned - tuviera is the subjunctive imperfect which is frequently expressed as "would" (i.e quisiera means " I would like...") but here it is "past' tense "had" and not " would have..." , and "podria" is the conditional form of poder but is not expressed as "would..." but rather "could" ( ie. is the imperfect "podia" expressed as "could")....?? To me the sentence should be "If she would have a car, she would go there" even though it sounds a little odd... I guess my confusion is when to translate subjunctive imperfect as "past tense" and when to translate as "conditional" tense ( in english anyways) and when is conditional tense translated as "past" tense ( ie "could") and when conditional ( i.e." would")....??


I guess my confusion is when to translate subjunctive imperfect as "past tense" and when to translate as "conditional" tense ( in english anyways) and when is conditional tense translated as "past" tense ( ie "could") and when conditional ( i.e." would")....??

Imperfect subjunctive--past tense. Conditional--would.


Quisiera - imperfect subjunctive tense but translated as " I would like" which doesn't sound like past tense to me but rather like conditional tense...

Podria - conditional tense but translated as "could" rather than "would" ( which sounds like past tense rather than conditional)


Yea, I see what you mean. That is confusing with the the conditional 'poder'. I don't have a ready answer for that.

As for 'quisiera', I very rarely run across that being used except when someone is being super polite and formal. I think it is like 'Oh dear, I don't know, I think I would like....LOL. This would, I supose, be the subjunctive indicating desire+indecision. But, yes it does translate like the conditional. Perhaps just another idiomatic expression?


yes , probably just "one of those things" for both examples ( podria, quisiera) i.e. idiomatic.....thanks.


Aren't the sentences in this section CONDITIONAL


Aren't the sentences in this section CONDITIONAL


Aren't the sentences here "conditional" rather than past subjunctive?


A little of both in this example.


FYI for nor non-native English speakers., < "Had she a car," is another option, except it does leave out the "if"). And DL did mark it wrong. However, the English sentence construction does not need the "if")


who can say where the road goes


Do 1st and 3rd person pronouns get used more in the conditional, imperfect, and subjunctive?


Is there any better way to confuse people than this: In an earlier practice a sentence like this was corrected: "Si ella tuviera un coche..."= " If she ONLY had a car..." And NOW IT'S MARKED FALSE. I can only accept or reject it. There must be some explanation to this, pero soy cansado...


What if she only had a car? Pudiera subjuncyivr


I wrote, "If she HAS a car..." and it was marked wrong.


HELP. I'm a bit old starting to learn a language!! how do you tell the difference between 'could' and 'would' in this sentence? Maybe I should give up?


Would translating as 'would be able' help? Actually, would, could, and should are auxiliary verbs used to mean the past tenses of will, can, and shall. In English 'could' is closest to 'would be able', so I think that is the best choice. My2cts.

[deactivated user]

    What is wrong with If she had a car she could go over there

    In other Spanish language apps, alli means over there, whereas ahi mean there.


    "if she'd have a car" is wrong?


    My word "car" autocorrected to "cat" so it was wrong, and I'm told the right answer is if she had a "stroller... "?? Lol. Interesting /rare translation


    who talks like that??!! this sucks.


    What about 'If she would have had a car, she could go there'? Sounds good to me, although I'm not a native


    If she were to have a car


    I put the answer exactly how it is written but I was marked wrong, why?


    The proper translation of the past subjunctive here is 'if she were to have a car, she would be able to go there'. This sentence translated is not past subjunctive


    I think the subjunctive in this case conveys a mood of uncertainty and not necessarily a difference in the literal translation of the past. Actually, I don't think 'if she were to have a car' is even correct English. Wouldn't it be 'if she were to have had a car?'. My2cts.

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