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https://www.duolingo.com/seanbastard

Object Pronouns - Se - how do you use this word?

Hi, i don't understand how this word is used, the tips & notes section explains le lo te les los las etc... but not se?

4 years ago

7 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/ceaer
ceaer
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Direct object pronouns: me, te, lo, la, nos, los, las.

Indirect object pronouns: me, te, le, nos, les.

The indirect object pronouns "le" and "les" become "se" when they are used together with the direct object pronouns lo/la/los/las. That is to faciliate pronunciation.

For example:

She gave him a letter = Ella le dio una carta

She gave it to Bob = Ella la dio a Bob

She gave it to him = Ella le la dio (incorrect to leave it like this) - Ella se la dio

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/seanbastard

thanks that makes sense

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/vwlj
vwlj
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"Se" is also used reflexively, for e.g., "¿Cómo se llama?" - What do you call yourself?/what is your name? And I think I've seen it used to mean "one", an indefinite person - unknown whether he, she or it is meant - se paga en la oficina. Would ceaer pls. comment on the latter use?

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ceaer
ceaer
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That's the passive voice. A good overview here: http://spanish.about.com/cs/verbs/a/passive_se.htm

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/vwlj
vwlj
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Perhaps, ceaer, but I don't think so. The article you refer to does state that Spanish does have a true passive but it doesn't involve "se"; it would be translated like the English passive - the ball was thrown by John as compared with the active voice - John threw the ball. I think - not sure, though - that "se paga en la oficina" should be translated, "one pays in the office" - making that sentence a true passive would seem to be almost impossible - payment is made in the office, perhaps, but that sounds awful.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ceaer
ceaer
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It says that Spanish does have a true passive voice (it uses ser + participle) but it also says that it's much more common to use constructions with "se". The true passive voice is not used very often in Spanish. http://www.spanishdict.com/answers/100024/passive-se#.UzQXKfldXZI

It could also be, depending on the context, the "impersonal se". You'll see that a lot particularly with generalizations, like "En españa se usa 'vosotros'" - "In Spain, 'vosotros' is used". And in English, when we would start a sentence with a rhetorical "they say", you would use "se dice" in Spanish.

Or another example: many stores and businesses where I live have signs that say "Se habla español" - perhaps literally "one speaks Spanish" but it is translated as "Spanish is spoken here".

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/vwlj
vwlj
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Thanks, Ceaer, that helps.

4 years ago